Law schools could learn a lot from millennials. And frankly, they are already schooling us. They forced us to take notice by not applying for admission, harshly critiquing us on blogs and creating their own law school rankings. Some dissatisfied graduates have even sued their law schools for fraud in reporting job statistics (oh, the irony). They are some badasses. And they’re not about to change. Even when traditional law jobs return, we will still have a fundamental problem educating this generation (and their kids) as they become increasingly skeptical of the value of higher education.Insights like this are why Alabama is lucky to have this scholar of such law review articles as Street Cred. (from the abstract: "I propose that communities call for and legislatures implement a moratorium on the admissibility of certain types of law enforcement testimony in communities with strong levels of distrust of the police.")
"Millenials," after all, aren't just complaining because the economics of law school are whack, and these charging reformers will keep complaining WHEN (not "if") traditional legal jobs "return." Of course, you could also make law school cost-efficient regardless of jobs available. (Look up, smile, Pause for laughter!!). Anywho, there's something deeper that law schools have to hit on to appeal to these ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-changin' badasses.
Imagine if law schools had some of that millennial swagger, the confidence that bucks tradition and ventures out in order to move forward. How do we get there? By getting out into the real world.SAY IT AINT SO. Are law schools going to hire people with more than three-years of practice experience? Please, dear God, no! Maintain purity!
The solution is to send the policy makers — the tenured professors — into the real world. Doing so would breathe new life into our curricula and enhance our scholarship (even if fewer research leaves translates to less scholarship, what we do produce would be far more relevant and impactful). “Experience sabbaticals” funded by our schools (if necessary) to work in corporations, small businesses, law firms, nonprofits or government agencies should be normalized to give us fresh perspectives on the world that our students will face.
Phew! That was a close one. I thought she was going to say law schools need to hire people who actually have a decade of experience in the vulgar trenches of actually practicing law and know what real problems lawyers face without the future need of a "sabbatical." Law professors taking a sabbatical to go work at an exciting start-up or nonprofit, government agency, or even a choice law firm sounds like a great way for law professors to present the illusion that they're getting the experience they probably should have had before being offered a tenured faculty position in any rational set-up.
I've slipped into dreamland. Law professors will easily slide in and out of prosecutor positions, big firm litigation roles, in-house counsel positions, and nonprofits year in and year out, fully illustrating to their unemployed graduates that it's really easy to grab a cushy job if you're networked in and have possible school funding. And everyone in the private sector will gladly welcome law professors taking the most interesting and engaging legal work so that they can teach students who will never, ever do similar work. And clients will obviously be greatly helped by having a law professor swoop in for a 9-month period with the Midas touch of the prestigious academy.
Thank you, millenials, for being such badasses that law schools were forced to innovate and come up with such ideas in order to court you and your precious funding. We're making it better for you and your generation, even if our professors have to go out at work grueling 40-hour weeks at interesting legal jobs on your student loan dimes to make you happy.
We're here to please, kids. We really are.