The Wall Street Journal recently presented an opinion piece that says that if you’re thinking about going to law school, you might be making a huge mistake.
“Nationally there are twice as many graduates as there are jobs,” Chris Fletcher wrote. ”The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the economy will provide 21,880 new jobs for lawyers annually between 2010 and 2020; law schools since 2010, however, have produced more than 44,000 graduates each year.”
But not everyone in the profession is in agreement with this expectation. Notably, one of those most vocal about convincing us to continue sending our kids to law school is Lawrence Mitchell, Dean of the Case Western Reserve School of Law. Never mind that Dean Mitchell has a direct economic incentive to get more students to go to law school. But the dean says that the media is responsible for exaggerating data in such a way that future lawyers of tomorrow are backing away from their god-given mission to fill up the court rooms.
“It’s not clear to me there’s an oversupply problem at all,” Mitchell said in a recent interview with Bloomberg.
Dean Mitchell makes the valid point that the job supply issue can be partially mitigated by looking for jobs outside the biggest law firms. But the demand for legal services has dropped .8 percent, which might be further validation for those who believe that aspiring attorneys might want to run for the hills.
Some of the students leaving law school without jobs are flat out angry over high tuition bills and massive student loans that they are now unable repay as a result of their educational journey. One student wrote a nasty open letter to the University of Buffalo law school, stating that he feels that universities “fiscally rape” their students for personal gain. Maybe he should go file a lawsuit.