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Life is Good at UCI Law... But How Long Will It Last? - (

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  • Life is Good at UCI Law... But How Long Will It Last? - (

    The news out on Thursday is this: Everyone out at the UC-Irvine School of Law has a job lined up for this summer. Click here for the Recorder story.

    Any way you slice it, it’s impressive. Of the 60 students currently enrolled at the school, 30 of them will work with nonprofits, 17 with judges, and the rest with law firms and prosecutors’ offices.

    For now, those students are living the dream. They’re employed (at least for the summer), they’re all rocking it tuition free, and they all live within a hop-and-a-skip from Angel Stadium, home to the most lovable team in baseball. Plus, there are a zillion In-n-Out Burgers within a 10-mile radius of the Irvine campus.

    Can it last? It’s possible. But continuing success won’t come without some challenges. For starters, the free-tuition deal sticks with the first class all the way through their three years, but ends with the second class, which starts in the fall. So it wouldn’t be surprising to see the caliber of the students drop a little for the next class, which could drive employment rates down.

    Furthermore, while public interest jobs can be tough to get, summer internships are considerably easier to land when 1) you don’t have to worry about tuition for the next couple of years and 2) your law school is giving you cash stipends so you can make ends meet.

    To his credit, Charles Cannon, the law school’s assistant dean of development and external affairs, seems to realize that the gettin’ might not always be this good.

    “There’s no doubt that our complete tuition rebate for the first class has made the proportion of them going into unpaid public interest jobs much higher than other schools,” Cannon said. “We know that this won’t last forever.”

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