From today’s New York Times, Downturn Dims Prospects Even at Top Law Schools.
This fall, law students are competing for half as many openings at big firms as they were last year in what is shaping up to be the most wrenching job search season in over 50 years.
There’s not much I can add to that, but you really should read the entire article. Law school is an investment on the order of $100,000 - $150,000. You need to scrutinize carefully what kind of return that investment is likely to yield, at this particular moment in history. As this article makes clear, the law world is changing dramatically over the next few years, and while it’s anybody’s guess what it will eventually look like, it’s clear that the biggest law firms are very likely to become a lot smaller. The most direct impact is on the large law firms in New York, Boston, Washington, Chicago and San Francisco, but regional firms and government employers will be caught in the ripple effect.
This works to the advantage to those attending regional law schools—those “lower ranked” schools have far stronger placement programs and alumni connections in the regional firms they’ve worked with for years. As one of the students quoted in the article says,
“Had I seen where the market was going, I would’ve gone to a lower-ranked but less expensive public school,” she said.