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Spotlight on "Esq. Never" Writer: Also an Animator, A Latter Day Loyola 2L

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  • Spotlight on "Esq. Never" Writer: Also an Animator, A Latter Day Loyola 2L

    By Ashby Jones, WSJ Blogs

    Last month, in the wake of the news that LSAT applications had soared over the past year, I wrote a post cautioning against the knee-jerk response of many young people looking to cure their recession woes by heading off to law school.

    But all those for whom my post didn’t exactly do the trick might check out this story from the National Law Journal, out Monday. The article focuses similar types of messages zinging their way across the internet.

    Writes Karen Sloan, the article’s author:

    Those would-be lawyers should take a hard look at the benefits and drawbacks of spending three years and upward of $100,000 to get a law degree, the law school skeptics warn. Law schools should provide better statistics on student debt, career prospects and earning potential, according recent graduates and law school faculty. Potential applicants, they say, should not be blinded by the promise of $160,000 starting salaries — which only 23% of the class of 2008 secured, according to the National Association for Law Placement (NALP).
    Much of the problem, in the opinion of Indiana’s Bill Henderson, lies with law schools themselves, which often fail to provide incoming students with accurate information about job prospects of recent graduates.

    “The realities haven’t trickled down to the students,” Henderson said. “They all believe they are going to be in the top 10% of their class, and they have this vision of the profession that doesn’t exist. And law schools don’t try to dispel those myths to potential applicants.”

    The article focuses to a degree on a 2009 graduate of a second-tier law school who has not been able to find a legal job and now is looking for work in other fields. The author, a sort of latter day Loyola 2L, chronicles the struggles of his job search on his blog, Esq. Never, in which he also posts these strange little videos on the problem. (Part I of his series “A Law School Carol” is linked above.)

    Frankly, we found it hard to get past the computer-generated voices, but appreciated the message — that for many, graduating from law school is like being dropped off a cliff.

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