Sunday, September 4, 2016

Law Enrollees Chugging Along Despite Public Skepticism

A hypothetical:

Critics say the nation has too many antiquated transportation systems, and you build a $50M steam locomotive railroad system and start charging $500 a credit-hour mile anyway.  The same critics lambaste your service and suggest anyone paying your exorbitant prices is a moron, but the customers show up, and in droves.

I think it's pretty clear that you were right and the critics are a bunch of misguided, naysaying dunderheads.

So why doesn't this logic apply to law schools?

Look at the University of North Texas - Dallas College of Law.  A chorus of Negative Nancys.  Accreditation problems.  Yet...
Two weeks into its third year, the UNT-Dallas College of Law reports a total enrollment of 387 students. That includes 145 first-year students, a slight increase from last year.

"I feel good about the numbers," Royal Furgeson, the school's dean, said this week. "We got a little more than we expected."
Yes, even in 2016, an unaccredited start-up law school can reel in 145 new students.  America doesn't need to be made great again; it's already there.

Meanwhile, in Indiana...

Indiana Tech is gaining in popularity.
Hilgenbrink is one of 55 incoming first-year law students who bring the law school’s total enrollment to about 85, Dean Charles Cercone said during the school’s August registration. The school is entering its fourth academic year. Classes began Aug. 22.

The goal was to enroll 50 new students, Cercone said. Recruitment by email and social media played a big role, but gaining provisional accreditation in March was even bigger.

“It has enhanced our ability to attract students,” Cercone said. 
Pessimists, you can cause delays in the Law School Express.  You can create hazards and mechanical breakdowns, damaged track segments and adverse weather.  You can try to sabotage the fuel shipments so the boilers run temporarily dry.  You can torch the train stations and yards.

But you cannot stop the Law School Express.  The people demand the service and the service will come.

Now it's up to the regulators - the good ol', reliable ABA - to take the free muffins and stay the fuck out of the way.


  1. When the easy, risk-free (for schools) Federal loan money stops, so too will the law school express.

  2. A painful point made, as there seems to be no shortage of people willing to attend these bottom rung schools. What, if anything, are the new enrollees thinking?


    "I can handle things. I'm smart. Not like everybody says. Like dumb. I'm smart! And I want respect!"

    Best illustrates the "mindset" of the cretins enrolling in this toilet.

  4. They are thinking they have nothing to lose and lots to gain. If they attend the gov't not only loans them tuition but enough money for living expenses. They probably live better than they would working for a living, considering the jobs they can get. If it works out and they get a high paying job, they are better off. If it doesn't work out, the gov't forgives their loans. The students are being perfectly rational given gradplus program. What's more, no wants to shut down the program. Not republicans who want to support their donors in for profit education and not democrats who want to support the people in public education who vote for them.

    1. Forgives their loans? I must be missing something-I thought that school loans were non-dischargeable, and the current loan forgiveness plans are predicated on some sort of income to pay the loan back-and a lot of these folks aren't going to get jobs.

    2. You are missing the way current repayment programs work. They are based on your income over the poverty line. If you have no job, you pay zero.

    3. Yes, but the debt doesn't magically disappear. It hangs around-literally for decades.

  5. I posted about this two years ago. There is a pool of individuals, tens of thousands, who cannot be reached, enough to keep law schools in business if they control their expenses. And don't mind their graduates inevitably failing the bar.

    My feeling is there is an inverse relationship between LSAT score and susceptibility to scams. Let's hope the DOE assumes the paternalistic role the ABA abandoned.

  6. Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance KingSeptember 6, 2016 at 3:37 PM

    Yugos, Aveos and Mitsubishi Mirages still have buyers. Folks are desperate for a new car and can't afford anything better. Everybody knows that. Many folks are desperate to be lawyers and can't get into a better school. Everybody knows that who hears their credentials. If they want to put a Yugo quality school on their resumes, that's on them.