The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

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TTT-LS
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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby TTT-LS » Sat Sep 12, 2009 11:09 pm

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Last edited by TTT-LS on Mon Jun 28, 2010 8:01 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 13, 2009 1:01 am

It shouldn't be difficult to figure out who I am.

The entire topic, in my opinion is borderline offensive, and certainly the responses and speculations in the thread so far have been uninformed and definitely show a side of the NU student body that I hope isn't indicative of the population as a whole. Even your response to my post is highly combative and clearly models the theme of this thread.

In addition, my assertions weren't meant as an argument but rather to give some first-hand insight into the class makeup of the AJDs. Also, I didn't claim to have more insight than an upperclassmen. The fact that you gleaned that from my post is also indicative of the general hostility I'm sensing from this thread. Simply put, the information I have and gave to this thread was from the professor himself. You can probably verify everything I've said yourself.

If you want to continue this conversation, I suggest we do this in person. In the name of civility, at the very least, talk to some of the AJDs instead of posting a quasi-anonymous thread inviting criticism of the program and its participants.

-- sorry not sure why I'm anonymous on this thread.

j-chao2011

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bwv812
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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby bwv812 » Sun Sep 13, 2009 3:18 am

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thesealocust
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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby thesealocust » Sun Sep 13, 2009 8:44 am

I find this topic really interesting, but the #1 piece of missing information is - once released from the curve, what WAS The average GPA given in each of the AJD classes?

(NU curves to 3.2, yes?)

If it was 3.4/3.5/3.4/3.35 then I'd be raising hell.

If it was 3.21/3.25/3.22/3.23 then I'd say the point is entirely moot.

I'm not sure we have any way of figuring this out - the easiest way would be to simply look at the average GPA of the AJDs.

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Dick Whitman
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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby Dick Whitman » Sun Sep 13, 2009 10:18 am

One thing nobody seems to have noted is that adding a group of strong candidates allows NU to attract a stronger pool of employers to OCI. That helps everyone.

The AJDs were graded on the same tacit curve used for CLR for everyone. It would be ridiculous to force a hard curve on a class of 27. If you want to ask Prof. Redish why he took it so easy on the AJDs be my guest.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby TTT-LS » Sun Sep 13, 2009 11:55 am

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby Dick Whitman » Sun Sep 13, 2009 12:27 pm

To follow up on what I said earlier about the curve, the professors teaching the summer AJD courses are experienced professors who have taught those courses many times. The feedback we got from them was, "we know what an A exam looks like, we know what a B- exam looks like, etc."

The tension is understandable for two reasons:
(1) This economy is really, really bad. When 200+ attorney offices aren't having summer programs or are only hiring 2-3 SAs, it will be tougher for anyone to get a SA position. That being said, NU students remain in better position to land those jobs than students at all but a handful of institutions.
(2) While it matters very little for law school admissions, work experience matters quite a bit to firms (this is obvious both from NU's placement statistics and the feedback I have received from firms). The work experience of the AJD as a whole is really, really strong (with an average of around six years of work experience). But as I said before, in the long run this will pull more employers to OCI at NU.

I doubt the AJD program provides any sort of advantage over how the same students would do in a three year program. The regular JDs have an extra semester of law school and a summer of legal work experience to show employers. Some firms simply won't hire JD/MBAs; I'm sure the same is true of AJDs, but no one knows who those firms are yet. I'm young enough that it won't affect me, but I'm a little concerned that some of the older AJDs will face a bias against them due to a lack of faith they will stick around to make partner. The regular JDs hardly seem to be at a disadvantage.

Frankly, the administration miscalculated with their (apparent) belief that the AJD students would not participate in OCI. Some skipped it entirely, and a higher percentage will be interested in more business-oriented opportunities such as consulting or i-banking, but the large majority of AJD students are looking for traditional BigLaw jobs.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby FrankReynolds » Sun Sep 13, 2009 6:47 pm

I don't attend NU, but joshuach's post seems far more reasonable than others, and TTT-LS's criticism seems way over the top.

This whole criticism is analogous to students at another school complaining if there section had a few extra full scholarship kids in it.

NU is trying to push the school up in the rankings, and this program seems to have the potential to do so, and thus help out all JDs in the future.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby TTT-LS » Sun Sep 13, 2009 7:26 pm

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby FrankReynolds » Sun Sep 13, 2009 7:34 pm

and a few more are borderline offensive to JD student


I just didn't see anything that was remotely offensive, so it came off as overthetop

illuminated
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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby illuminated » Sun Sep 13, 2009 9:48 pm

1) None of this changes the fact that employers primarily look at grades and if the AJDs aren't operating on the same curve as the rest of the class, they have a huge advantage.

2) Not all of the AJDs took the LSAT, like the JD/MBAs, a GMAT score can be sufficient too.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby awesomepossum » Sun Sep 13, 2009 9:56 pm

I might be stating the obvious (and obviously I don't go to NU) but it seems like the issue is the timing of this. In a normal market, people probably wouldn't care that much. In a situation like we have right now, people don't like for anybody to get an unfair advantage (and possibly for themselves to get a disadvantage) and take away their future livelihood.

Right now, the ticky tack things are getting important....and NU 2Ls probably couldn't care less about how these 2 year students are going to someday enhance the prestige of the school.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby 2011 » Sun Sep 13, 2009 11:18 pm

As one of the current AJD students who did not participate in OCI (this means there are less than 27 competing with the 2Ls), let me clear-up a few things:

1) This is a tough market. NU students are not alone in having a large class in OCI. A number of law schools, including Yale, increased their class sizes this year in response to the economy. However, NU remains a relatively small law school minimizing competition between students. How would everyone feel if they were at Georgetown, Michigan or Virginia with MUCH larger classes?

2) While I can't possible know everything our well regarded Civil Procedure professor may have said this summer, I do know that he gave lots of grades well below a B+ to the AJD class. Any other assertion is completely false.

3) All of the professors said they graded on an implied curve. I don't know the exact median GPA of the class. But based on anecdotal evidence, I doubt that there is a statistically significant difference from the overall school media GPA (removal of the top or bottom few outliers would likely change the AJD median up or down to match the school median).

4) Even if the grading were slightly different, does anyone really think that employers compare one summer semester's grades of the AJDs as an equivalent indicator to the two semesters of grades and a summer of legal work experience they see with the 2Ls? If so, they really have a low opinion of the intelligence of the legal industry. AJD's primary asset is their extensive work experience, not their relatively minimal (as of now) law school GPA track record.

5) Nonetheless, if anyone really thinks a group of senior NU Law School professors graded the AJD's inappropriately, to the disadvantage of the three year JD's, they are essentially accusing them of academic dishonesty. This is a serious charge. I sincerely doubt faculty members would risk their hard earned-reputations (not to mention tenure) for something that would provide them with such minimal individual gain. But if anyone has any proof of this, I'd suggest they filing a complaint with the provost's office.

6) I'd also suggest considering that perhaps one of the reasons NU saw a smaller decline in firms recruiting at OCI than similar schools was, at least in part, do to some of its unique features such as the AJD program. Over time, programs like the AJD, and others which are likely to evolve in due course, will help to increase the prestige of the school and the value of all of our degrees.

If any three year JDs have questions, please feel free to contact me or other AJD's directly. Meanwhile, I think time is better spent studying and on an effective job search process than publicly ruminating on imagined harms caused by an institution whose reputation we all have every reason to want to protect.

Respectfully,

j-musey.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby awesomepossum » Sun Sep 13, 2009 11:29 pm

5) Nonetheless, if anyone really thinks a group of senior NU Law School professors graded the AJD's inappropriately, to the disadvantage of the three year JD's, they are essentially accusing them of academic dishonesty. This is a serious charge. I sincerely doubt faculty members would risk their hard earned-reputations (not to mention tenure) for something that would provide them with such minimal individual gain. But if anyone has any proof of this, I'd suggest they filing a complaint with the provost's office.




hahahahahahaha

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby bwv812 » Sun Sep 13, 2009 11:33 pm

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2011
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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby 2011 » Mon Sep 14, 2009 12:10 am

So, let me see if I understand your logic:

1) A small group of students (less than 10% of those in OCI when you take out the AJDs not doing OCI) MAY have a slightly different average GPA than the overall class for the one semester of grades they have.
2) If so, the difference MAY result in the AJD having a slightly higher GPA than the overall class.
3) If so, this MAY not be deserved based on their academic skills relative to the academic skills of the overall class (how would either of us know) and the professors were lying to us when they said they were mimicking/imputing the curve.
4) If so, some employers MAY not realize this. (most, I am told, do indeed realize AJD classes were not on a forced curve per say).
5) If so, the SOME firms MAY incorrectly rank an AJD student above a 2L.
6) If so, this difference MAY result in a lost summer internship with their preferred firm.
7) Even if there is absolutely NO PROOF of any of this, it is worth publicly criticizing the institution giving you the key credential for your career.

Seriously, I am getting frustrated, but if this is how you think, it might explain why you are not happy with your OCI results.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby bwv812 » Mon Sep 14, 2009 12:32 am

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 14, 2009 1:02 am

I couldn't help but notice this. But if transparency were the primary goal, NU Law would publish class rank and let companies select who to interview based on that ranking. Would you like this? For a number of reasons, primarily to reduce competition between students, but also to save the bottom half of the class (customers/investors), a certain lack of transparency is desirable to encourage recruiters to look beyond grades.

Even if the data you want were available, and lets say, that the AJD GPA is .1 higher, then what? Maybe they are smarter and really should be .3 higher. Or maybe they are dumber and should be .5 lower. It doesn't tell us anything. The best call is the probably judgment of the faculty members to normalize things as best they can. from what I read on this blog, that is exactly what happened.

Also, with the AJDs, recruiters have a lot more information than grades. According to NU Law, about 2/3 of them have graduate degrees and some even have Phds. Combined with an average of six years of work experience, I can't imagine a whole lot of weight is put on a summer semester of classes when comparing them to other students at NU law or elsewhere.

Finally, most recruiters have flexibility and call-back those who they like, within reason. People are competing less against those on a recruiter's schedule at one school than who they see across the T-14/T-20 market. Presumably this flexibility is why, in recent years, NU Law has been able to regularly to outperform higher ranked schools in placement.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 14, 2009 1:30 am

2011 wrote:6) I'd also suggest considering that perhaps one of the reasons NU saw a smaller decline in firms recruiting at OCI than similar schools was, at least in part, do to some of its unique features such as the AJD program. Over time, programs like the AJD, and others which are likely to evolve in due course, will help to increase the prestige of the school and the value of all of our degrees.



o plz. The AJD program is most certainly not NU's white knight. Career Services has done a lot of work to court employers; they're not coming here for the AJDs.


26 people can have a lot of impact. I've heard a few of the AJDs were particularly aggressive in asking to be squeezed into interview slots they didn't get with multiple employers in multiple markets, which translated into tons of callbacks. ( It's not hard to see how a 2L would feel like people with inflated GPAs were taking interviews they didn't really care about from people who really needed those callbacks.)

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby galaygobi » Mon Sep 14, 2009 2:23 am

Image

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bwv812
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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby bwv812 » Mon Sep 14, 2009 2:57 am

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Dick Whitman
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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby Dick Whitman » Mon Sep 14, 2009 8:37 am

Anonymous User wrote:26 people can have a lot of impact. I've heard a few of the AJDs were particularly aggressive in asking to be squeezed into interview slots they didn't get with multiple employers in multiple markets, which translated into tons of callbacks. ( It's not hard to see how a 2L would feel like people with inflated GPAs were taking interviews they didn't really care about from people who really needed those callbacks.)


How can you fault anyone for being aggressive in this economy or any other? Any what makes you think they don't care or need those interviews? Until you have an offer, it's tough to pass on any opportunity to interview.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby rayiner » Mon Sep 14, 2009 9:13 am

2011 wrote:Even if there is absolutely NO PROOF of any of this, it is worth publicly criticizing the institution giving you the key credential for your career.


There is a place for fawning, submissive deference. This isn't that place. There is nothing unreasonable or disrespectful about questioning whether the administration properly considered all the implications of instituting this new program. Indeed, with a novel program like this one, it'd be shocking if they got everything right the first time.

Frankly, this is a complicated problem, and it is in your interest, as a tuition-paying student, to see that it gets solved in a way that maximizes the fairness to everyone. Yes, fairness is something you won't always be able to expect in the real world, but when you're the one paying the bills (and not someone drawing a salary), your expectations of fairness go up substantially, and rightly-so.

That being said I can't figure out the best way to handle grading for the AJDs. Maybe the uncurved approach is best, who knows? Likely, after a few more AJD classes go through the process, the administration will have a better handle on what's going on.

EDIT: I'd agree with Dick Whitman here. Nobody has any obligation to schedule interviews in any way other than the way that benefits themselves the most. Not just ITE, but in any E.

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby Alexandria » Mon Sep 14, 2009 9:14 am

deleted bc should have read whole thread first :)

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Re: The New Northwestern AJD Program's Effect on OCI

Postby JustAnotherPoster » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:13 am

Dick Whitman wrote:How can you fault anyone for being aggressive in this economy or any other? Any what makes you think they don't care or need those interviews? Until you have an offer, it's tough to pass on any opportunity to interview.


I also agree with Dick Whitman. In a tough economy people are expected to be more agressive in their job search. If you just wait for a job to "fall in your lap" you could be waiting a long time. On the upside, you do attend a Top 10 lawschool so your prospects are MUCH better then other law students in the market.




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