Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

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Mickey Quicknumbers
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby Mickey Quicknumbers » Thu Feb 18, 2010 12:36 pm

One thing people defending the T3's and T4's aren't thinking about is that: Yes, there is a world of work outside of biglaw. Yes, there are a variety of reasons why one would attend a T3. But the question isn't "why would people attend a T3", it's "why do they exist?" If the US could meet its demand for lawyers comfortably with 120 schools, why do they need to have 200+? Imagine if there were only 100-120 law schools in the U.S. pretty much everyone who graduated from school (not in this economy) could get a job, whether it be a reasonable midlaw job, a solo practice, or Skadden. When 10 new law schools open up after the demand is met, that's 2500+ law school graduates that won't be employed, whether from one school or another. It's those schools like in Florida's case FIU, nova, Berry, St.Thomas, Famu, and soon Ave Maria that are causing unemployment rate at graduation to stink when all Florida needs is a UF, FSU, UM and a Stetson.

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reasonable_man
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby reasonable_man » Thu Feb 18, 2010 1:00 pm

Its funny. I was in federal court yesterday sitting at a table with US District Court judge, 2 attorneys from a Vault 10 firm (both HY grads), one attorney from a lower ranked Tier 2 and my TTT diploma.. Something occured to me at that moment.. The judge forgot to ask us where we went to LS... Weird.

Scurredsitless1
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby Scurredsitless1 » Thu Feb 18, 2010 1:06 pm

adh07d wrote:One thing people defending the T3's and T4's aren't thinking about is that: Yes, there is a world of work outside of biglaw. Yes, there are a variety of reasons why one would attend a T3. But the question isn't "why would people attend a T3", it's "why do they exist?" If the US could meet its demand for lawyers comfortably with 120 schools, why do they need to have 200+? Imagine if there were only 100-120 law schools in the U.S. pretty much everyone who graduated from school (not in this economy) could get a job, whether it be a reasonable midlaw job, a solo practice, or Skadden. When 10 new law schools open up after the demand is met, that's 2500+ law school graduates that won't be employed, whether from one school or another. It's those schools like in Florida's case FIU, nova, Berry, St.Thomas, Famu, and soon Ave Maria that are causing unemployment rate at graduation to stink when all Florida needs is a UF, FSU, UM and a Stetson.



After law school, the world is still competitive. The legal system wouldn't benefit from fewer lawyers working comfortably without having to compete for their jobs. The legal system benefits from having lots of competition. Lawyers do not.

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Mickey Quicknumbers
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby Mickey Quicknumbers » Thu Feb 18, 2010 1:15 pm

Scurredsitless1 wrote:
adh07d wrote:One thing people defending the T3's and T4's aren't thinking about is that: Yes, there is a world of work outside of biglaw. Yes, there are a variety of reasons why one would attend a T3. But the question isn't "why would people attend a T3", it's "why do they exist?" If the US could meet its demand for lawyers comfortably with 120 schools, why do they need to have 200+? Imagine if there were only 100-120 law schools in the U.S. pretty much everyone who graduated from school (not in this economy) could get a job, whether it be a reasonable midlaw job, a solo practice, or Skadden. When 10 new law schools open up after the demand is met, that's 2500+ law school graduates that won't be employed, whether from one school or another. It's those schools like in Florida's case FIU, nova, Berry, St.Thomas, Famu, and soon Ave Maria that are causing unemployment rate at graduation to stink when all Florida needs is a UF, FSU, UM and a Stetson.



After law school, the world is still competitive. The legal system wouldn't benefit from fewer lawyers working comfortably without having to compete for their jobs. The legal system benefits from having lots of competition. Lawyers do not.


Why then don't they open up 50+ more medical schools to benefit the medical community? I'm not talking about starving society of lawyers so that they can do what they want and get away with because they are a rare commodity. I'm saying that when unemployment for lawyers is like 30% (pulled this number out of my butthole)when the national average is around 10%, there is a disparity, those bottom tier law schools are the disparity.

enigmaingr
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby enigmaingr » Thu Feb 18, 2010 2:02 pm

adh07d wrote:One thing people defending the T3's and T4's aren't thinking about is that: Yes, there is a world of work outside of biglaw. Yes, there are a variety of reasons why one would attend a T3. But the question isn't "why would people attend a T3", it's "why do they exist?" If the US could meet its demand for lawyers comfortably with 120 schools, why do they need to have 200+? Imagine if there were only 100-120 law schools in the U.S. pretty much everyone who graduated from school (not in this economy) could get a job, whether it be a reasonable midlaw job, a solo practice, or Skadden. When 10 new law schools open up after the demand is met, that's 2500+ law school graduates that won't be employed, whether from one school or another. It's those schools like in Florida's case FIU, nova, Berry, St.Thomas, Famu, and soon Ave Maria that are causing unemployment rate at graduation to stink when all Florida needs is a UF, FSU, UM and a Stetson.


This position implies that if the ABA limited the number of accredited schools, T3 and T4 schools wouldn't exist. This is not the case, thanks to USNWR. Even if there were only 100 schools, about 25 of them would be T4 and subject to mockery by all those who attend the other 75 schools. Think about it: what would be the measure of a good program if USNWR didn't exist? How would you know if you attend the #1 or #186?

For various reasons, a lot of people on these boards narrowly view demand and employment. To some, the only legitimate legal jobs are those starting at $160,000 and located in NYC/DC/Chicago/LA. That is not reality, as about 90% of us are finding out, or soon will be. All sorts of people have legal issues everyday all over this country and the majority of those people (keep in mind that only about 25% of the population have a 4 year degree) don't know and don't care about the difference between Harvard and Cooley. All they want is someone licensed to practice law that charges a fair price.

More schools don't cause more unemployment. Particularly in a normal economy, legal unemployment is largely a matter of self selection. For the most part, T3 and T4 grads are taking the same jobs that they have been taking. Graduates of top programs tend to leave law altogether if they strike out of Biglaw or high level federal work; they rarely "work down" into the types of jobs that T3 and T4 grads take because a JD from HYS will open doors for you in a variety of fields that pay more money than the local DA. I've seen some of the resumes of applicants applying for positions in my county prosecutor's office and not one of them came from T14 schools. If what I said wasn't true, we should have received at least a couple from Michigan (the closest top flight program). As a result, guess who gets hired? Wayne State, MSU, UD Mercy, and Cooley grads. The funny part is that most of them actually set out to be local prosecutors; they don't see it as beneath them.

Are they making the big bucks? No. I doubt that many people on this board would be the envy of their friends making $50,000 a year. But here's another bit of perspective: the average family income is around $48,000. Obviously, many of us were fortunate to come from families making much more than that but most people don't. A lot of folks see going to a cheap local school to make $50,000 a pretty good opportunity. Where I'm at, $50,000 gets you a pretty decent life. Even in Chicago, you won't exactly be eating at a soup kitchen on that salary and you'll probably find a few folks with similar levels of education wishing they had what you have.

A lot of parties benefit from having more schools. Some non-traditional students would be effectively barred from entering the legal profession if some of these schools didn't exist. The legal profession would lose out on having, say, a career military person, a single mother, or a first generation college student that has to work full time to take care of the family. All of these sorts of people bring a wealth of experience and the ability to relate to and serve a sizable population that Biglaw will never know (much less care about).

From the schools' perspective, it's beneficial to all as well. A lot of lesser known schools are interested in starting a law program to add strength to their overall program. The University of Houston and Michigan State University come to mind as places where that strategy succeeded. Detroit College of Law had the reputation of Cooley and MSU was one of the few major universities without a law school before they joined together.

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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby r6_philly » Thu Feb 18, 2010 2:06 pm

adh07d wrote:
After law school, the world is still competitive. The legal system wouldn't benefit from fewer lawyers working comfortably without having to compete for their jobs. The legal system benefits from having lots of competition. Lawyers do not.


Why then don't they open up 50+ more medical schools to benefit the medical community? I'm not talking about starving society of lawyers so that they can do what they want and get away with because they are a rare commodity. I'm saying that when unemployment for lawyers is like 30% (pulled this number out of my butthole)when the national average is around 10%, there is a disparity, those bottom tier law schools are the disparity.[/quote]

What about UGs? What are the TTT UG's employment rates? Should we shut a lot of the TTT public and private UGs that charge a fortune?

I am uncomfortable drawing a relationship between the TTT law schools and the umemployment rate of grads. The quality of the grads other than the educational institution determine who get jobs. What if people go to law school for a law education that can qualify them for the bar (in hope of gainful legal employment). Like we go to UG to gain knowledge and skill that COULD qualify us for jobs. But jobs are not guaranteed. You do gain what you want from the school, the ABA recognized degree. Getting a job is on you. But if you score a 140 something and have a 2.9 GPA chances are you are going to have a tough time getting jobs. It isn't the fault of the law school because you came to the T3/T4 unprepared and under qualified.
They are just there to provide a service ... to provide EDUCATIONAL opportunity. I didn't think we were suppose to limit that only to people who are qualified to get good jobs.

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darknightbegins
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby darknightbegins » Thu Feb 18, 2010 2:44 pm

Alright some people need to realize not all TTT schools are created equal. Schools like West Virginia and University or Arkansas and Nebraska, although I read the Cornhuskers will be back in the T100 next year, and Hawaii are really the only game in town. If you want to be a prosecutor or criminal defense attorney then what is the problem with going to a TTT school especially if you are getting a partial or full ride? Sure the money isn't what BigLaw makes but not everyone goes to law school with that in mind to begin with.

Now, for the poster that was shitting on Florida schools like Barry...there you have a point. Florida already has three good law schools in UF, FSU and UM. I guess you could through Stetson in there as well. Schools like Dayton in that state are a rip off and the ABA should do something about them.

It all depends on the region. If you are in a state like California then I would think TTT and TTTT schools probably do screw over their students unless those students are going basically for free, in which case they get what they paid for. But if you want to be in a state like Montana or Wyoming, which believe it or not these states need attorneys too, then I don't see how a TTT or a TTTT is such a bad thing just as long as you aren't paying sticker.

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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby kittenmittons » Thu Feb 18, 2010 2:45 pm

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r6_philly
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby r6_philly » Thu Feb 18, 2010 2:47 pm

When 1000 people in FL wants to fill 700 available seats, a new law school may open up. the 300 who couldn't compete for the 700 will go to the new TTTTTTT with 300 seats and pay full price. That's why T3/T4/T99 law schools exist. (nevermind there are only 300 available jobs upon graduation, that is not the point).

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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:08 pm

reasonable_man wrote:Its funny. I was in federal court yesterday sitting at a table with US District Court judge, 2 attorneys from a Vault 10 firm (both HY grads), one attorney from a lower ranked Tier 2 and my TTT diploma.. Something occured to me at that moment.. The judge forgot to ask us where we went to LS... Weird.


Reasonableman, we get it. You went to a T3 and succeeded. Congratulations. You should be commended for your hard work, networking, intelligence, etc.

But you are an OUTLIER, not the norm. Every single person I know who is thinking about LS at a T3 thinks they can work their ass off and become a big shot private lawyer or a federal prosecutor. Just looking at the boards here on TLS gives you an idea of that sort of mentality.

Your whole "Look at me, I went to a TTT and now I'm kicking ass and taking names" mentality gives people the impression that going to a T3 gives you a distinct possibility of an awesome job, when in reality the possibility is very small. You are essentially encouraging people to waste their money and assume massive debt for what is likely to be a horrible ROI upon graduation. The stats are the stats, my friend. Relaying rare and unique stories of T3 success does not trump the harsh reality that most T3 students are SOL in this economy.

NOTE: I am NOT saying that there aren't good reasons for T3 schools. Are there too many law schools? Absolutely. BUT if you have good connections, are getting a huge scholarship, or are looking to fit into a regional "niche," then okay. Go for it, if it makes you happy. But if you think that going to Stetson or Cooley or Detroit Mercy and paying 30k+ per year is going to help you land a clerkship, big law job, or high profile government job, you are crazy. Don't look to reasonableman's success and think "I can be just like him!"

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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby sibley » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:14 pm

romothesavior wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:Its funny. I was in federal court yesterday sitting at a table with US District Court judge, 2 attorneys from a Vault 10 firm (both HY grads), one attorney from a lower ranked Tier 2 and my TTT diploma.. Something occured to me at that moment.. The judge forgot to ask us where we went to LS... Weird.


Reasonableman, we get it. You went to a T3 and succeeded. Congratulations. You should be commended for your hard work, networking, intelligence, etc.

But you are an OUTLIER, not the norm. Every single person I know who is thinking about LS at a T3 thinks they can work their ass off and become a big shot private lawyer or a federal prosecutor. Just looking at the boards here on TLS gives you an idea of that sort of mentality.

Your whole "Look at me, I went to a TTT and now I'm kicking ass and taking names" mentality gives people the impression that going to a T3 gives you a distinct possibility of an awesome job, when in reality the possibility is very small. You are essentially encouraging people to waste their money and assume massive debt for what is likely to be a horrible ROI upon graduation. The stats are the stats, my friend. Relaying rare and unique stories of T3 success does not trump the harsh reality that most T3 students are SOL in this economy.

NOTE: I am NOT saying that there aren't good reasons for T3 schools. Are there too many law schools? Absolutely. BUT if you have good connections, are getting a huge scholarship, or are looking to fit into a regional "niche," then okay. Go for it, if it makes you happy. But if you think that going to Stetson or Cooley or Detroit Mercy and paying 30k+ per year is going to help you land a clerkship, big law job, or high profile government job, you are crazy. Don't look to reasonableman's success and think "I can be just like him!"


plus you spend all freaking day in here.

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romothesavior
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:17 pm

reasonable_man wrote:So that kids like me who bombed the LSAT (before they let you get away with not averaging your scores), can come along, attend a school that no one on TLS has even heard of, use connections gained while working in a largish firm while in college to obtain a good SA job at a nice midlaw, prove himself to be a valuable asset to that said midlaw-firm, get offered a job before LS even ends and enjoy a well-paying job in a midlaw in NYC, while gradutes of the T100 are offering hand-jobs to plaintiff's personal injury partners in exchange for informational interviews.


Also, you have to realize that your story is partially the result of an inflated legal economy. There are kids at median at T25s that would kill to have a career path like yours. Unfortunately, they aren't getting those jobs anymore, so is it reasonable to expect a T3 to get them when kids at the Vanderbilts, WUSTLs, UIUCs, BUs of the world are struggling to get them? Sure, there are some gems in every T2-T3 class that will do well. I do believe that cream usually does rise to the top. But let's be honest: the typical T3 law school student is not even close to being on par with the typical T1 student. Unfortunately, every kid at a T3 thinks they are the "cream" and they claim that they just partied too much freshman year, don't do well on timed tests, weren't focused on the LSAT, etc.

I'm in no way trying to attack you personally. I've read a number of your posts in the past and found them to be quite helpful and informative. I'm just trying to get you to tone down this pro-T3 rhetoric because it encourages a bunch of mediocre students to waste their time and money in LS.

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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby GATORTIM » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:22 pm

something else that is funny is the concern of many TLSers for the financial well-being of other law school applicants. Perhaps you would be better served picketing outside of a BMW dealership and convincing some middle-class sap from dropping $70k on a new car.

I hope you are recording your time spent on TLS for community service hours.

edit: see above post
Last edited by GATORTIM on Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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reasonable_man
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby reasonable_man » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:23 pm

sibley wrote:
romothesavior wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:Its funny. I was in federal court yesterday sitting at a table with US District Court judge, 2 attorneys from a Vault 10 firm (both HY grads), one attorney from a lower ranked Tier 2 and my TTT diploma.. Something occured to me at that moment.. The judge forgot to ask us where we went to LS... Weird.


Reasonableman, we get it. You went to a T3 and succeeded. Congratulations. You should be commended for your hard work, networking, intelligence, etc.

But you are an OUTLIER, not the norm. Every single person I know who is thinking about LS at a T3 thinks they can work their ass off and become a big shot private lawyer or a federal prosecutor. Just looking at the boards here on TLS gives you an idea of that sort of mentality.

Your whole "Look at me, I went to a TTT and now I'm kicking ass and taking names" mentality gives people the impression that going to a T3 gives you a distinct possibility of an awesome job, when in reality the possibility is very small. You are essentially encouraging people to waste their money and assume massive debt for what is likely to be a horrible ROI upon graduation. The stats are the stats, my friend. Relaying rare and unique stories of T3 success does not trump the harsh reality that most T3 students are SOL in this economy.

NOTE: I am NOT saying that there aren't good reasons for T3 schools. Are there too many law schools? Absolutely. BUT if you have good connections, are getting a huge scholarship, or are looking to fit into a regional "niche," then okay. Go for it, if it makes you happy. But if you think that going to Stetson or Cooley or Detroit Mercy and paying 30k+ per year is going to help you land a clerkship, big law job, or high profile government job, you are crazy. Don't look to reasonableman's success and think "I can be just like him!"


plus you spend all freaking day in here.


First, you'll note that I post a few times in one day and then, often times, do not come back for a week at a time. I like to post here. Its fun. I billed 15.9 hours yesterday, so I don't feel bad losing 45 mins to TLS today.

As for the rest of the comments you quoted, Perhaps, Romothesavior, you have not read many of my posts. I invite you to do so. 90% of them talk about the trouble of attending any school outside of the top 30 and the limited prospects available. Frankly, there might be 7 kids in my LS graduating class as succesful as I am and thats probably a high estimate. I've been documenting the dangers of attending TTTs since I first signed on here.

The problem with this post, is that it attacks TTT and TTTT law schools as if they are any different than a lower T1 or a TT LS. Because frankly, there is no difference. To me, there is nothing more pathetic than someone at say Tulane making fun of another LS because that school is a "TTT" as it is pretty well settled that Tulane is also a TTT in its own special way.

My point in this thread is that there are successful people everywhere and there are failures everywhere. While its true, T30 grads are more often than not succesful to some extent, the fact of the matter is that there are a number of them that aren't. Further, when you drop into the T30-T100 range, there are almost the same number of students that will not succede (by TLS measures), as there are at TTT and TTTT law schools.

In short, You're either T14, T30 or TTT. There is nothing else. At every TTT, there will be a handful of people that make it and do WAY better than more than 60% of the idiots at T30-T100 schools that sat on their high horse expecting to get a good job because they went to a "great" "regional school."

I'm not telling anyone to go to a TTT. In this market, you're fucking retarded to be considering most law schools, especially the lowest ranking ones.. But to limit the criticism to TTT and TTTT law schools is absurd.

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romothesavior
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:27 pm

You are indeed a reasonableman. I like your distinction T14/T30/TTT and I think it is probably true (although you could probably add T6 to the front of that, since there is a pretty big difference between U of Chicago and Cornell or Gtown).

Perhaps you are right; I haven't read enough of your posts to understand your position. I am more of a casual TLS lurker than an active participant. Like I said, I wasn't attacking you personally, but I just took objection to the way you presented your case in your earlier posts. It sounds like you and I agree on more than I was aware.

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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:34 pm

GATORTIM wrote:something else that is funny is the concern of many TLSers for the financial well-being of other law school applicants. Perhaps you would be better served picketing outside of a BMW dealership and convincing some middle-class sap from dropping $70k on a new car.

I hope you are recording your time spent on TLS for community service hours.

edit: see above post


First of all, this is an internet forum. People often come on here to ask questions and seek answers. What is wrong with people giving their honest opinion?

Second, I think there is an ethical component involved in this question (at least for many of us). Is it ethical for the ABA and these TTTTTTTTs to continue to open their doors, charge insane tuition rates, and hand 95% of their graduating class a worthless piece of paper? Esepcially in this economy? Granted, the "consumer" (in this case the student) bears part of the responsibility, but I think there is something seriously messed up with a system where schools are charging 120k+ for what they know is a shit degree.

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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby reasonable_man » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:44 pm

romothesavior wrote:You are indeed a reasonableman. I like your distinction T14/T30/TTT and I think it is probably true (although you could probably add T6 to the front of that, since there is a pretty big difference between U of Chicago and Cornell or Gtown).

Perhaps you are right; I haven't read enough of your posts to understand your position. I am more of a casual TLS lurker than an active participant. Like I said, I wasn't attacking you personally, but I just took objection to the way you presented your case in your earlier posts. It sounds like you and I agree on more than I was aware.


The rankings:

T3>T6>T10>T14>T30>Degree from Burger-College at McDonalds>All the rest of the Law schools approved by the ABA>Katherine Gibbs secretarial school>non-approved ABA Law schools>Cooley

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GATORTIM
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby GATORTIM » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:46 pm

I agree that there are too many law schools, but it's purely supply and demand. You could probably argue that there are too many institutions granting bachelor degrees as well (the modern day HS diploma). I think the surge in LS's is a direct result of the watered down prestige of the BS/BA in conjunction with the desire for applicants to seperate themselves from the pack.

People that would have made a career flipping hamburgers or working in retail 20 years ago are now competing for mid-level corporate jobs compliments of on-line bachelor programs. The middle-class is oversaturated with "qualified" (aka anybody with a BA/BA) and the surge in law schools and applications is likely the result.

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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby richardfitzwell » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:48 pm

reasonable_man wrote:
romothesavior wrote:You are indeed a reasonableman. I like your distinction T14/T30/TTT and I think it is probably true (although you could probably add T6 to the front of that, since there is a pretty big difference between U of Chicago and Cornell or Gtown).

Perhaps you are right; I haven't read enough of your posts to understand your position. I am more of a casual TLS lurker than an active participant. Like I said, I wasn't attacking you personally, but I just took objection to the way you presented your case in your earlier posts. It sounds like you and I agree on more than I was aware.


The rankings:

T3>T6>T10>T14>T30>Degree from Burger-College at McDonalds>All the rest of the Law schools approved by the ABA>Katherine Gibbs secretarial school>non-approved ABA Law schools>Cooley




TITCR, however Cooley is still ranked too high.

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PDaddy
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby PDaddy » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:53 pm

adh07d wrote:One thing people defending the T3's and T4's aren't thinking about is that: Yes, there is a world of work outside of biglaw. Yes, there are a variety of reasons why one would attend a T3. But the question isn't "why would people attend a T3", it's "why do they exist?" If the US could meet its demand for lawyers comfortably with 120 schools, why do they need to have 200+? Imagine if there were only 100-120 law schools in the U.S. pretty much everyone who graduated from school (not in this economy) could get a job, whether it be a reasonable midlaw job, a solo practice, or Skadden. When 10 new law schools open up after the demand is met, that's 2500+ law school graduates that won't be employed, whether from one school or another. It's those schools like in Florida's case FIU, nova, Berry, St.Thomas, Famu, and soon Ave Maria that are causing unemployment rate at graduation to stink when all Florida needs is a UF, FSU, UM and a Stetson.


But that's exactly the point. Can the U.S. meet its needs with just 120 schools? And what would that situation do for the legal profession? Students would not work nearly as hard because grades might not be necessary at a good portion of the schools. That would not bode well for the profession. Competition is the cornerstone of American achievement, and law students SHOULD fear for their jobs. It is also dangerous to assume that, based on sheer numbers, 120 schools would suffice to meet the legal needs of America.

I disagree with this notion. It's just that most law grads wind up with so much debt that they inevitably get sucked inbto the conundrum that is BigLaw, creating the false impression that most students "desire" those jobs when they in fact only "covet" them. As I meantioned earlier, someone has to do farming contracts and the like.

The other consideration is specialties like entertainment law, where lower-ranked schools like Southwestern are better than just about any top tier school in terms of job access and preparation. If you cut the TTT schools, NYU, Columbia, Fordham, UCLA, USC, and Loyola would have to enlarge their classes and focus even more on entertainment and sports law. TTT schools fill gaps, and they do provide quality education. The solution might be drastically shrinking class sizes at ALL schools rather than cutting the schools themselves.

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Mickey Quicknumbers
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby Mickey Quicknumbers » Thu Feb 18, 2010 4:01 pm

enigmaingr wrote:
This position implies that if the ABA limited the number of accredited schools, T3 and T4 schools wouldn't exist. This is not the case, thanks to USNWR. Even if there were only 100 schools, about 25 of them would be T4 and subject to mockery by all those who attend the other 75 schools. Think about it: what would be the measure of a good program if USNWR didn't exist? How would you know if you attend the #1 or #186?

Sure ranking would still be relevant in determing who can get more prestigious jobs etc. But the issue here is unemployment, and given a smaller number of schools there would be a smaller amount of unemployment in the legal field.

enigmaingr wrote:
More schools don't cause more unemployment. Particularly in a normal economy, legal unemployment is largely a matter of self selection.

maybe not unemployment overall, but within the legal field given a demand, yes more schools does cause more unemployment within that field, and the legal field is what is relevant in this discussion. People working at Chile's aren't lowering the unemployment rate of law school graduates but that's not the point here.

enigmaingr wrote:
For the most part, T3 and T4 grads are taking the same jobs that they have been taking. Graduates of top programs tend to leave law altogether if they strike out of Biglaw or high level federal work; they rarely "work down" into the types of jobs that T3 and T4 grads take because a JD from HYS will open doors for you in a variety of fields that pay more money than the local DA. I've seen some of the resumes of applicants applying for positions in my county prosecutor's office and not one of them came from T14 schools. If what I said wasn't true, we should have received at least a couple from Michigan (the closest top flight program). As a result, guess who gets hired? Wayne State, MSU, UD Mercy, and Cooley grads. The funny part is that most of them actually set out to be local prosecutors; they don't see it as beneath them.

Are they making the big bucks? No. I doubt that many people on this board would be the envy of their friends making $50,000 a year. But here's another bit of perspective: the average family income is around $48,000. Obviously, many of us were fortunate to come from families making much more than that but most people don't. A lot of folks see going to a cheap local school to make $50,000 a pretty good opportunity. Where I'm at, $50,000 gets you a pretty decent life. Even in Chicago, you won't exactly be eating at a soup kitchen on that salary and you'll probably find a few folks with similar levels of education wishing they had what you have.


again you're missing what i'm saying. Instead of having 60% of Wayne state, MSU, UD Mercy, and Cooley grads leave the field because they can't find work, close down three of those schools and let the void be filled in by bottom of the class T30's and median T2's who are currently unemployed.

enigmaingr wrote:A lot of parties benefit from having more schools. Some non-traditional students would be effectively barred from entering the legal profession if some of these schools didn't exist. The legal profession would lose out on having, say, a career military person, a single mother, or a first generation college student that has to work full time to take care of the family. All of these sorts of people bring a wealth of experience and the ability to relate to and serve a sizable population that Biglaw will never know (much less care about).


Yes these are in fact positive effects, but ultimately these schools are doing more harm than good by producing these armies of unemployed indebted graduates. If the number of law schools was trimmed to 100ish, I would argue that with schools no longer harshly competing for prestige because of the increased availability of jobs for those in LS, they could afford to look at applicants more holistically and still allow diversity rather than being so numbers driven.


enigmaingr wrote:From the schools' perspective, it's beneficial to all as well. A lot of lesser known schools are interested in starting a law program to add strength to their overall program. The University of Houston and Michigan State University come to mind as places where that strategy succeeded. Detroit College of Law had the reputation of Cooley and MSU was one of the few major universities without a law school before they joined together.


Again, a university becoming slightly more prestigious is not worth the cost to the students with eons of debt and grim employment. It does more harm than good

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Mickey Quicknumbers
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby Mickey Quicknumbers » Thu Feb 18, 2010 4:05 pm

PDaddy wrote:
adh07d wrote:One thing people defending the T3's and T4's aren't thinking about is that: Yes, there is a world of work outside of biglaw. Yes, there are a variety of reasons why one would attend a T3. But the question isn't "why would people attend a T3", it's "why do they exist?" If the US could meet its demand for lawyers comfortably with 120 schools, why do they need to have 200+? Imagine if there were only 100-120 law schools in the U.S. pretty much everyone who graduated from school (not in this economy) could get a job, whether it be a reasonable midlaw job, a solo practice, or Skadden. When 10 new law schools open up after the demand is met, that's 2500+ law school graduates that won't be employed, whether from one school or another. It's those schools like in Florida's case FIU, nova, Berry, St.Thomas, Famu, and soon Ave Maria that are causing unemployment rate at graduation to stink when all Florida needs is a UF, FSU, UM and a Stetson.


But that's exactly the point. Can the U.S. meet its needs with just 120 schools? And what would that situation do for the legal profession? Students would not work nearly as hard because grades might not be necessary at a good portion of the schools. That would not bode well for the profession. Competition is the cornerstone of American achievement, and law students SHOULD fear for their jobs. It is also dangerous to assume that, based on sheer numbers, 120 schools would suffice to meet the legal needs of America.

I disagree with this notion. It's just that most law grads wind up with so much debt that they inevitably get sucked inbto the conundrum that is BigLaw, creating the false impression that most students "desire" those jobs when they in fact only "covet" them. As I meantioned earlier, someone has to do farming contracts and the like.

The other consideration is specialties like entertainment law, where lower-ranked schools like Southwestern are better than just about any top tier school in terms of job access and preparation. If you cut the TTT schools, NYU, Columbia, Fordham, UCLA, USC, and Loyola would have to enlarge their classes and focus even more on entertainment and sports law. TTT schools fill gaps, and they do provide quality education. The solution might be drastically shrinking class sizes at ALL schools rather than cutting the schools themselves.


Or, cut out the right amount of schools so that the number of grads seeking entertainment law who are unemployed shrinks close to 0, match the supply and demand (I know this is impractical, but so is shutting down 100 schools anyways, i'm speaking theoretical here). As far as cutting class sizes, that's an equally good idea. My point was essentially to shrink the number of incoming JD, if shrinking all class sizes can effectively accomplish the same ends, great point.
Last edited by Mickey Quicknumbers on Thu Feb 18, 2010 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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bceagles182
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby bceagles182 » Thu Feb 18, 2010 4:10 pm

"why do third and fourth tier law schools exist?" = "I'm upset that the legal market is saturated and I'm worried that someone at TTT school is going to get a job before I do"

Why else would you people care enough about it to complain about this everyday? I'm not buying that most of these people are actually concerned about the graduates of TTTs.

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romothesavior
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 18, 2010 4:12 pm

enigmaingr wrote:This position implies that if the ABA limited the number of accredited schools, T3 and T4 schools wouldn't exist. This is not the case, thanks to USNWR. Even if there were only 100 schools, about 25 of them would be T4 and subject to mockery by all those who attend the other 75 schools. Think about it: what would be the measure of a good program if USNWR didn't exist? How would you know if you attend the #1 or #186?


I don't know about this. Some of the smartest people I know are going to medical school at places with "mediocre" lay prestige. And I've checked the med school rankings, and their schools are not in the medical equivallent of law school's T1. Some of them are in the middle of the rankings or even down towards the bottom of the list.

Are they mocked by the people at the top? Are they unemployable after graduation? Hell no, because earning an MD is a damn hard thing to do. There are very few medical schools (and as a result, very few doctors), so being a doctor (even from a lesser known school) is still pretty prestigious and makes you very employable.

The USNWR rankings exist for undergrad, med school, etc., but the fervor with which they are followed for LS is a direct result of how many schools there are. If we had less schools and everyone in LS knew they would have some sort of job upon graduation, people would mellow out a bit and there wouldn't be this rabid concern about rankings.

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romothesavior
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Re: Why do Third Tier and Fourth Tier Law Schools even exist?

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 18, 2010 4:13 pm

bceagles182 wrote:"why do third and fourth tier law schools exist?" = "I'm upset that the legal market is saturated and I'm worried that someone at TTT school is going to get a job before I do"

Why else would you people care enough about it to complain about this everyday? I'm not buying that most of these people are actually concerned about the graduates of TTTs.


Actually, I am. I have a few friends who are going to make the plunge into a TTT, and I'm very concerned about their well-being. Despite my hints at the shitty job market and my attempts to get them onto TLS, they are still looking to forge ahead. And as I said above, their is an ethical issue involved here. What these schools are doing is just plain wrong.




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