Friday, June 22, 2012
While many of you were off to the LSAC ASP conference in Denver, a handful of us were in Washington, DC for PLANC (Pre-Law Advisors National Conference). As much as I would have loved to attend both conferences, I could not. I was invited to speak on professionalism at PLANC, and I had accepted the invitation in January.
Here is an update on things of relevance to ASPer's that happened at PLANC:
The unintentional, unavoidable focus for the conference centered on jobs, placement stats, and employablity of graduates. While this might not seem to be of immediate interest to ASPer's, there was an acknowledgement of the immense pressure to pass the bar on the first try. In the past, the bar pass issues have revolved around ABA accreditation. This year, bar pass was stressed because failure to pass the bar on the first try can kill any chances of a legal career. This should make more students amenable to early bar prep, and more focused during post-graduate bar prep.
One thing always stand out during PLANC and APLA meetings: how many pre-law professionals are not JD's. This has implications for ASP because the type of pre-law professional a student works with before matriculation can result in different first-year studying habits. Pre-law professionals who handle multiple types of students (pre-law, pre-health professions, grad school prep), who focus only on the application process, or focus on career prep have a different focus than pre-law professionals whose sole purpose is to prepare pre-law students for law school. If you are an ASPer at a school that has feeder undergraduate institutions (a feeder institution is any one school that supplies your class with more than 10% of your incoming 1L's) should reach out to the pre-law professionals at those schools to talk about what information those students have about the rigors of law school academics.