Disgruntled UConn law graduates

I’m sorry for them. I went there because, in 1978, they offered free tuition to Connecticut residents. These days, the students incur over $100,000 in debt. Bad choice. I was earning $25,000 as a salesman before attending, on my way to making $35,000. My first salary as a lawyer, three years later, was $22,000. Ouch.

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10 responses to “Disgruntled UConn law graduates

  1. Gwichy

    I love the quote from the dean,

    “Karen DeMeola, an assistant dean at UConn’s law school, said more students have been asking her recently whether they actually will land a job after graduation. ‘The reality is they may not get employed,’ she said. ”

    Is that disclaimer included in their slick, glossy recruitment brochures?

  2. EOS

    The 1973 movie The Paper Chase has been playing alot on cable lately. A classic flick that stands up as relevant today as it did back then. Well worth seeing, law school grad or not.

  3. Anonymous

    Presumably literate/numerate college grads seeking grad school would, in advance, diligence jobs/pay attained by recent grads

    Common Sense 101 clearly wasn’t learned at home during K-12

    No college will ever teach such common sense stuff as figuring out ROI and opportunity costs of its diploma in real world, where employers ultimately judge value of any “education”

  4. JRH

    Enough with the complaints about slicky glossy brochures misleading poor little 23 year olds into wasting their time and money. If you’re not wise enough to do the due diligence on whether or not law school is a good choice for you (cost of attending, loan repayment, odds of doing well in school, odds of landing a job), then you probably shouldn’t be a lawyer anyway.

    What we’re seeing now is the market doing what markets ought to do — correct something that is overvalued by creating a shortage. The pre-recession status quo, where law firms paid new grads $160,000 a year to do document review that a contract atty would gladly do for less than half of that, wasn’t sustainable. The industry needs a correction, and when it does, lawyers will be able to find jobs again. Maybe we have too many law schools and not enough schools producing primary care physicians, nurses, etc.

  5. Gwichy

    I agree that the legal industry is undergoing a correction. It should be noted, however, that both the law schools and students are ignoring the realities of today’s legal marketplace.

  6. JimP

    This monumental level of debt by the way is not dis-chargeable. You can’t get rid of it in bankruptcy.

    I’ve seen debt levels exceeding 150K and there doesn’t appear to be any way to shake that millstone – even in the case of one student dying they went after the parents who co-signed.

    With this many graduates unable to pay I’m guessing some type of debt forgiveness plan is eventually in the cards.

  7. JayDee

    Well even before the legal job market crapped out, many law students found out too late in the game that a J.D. doesn’t necessarily translate into a high-paying or even average-paying job. There are too many law schools and too many students–universities need only provide professors and classrooms and then start taking three years of extremely high tuition from as many students they can stuff into those classrooms. One can argue-and some do-that three years is also way too long for this vocational schooling.I certainly found that to be the case. How about two years and an apprenticeship? As far as due diligence, the law school candidate reads over and over about the latest high starting salary and can easily chalk up any bitching and moaning online (like this present comment) as just some loser’s sour grapes. Bottom line is that law schools are big money makers and the school administrations are just having a bit more trouble since the economy went south masking the truth that a lot of hopeful law students are just wasting their money. Happily, I went to law school as an older student with no intention of practicing in any traditional way. I felt sorry for my colleagues. PS: favorite job posting from our office of career services in 2005 was seeking an attorney (top of class, naturally) to work for 40K…and free parking. Oh, that was a good one.

    • JayDee, I enjoyed law school and am glad for the education but agree with you: too many of us -by far, and two years would have sufficed. But that was when I could attend at tax payers’ expense. $100,000 today? Bad deal.

  8. JayDee

    Sigh–I had classmate that had much more debt than that—100K would cover tuition and books, but they were getting loans for their food and rent in NYC, as well. Eek.

  9. out looking in

    what do you call 40,000 lawyers at the bottom of Long Island Sound? I just couldn’t resist- CF