How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

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minnbills
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How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby minnbills » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:16 pm

I did some calculations today and figured out that in MN, the number of graduates for the class of 2015 (across all schools) will be ~550, while the past few years have seen numbers between 800-900. This doesn't account for graduates coming into the state from outside school or students leaving.

Will this have an effect on the market?

I figure there may be less applicants per position for postings, but I'm also not sure how many positions are simply done by referral or created for a candidate outright, for these cases the total number of available candidates is less relevant.

Anyone want to weigh in? I imagine something similar is happening in other markets.

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gaud
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby gaud » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:32 pm

Also interested in what people may have to say

Gorki
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby Gorki » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:41 pm

minnbills wrote:I did some calculations today and figured out that in MN, the number of graduates for the class of 2015 (across all schools) will be ~550, while the past few years have seen numbers between 800-900. This doesn't account for graduates coming into the state from outside school or students leaving.



From Minn. and did not know this. It seems that a lot of firms in MN were cutting back this year, but it sounds like this was nationwide. Hopefully whatever the firms are fearing does not come to be, but who knows.

I guess it will be best for the c/o 2015 and beyond (assuming the numbers stay low) and more of us Pre-2015ers will end up finding jobs elsewhere, or end up having to leave the field.

I always thought Minnesota was unique in that Twin Cities is not really a huge metropolitan area at all, but we have four freaking schools churning out grads.

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Tom Joad
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby Tom Joad » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:42 pm

gaud wrote:Also interested in what people may have to say

Economist people reveal yourselves.

Wakelaw15
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby Wakelaw15 » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:53 pm

Not an economist, but my guess is that it will help regional employment more than major market employment. NYC, SF, Chicago, LA, etc. are flooded with qualified applicants. I think regional markets will be better for local graduates + T14 grads with ties.

dissonance1848
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby dissonance1848 » Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:59 pm

Depends. Larger law firms, which rely on class rank as proxies (only reliable metric), will take marginally more students from the MN schools, but it won't correspond equally student for position, because of the ranking system. For firms not doing ranking system schemes, assuming similar number of jobs, more students will get jobs, leading to better employment outcomes.

As for the national legal market, basically irrelevant. There will be perhaps 2-3000 fewer enrolled 1Ls this year. At the T14, the cuts of 10% here and there will lead to better employment outcomes at the margins (reduce class by 10%, increase number with jobs by say 5%)

But as you go down the schools by placement power, the reduction in class size will have less impact.

With over 40000 graduates from 2015 vying for perhaps 22000 openings, it will still be hell.

Class sizes have to be cut by half across all schools, or around 55-65% of schools would need to close (significant discrepencies exist in class size across schools).
Last edited by dissonance1848 on Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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rayiner
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby rayiner » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:02 pm

Classes will have to be cut by more. Prior to the recession, BLS estimated about 25,000 new lawyer jobs per year over the next 10 years. There are 45,000 graduates each year.

Wakelaw15
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby Wakelaw15 » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:13 pm

rayiner wrote:Classes will have to be cut by more. Prior to the recession, BLS estimated about 25,000 new lawyer jobs per year over the next 10 years. There are 45,000 graduates each year.


This number is going to be lower for class of 2015. 40,000? 35,000? no one knows yet. The class sizes are smaller and given the information and awareness of the job market there is a good chance attrition will be higher (I'd be surprised if this wasn't the case).

dissonance1848
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby dissonance1848 » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:32 pm

Unless schools cut classes by way more than current standards (10-20%), then there will be around 40000 1Ls for 2015 Class.

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minnbills
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby minnbills » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:34 pm

Also, I pulled the wrong numbers. It's: 737 for 2015, with 884 for 2011. The final number for 2015 will be lower after attrition at WM, Hamline, and UST though.

Soooo yeah not as big a deal, but at least there is some evidence that the market is correcting.

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ThreeRivers
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby ThreeRivers » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:53 pm

minnbills wrote:I did some calculations today and figured out that in MN, the number of graduates for the class of 2015 (across all schools) will be ~550, while the past few years have seen numbers between 800-900. This doesn't account for graduates coming into the state from outside school or students leaving.

Will this have an effect on the market?

I figure there may be less applicants per position for postings, but I'm also not sure how many positions are simply done by referral or created for a candidate outright, for these cases the total number of available candidates is less relevant.

Anyone want to weigh in? I imagine something similar is happening in other markets.

A bigger worry for me in MN is how drastically worse class of 2011 was than class of 2010 was... Wish we already knew how classes of 2012,2013 OCI's went...

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minnbills
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby minnbills » Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:12 pm

well c/o 2011 went through OCI in summer of 2009, so it makes sense there would be a drop off from c/o 2010, which had a bit more breathing room with the economy.

It'll be interesting to see how '12 and '13 did, for sure. I was under the impression firms were expanding their summer classes and other employers were starting to hire again, that also seemed to be the trend on the NALP report cards for minneapolis, others are contradicting that though.

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Nova
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby Nova » Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:20 pm

50 less grads can only mean good things for UMNs class of 2015. How good, idk.

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IAFG
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby IAFG » Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:27 pm

Wakelaw15 wrote:
rayiner wrote:Classes will have to be cut by more. Prior to the recession, BLS estimated about 25,000 new lawyer jobs per year over the next 10 years. There are 45,000 graduates each year.


This number is going to be lower for class of 2015. 40,000? 35,000? no one knows yet. The class sizes are smaller and given the information and awareness of the job market there is a good chance attrition will be higher (I'd be surprised if this wasn't the case).

But the 25,000 could be lower too [edit: since it's a pre-recession statistic, I am sure it is lower. Much lower.). I doubt it will tighten up enough to really make things easier at top schools or anywhere else.

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sunynp
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby sunynp » Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:51 pm

I know I posted this in another thread, so sorry for repeating. But the most recent BLS numbers ( calculated as including a recovery) show 21,880 openings for attorneys per year for the next ten years. Note that these openings include all job openings, including part time, temporary, people hanging out their own shingle, etc. These are not all full-time permanent jobs. I don't know what the BLS number is for full-time permanent jobs as I don't think they make that distinction, but it is much less than the 25,000 figure posted above in this thread.

These numbers were discussed by Deborah Merritt, a professor from Ohio State who has been posting with Campos on inside the law school scam.

http://insidethelawschoolscam.blogspot. ... m-bls.html

I know people understand that class sizes are decreasing because mostly the smart money (ie high LSAT scores) are opting out of going to law school. I'm sure it isn't just the high LSAT scorers but it seems like more of the high scores are ending up not going. So class sizes are going down because people are beginning to understand the realities of the employment market, in large part because of efforts by groups like LST to force school to publish more accurate data. It is no surprise to me that as soon as more accurate numbers became available (combined with the more widely available info on freezes in government and PI hiring), people stopped seeing law school as a good investment of time and 6 figures of cash/debt.

So, the classes are smaller because people realize that there are not nearly enough jobs to justify the cost. Even with these reductions, there are still going to be more than twice as many grads for even the BLS optimistic statistics that include crappy jobs.

(edit to add: There were some comments that the BLS numbers are overly optimistic because they are based in part on retirement patterns that may not hold true for the shitboomer class. Many government attorneys are working as long as possible for benefits and so are other people who work for themselves. I know many firms have a mandatory retirement age for partners, so I'm not sure how this aspect of the calculation of possible job openings will actually play out. Just know that this retirement calculation might be high as well, meaning the number of job openings will be even lower.)
Last edited by sunynp on Thu Sep 20, 2012 12:10 am, edited 2 times in total.

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sunynp
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby sunynp » Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:58 pm

minnbills wrote:I did some calculations today and figured out that in MN, the number of graduates for the class of 2015 (across all schools) will be ~550, while the past few years have seen numbers between 800-900. This doesn't account for graduates coming into the state from outside school or students leaving.

Will this have an effect on the market?

I figure there may be less applicants per position for postings, but I'm also not sure how many positions are simply done by referral or created for a candidate outright, for these cases the total number of available candidates is less relevant.

Anyone want to weigh in? I imagine something similar is happening in other markets.


Do you have a calculation of the SA jobs that were available in your market for the past two summers? It should be easy to add that up from NALP data if you know which firms you are including in your market. Your career service might have data on the other jobs that people got last summer in your market that were not covered by NALP. I think knowing how many jobs are available in your market is a key piece of information, even though you might have to guess a little depending on what happens year to year with the economy, you can probably figure a range. I think 0Ls should calculate this number before they even go to school. But I don't think many people actually know that they should look at job data in their market until after they are already in school.

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thelawyler
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby thelawyler » Thu Sep 20, 2012 12:06 am

I think with the slight decrease in classes in the good schools, we can see probably a 5% easier shot at getting those biglaw jobs, but a 5% increase in chances is so insignificant that nobody will be able to tell the difference in any practical way.

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minnbills
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby minnbills » Thu Sep 20, 2012 8:45 am

sunynp wrote:
minnbills wrote:I did some calculations today and figured out that in MN, the number of graduates for the class of 2015 (across all schools) will be ~550, while the past few years have seen numbers between 800-900. This doesn't account for graduates coming into the state from outside school or students leaving.

Will this have an effect on the market?

I figure there may be less applicants per position for postings, but I'm also not sure how many positions are simply done by referral or created for a candidate outright, for these cases the total number of available candidates is less relevant.

Anyone want to weigh in? I imagine something similar is happening in other markets.


Do you have a calculation of the SA jobs that were available in your market for the past two summers?


I've calculated the numbers before, not sure where I put them though. They aren't high numbers. It's hard to tell though because there a bunch of firms for whom NALP has no data.

Gorki
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby Gorki » Thu Sep 20, 2012 8:57 am

It is really safe for this year at least to cap off all the non-NALP firms MN at 2 SA positions, but this is more likely 1 at most of the firms outside the top 10 (in MN). Given there is no other way to get this information, going off what each recruiter/screener has told me seems to be the best way to go.

EDIT: The competition from t14s at the non-NALPs does not seem to be AS fierce as our NALP firms, but it exists. For the non-NALP I think you could roughly gauge competition (# of applicants) by adding in the number equivalent to the class sizes at UW-Madison and UI College of Law. Only way to really find out is to call HR at every single firm offering a summer job and ask how many people applied...

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minnbills
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby minnbills » Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:17 am

Gorki wrote:It is really safe for this year at least to cap off all the non-NALP firms MN at 2 SA positions, but this is more likely 1 at most of the firms outside the top 10 (in MN). Given there is no other way to get this information, going off what each recruiter/screener has told me seems to be the best way to go.

EDIT: The competition from t14s at the non-NALPs does not seem to be AS fierce as our NALP firms, but it exists. For the non-NALP I think you could roughly gauge competition (# of applicants) by adding in the number equivalent to the class sizes at UW-Madison and UI College of Law. Only way to really find out is to call HR at every single firm offering a summer job and ask how many people applied...


That makes a lot of sense, but now I'm depressed.

Honestly if I could just get A decent job with a law firm or any clerkship I'll be a happy man.

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I.P. Daly
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby I.P. Daly » Thu Sep 20, 2012 12:14 pm

Cooley is taking advantage by starting new campuses.

MNbound
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby MNbound » Mon Sep 24, 2012 6:00 pm

You probably wouldn't have to worry about the specifics of your chances of landing biglaw in MSP if you just went to WM or St. Thomas on a full scholarship...

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IAFG
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby IAFG » Mon Sep 24, 2012 6:01 pm

MNbound wrote:You probably wouldn't have to worry about the specifics of your chances of landing biglaw in MSP if you just went to WM or St. Thomas on a full scholarship...

You also wouldn't have to worry about the hours or stress of biglaw.

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minnbills
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Re: How will decreased class sizes affect the employment market?

Postby minnbills » Mon Sep 24, 2012 8:52 pm

MNbound wrote:You probably wouldn't have to worry about the specifics of your chances of landing biglaw in MSP if you just went to WM or St. Thomas on a full scholarship...


lololol point taken, but IAFG is right as well . . . Hope Billy Mitchell is treating you well man




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