Adjunct Law Prof Blog

Editor: Mitchell H. Rubinstein
New York Law School

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Best Small Cities For Recent Law School Graduates

Good Call recently ranked the top 100 best small cities for recent law school graduates. The top 10 are reproduced below. Their web site is full of helpful information and is available here.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

Hat Tip: Carrie Wiley


I. The Data

Below are the top 100 small cities for law graduates, out of a total list of 539:

RankCity (MSA)GoodCall ScorePopulationAverage Lawyer SalaryHousing Affordability IndexAmenities per 1,000 Housing UnitsEmployment Attractiveness Rank
1 Washington NC 487.25 47,585 $130,920 7.91% 2.37 20
2 Carlsbad-Artesia NM 474.9 56,395 $119,550 7.56% 2.91 41
3 Thomaston GA 463.75 26,256 $102,900 8.72% 8.38 57
4 Roswell NM 461.85 65,878 $119,550 7.09% 1.93 43
5 Laconia NH 451.4 60,305 $117,850 12.36% 9.39 10
6 Shelby NC 449.55 97,076 $105,680 8.72% 3.17 46
7 Barre VT 446.8 58,998 $106,700 13.00% 15.20 4
8 Canton IL 442.85 36,007 $99,160 9.18% 2.72 18
9 Fairbanks AK 438.2 99,357 $112,930 13.82% 6.31 6
10 Cheyenne WY 437.25 96,389 $109,540 11.01% 1.48 2

July 23, 2015 in Law Students, Lawyer Employment | Permalink | Comments (0)

Best Large Cities For Recent Lawyers

Good Call recently ranked the best large metro areas for new law school graduates. The top 10 are copied below, but their web site ranked the top 100 and provides additional information, here.

Hat Tip: Carrie Wiley

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

I. The Data

RankMetro AreaGoodCall ScorePopulationAverage Lawyer SalaryHousing Affordability IndexAmenities per 1,000 Housing UnitsEmployment Attractiveness Rank
1 New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA 279.10 20,092,883 $148,140 10.04% 2.74 5.00
2 Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT 278.30 945,438 $141,010 10.97% 5.21 22.00
3 Pittsburgh, PA 277.45 2,355,968 $122,220 7.48% 3.08 29.00
4 Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT 271.65 1,214,295 $120,900 10.00% 3.01 14.00
5 Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN 264.95 1,792,649 $107,440 9.85% 4.44 1.00
6 Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA 260.15 611,549 $109,650 9.09% 3.12 46.00
7 Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD 259.25 6,051,170 $126,100 10.00% 2.65 62.00
8 St. Cloud, MN 258.35 192,418 $107,070 8.56% 5.36 19.00
9 Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX 256.40 6,490,180 $150,720 7.78% 1.52 13.00
10 San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 255.90 4,594,060 $150,290 11.04% 2.16 4.00

July 23, 2015 in Law Students, Lawyer Employment | Permalink | Comments (1)

Monday, July 6, 2015

New York Adopts Uniform Bar Examination

In case you missed it (I did), New York recently announced that it will utilize a uniform bar examination that is in use in 15 states. A New York Times article about this change is available here

I am not so sure that this is a good idea. One of the flaws  in legal education today is that often times courses are just generalist type classes. Students may be reading cases from California in one lesson and reading New York cases in another. As a result, students graduate without having any grasp of the law in any particular state. Now, I recognize that there are exceptions-particularly with federal law, but even then the focus is rarely on the law of the circuit. 

This is just rehashing the old debate of national vs. regional law schools. Most students want to go to "national law schools." I also understand that many students may not practice in the state where their law school is located. But, I never believed that this makes much sense.  

There is no perfect solution. My view is that law schools should concentrate on the state law where most of their graduates practice. Therefore, it appears to follow that a bar examination based upon state law,  at least in part, makes sense.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

July 6, 2015 in Law Schools, Law Schools, News, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Chemerinsky on the Uniform Bar Exam

In an LA Times editorial yesterday, Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean of Cal-Irvine Law, urges California to adopt the standardized Uniform Bar Exam.  New York has recently done the same.

Craig Estlinbaum

May 12, 2015 in Bar Association Matters, Law Review Ideas, Law Students, Lawyer Employment, Lawyers | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, October 31, 2014

Student Loan Forgiveness

Students may find this site of interest.


Hat Tip: Lori Youngston

October 31, 2014 in Colleges, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, April 21, 2014

Job Market For Recent Law School Grads Improves-Alittle

Job Figures Show Improvement for New York Law Schools is an interesting April 18, 2014 NYLJ article
Read more:

As the article explains:

Members of the Class of 2013 from New York's 15 law schools are faring slightly better than their predecessors in finding jobs, and also better than their counterparts nationwide, according to entry-level employment data released last week by the American Bar Association.

The small boost came even though the nation's law schools graduated their largest class ever.

For the 5,009 graduates of New York's schools, 62.9 percent had found full-time, permanent jobs requiring bar passage as of Feb. 15, roughly a 3 percentage-point increase over last year. Nationwide, the 57 percent who secured such jobs was not much higher than 2012's 56.2 percent.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

April 21, 2014 in Law Schools, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (3)

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Attorneys and Depression

Brian Clarke (Charlotte) has written an extremely important and ultimately courageous post, "Law Professors, Law Students and Depression . . . A Story of Coming Out (Part 1)" at The Faculty Lounge on depression and anxiety's alarming incidence among attorneys.  Clarke relates some truly disturbing statistics on depression and suicide in the legal profession (emphasis in original):

Lawyers, as a group, are 3.6 times more likely to suffer from depression than the average person. Of 104 occupations, lawyers were the most likely to suffer depression.  (Both of these statistics are from a Johns Hopkins University study to which I cannot find a link). 

Further, according to a two-year study completed in 1997, suicide accounted for 10.8% of all deaths among lawyers in the United States and Canada and was the third leading cause of death.  Of more importance was the suicide rate among lawyers, which was 69.3 suicide deaths per 100,000 individuals, as compared to 10 to 14 suicide deaths per 100,000 individuals in the general population.  In short, the rate of death by suicide for lawyers was nearly six times the suicide rate in the general population. 

Clarke continues along this vein and introduces his own story fighting mental illness in this first in a three-part series on the subject. 

Some states have added a mental health component to the continuing legal education requirements, and many state bar associations have established hotlines and resources for attorneys battling mental illness.  The Texas Lawyers Assistance Program serves this latter function in Texas -- the Program's 24-hour hotline number is 1-800-343-8527. 

Craig Estlinbaum

April 1, 2014 in Blogs, Faculty, Ethics, Law Schools, Law Students, Lawyers | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Cleveland-Marshall: Master of Legal Studies Degree

Karen Sloan, National Law Journal, reports that Cleveland-Marshall will, "allow students who complete one year of studies but don't want to continue their l.egal educations to receive a master of legal studies degree." HT: Above the Law.

Craig Estlinbaum

March 19, 2014 in Law Schools, Law Schools, News, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, August 22, 2013

New York State’s Student Internship Program Offers Hundreds Of Internships

Source: New York State Department of Civil Service
Civil Service Commissioner Jerry Boone recently announced that New York State has hundreds of internships available, and reminded college students to apply for Fall semester internships before the application deadline on September 3, 2013.
New York State created a one-stop website at that allows students to view and apply for internship opportunities across an array of state agencies both downstate and upstate.
The website is one component of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’sNew New York Leaders initiative, which is focused on attracting new talent to state government through both a fellowship program and an internship program.  With the internship website, applicants can view job descriptions, create profiles, specify interests, and upload resumes, writing samples and letters of recommendation.  Students can apply for multiple internships at the same time.
“The internship program is designed to attract and mentor a new generation of talented leaders for New York State,” said Governor Andrew M. Cuomo.  “I continue to encourage talented college students to consider devoting time to public service while acquiring valuable skills and marketable work experience.”
“New York State continues to offer a wide variety of opportunities across numerous professional occupations,” said Civil Service Commissioner Jerry Boone.  “Governor Cuomo’s internship program offers opportunities for hands on experience in finance, engineering, public relations, information technology and health care, as well as a host of other professional disciplines.”
The program is open to resident graduate and undergraduate students as well as students who attend schools in other states, but reside in New York.  Opportunities include both paid and unpaid positions.  Internships may include academic credit depending on the policy of the educational institution.
Reprinted with permission New York Public Personnel Law
Mitchell H. Rubinstein

August 22, 2013 in Colleges, Law Schools, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (1)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Student Loan Debt in Bankruptcy

Karen Sloan at The National Law Journal reports on two recent failed efforts by debtors to discharge student loan debt in bankruptcy.  Sloan's story is here.

Craig Estlinbaum

July 18, 2013 in Federal Law, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Harvard Law Graduate at 22

Cortlan Wickliff, a native Texan and Rice University alum, has graduated from Harvard Law School at the ripe old age of 22.  Akilah Johnson at the Boston Globe has the full story.

Craig Estlinbaum

May 30, 2013 in Current Events, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Texas Tech Claims ABA Moot Court Title

Congratulations to Texas Tech law students Reagan Marble, Ashirvad Parikh and Suzanne Taylor for claiming the prestigious Amercian Bar Association National Appellate Advocacy Competition law week.  Tech bettered my alma mater, South Texas College of Law, in the championship round, which was held in Chicago.  The competition, which began with regional matches, included 225 teams from 129 schools in the U.S.A. 

Craig Estlinbaum


April 14, 2013 in Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, April 7, 2013

St. John's Labor and Employment Law Blog

SJU Center for Labor

For readers who do not know, St. John's Law School has a very comprehensive labor and employment law program. The program is run by Professor David Gregory. The faculty and the program are outstanding. The program is student centered and the focus is on learning practical skills. The students have formed a blog which focuses on labor and employment law and it is quite good. I recommend that you check it out, here.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

April 7, 2013 in Law Schools, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Law School Application Take A Dive

A recent NY Times article documents a 38% decline in law school applicants which would make a 38 year low, here. Why, increasing tuition and the decreasing amount of jobs. 

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

January 31, 2013 in Law Schools, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Vermont Buyouts and Other Law School News

This is a tough time to be a law school dean.  Consider Vermont Law School dean Marc Mihaly, who only four months into the job, is now facing a $3.3 million budget deficit.  With a  14% projected revenue decline on the horizon, Mihaly has announced a voluntary buyout for VLS staff which he says could be extended to faculty if there are not enough takers.  He also announced that VLS will increase its LL.M program and certificate offerings to make up for the revenue loss. Taja-Nia Henderson at Concurring Opinions, has some interesting comments on the problems and risks associated with law school faculty buyout programs.

Meanwhile, Penn State Law dean Philip McConnaughay, facing declining enrollment at the dual-campus school, has proposed to "spin off" the Carlisle campus into a separate, autonomous entity beginning in 2015.  This proposal came after state and local officials rejected his proposal to consolidatete the 1L program into the University Park campus.  Interestingly, Penn State acquired the Carlisle campus in only 12 years ago.

Ten new law schools that are either ABA accredited or seeking accreditation have opened the doors in the last ten years with new schools in Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana and Texas planning to open.  With enrollment declining and legal jobs paying enough to reasonably retire law school debt harder to find, it seems obvious that some industry restructuring, including possible consolidation or school closure, will occur.  We can expect more stories such as the ones coming out of Vermont and Pennsylvania as this process unwinds.

Craig Estlinbaum  


November 28, 2012 in Bar Association Matters, Colleges, Law Schools, Law Students, News | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Arizona: Tattoo Artists Enjoy Free Speech Protections

In an important free speech case yesterday, the Arizona Supreme Court held that tattooing is protected free speech under the First Amendment and Arizona's state constitution.  The case is Coleman v. City of Mesa, No. CV-11-0351 (September 7, 2012).

Plaintiffs in the case sued the City after being denied a permit to open a tattoo parlor.  The city's controlling ordinance effectively bans certain specified uses, including tattoo parlors, unless the city council grants a permit for the use.  The Supreme Court, after finding tattooing to be constitutionally protected expression, held the city's permitting scheme vested unbridled discretion in city officials and failed the First Amendment's time, place and manner test.  The Court reversed the trial court's dismissal for failure to state a claim and returned the case to that court for further proceedings.

The Arizona Court considered three approaches to the issue:  (1) tattooing is purely expressive activity fully protected by the First Amendment; (2) tattooing is non-expressive activity not First Amendment protected; and (3) categorization on a case-by-case basis.  Notably, the Court cited a student comment, Ryan J. Walsh, Comment, Painting on a Canvass of Skin: Tattooing and the First Amendment, 78 U. Chi. L. Rev. 1063 (2011), for the third approach.

Craig Estlinbaum

September 8, 2012 in Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, First Amendment, Interesting Cases, Law Students, Recent Developments | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Becoming A Lawyer Blog

I just came across Becoming A Lawyer, a blog by law school publisher Wolters Kluwer-one of the giants in law school publishing. It provides helpful information to prospective law students. For example, the article I just read is about being a law student and a parent at the same time. If your a college student thinking about law school and even if your a 1 L, you may want to check this blog out.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

August 22, 2012 in Blogs, Faculty, Blogs, General, Blogs, Legal, Colleges, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (1)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Federal Court Dismisses Fraud Case Against Cooley Law School

MacDonald, Jr. v. Thomas M. Cooley Law School, ____F.Supp.2d____(W.D. Mich. July 20, 2012), is the second case where a court has dimissed a fraud type of suit brought by former law students against a law school. The other case is  Gomez-Jimenez v. New York Law School, No. 65226/11 (NY Sup. Ct. Mar. 21, 2012), which we previously reported on. 

The claim was that the 2010 Employment Report and Salary Survey was fraudlent. In granting a motion to dismiss, the court explained:

                This Court agrees with Judge Schwietzer, a judge for the New York Supreme Court in a nearly                 identical case, for some of the reasons he discusses as to why reliance upon the two                 statistics would be unreasonable.  See Gomez-Jimenez v. New York Law Sch., Index                 No.652226/11, Seq. No. 002, Decision and Order (N.Y.S.Ct. Mar. 21, 2012) (Def.’s                 Supplemental Br. Ex. 1). This Court does not necessarily agree that college graduates The                 State of New York’s trial court. Case 1:11-cv-00831-GJQ  Doc #54 Filed 07/20/12 are                 particularly sophisticated in making career or business decisions.  Sometimes hope and                 dreams triumph over experience and common sense.  Nevertheless, it would be unreasonable                 for Plaintiffs to rely on two bare-bones statistics in deciding to attend a bottom-tier law                 school with the lowest admission standards in the country. In addition, “[i]t is widely                 accepted that American law schools,
                Cooley included, employ all sorts of legerdemain to boost employment rates in a                 contracting legal market” (Pls.’ Resp. at 5); once again, Plaintiffs state that they had other                 reasons to not rely upon the Employment Reports.  Furthermore, whether before or during                 Plaintiffs’ attendance at Cooley,it would have been unreasonable to continue to rely on the                 Employment Reports because of theeconomy’s massive downfall, which hit the legal business                 as hard as any.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

Hat Tip: TaxProf Blog

July 23, 2012 in Law Schools, Law Schools, News, Law Students, Lawyer Employment, Lawyers, Legal News | Permalink | Comments (1)

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

South Texas College of Law Sweeps Writing Awards

From the South Texas College of Law website:

June 27, 2012 - For the first time in the history of the prestigious American Society of Legal Writers’ Scribes competition, one school took first, second, and third place: South Texas College of Law. The Scribes award is given to authors of the best written legal brief submitted in a national moot court advocacy competition this past academic year. South Texas students authored eight of the 68 briefs entered in the competition. This is the 5th time South Texas has won first place in the competition—no other law school in the U.S. has won it more than once. “The Scribes Award is recognized by all academics as the gold standard for legal writing,” says Associate Dean and Director of Advocacy T. Gerald Treece. “These briefs are judged anonymously and three of ours were the best of best from across the country.”

Formal presentation will be made on August 3 at the Scribes' annual luncheon during the ABA Annual Meetings in Chicago.  Congratulations to winning authors and to Dean Treece and the South Texas advocacy program for this impressive sweep.

Craig Estlinbaum

July 3, 2012 in Announcements, Colleges, Law Students | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, June 8, 2012

Breaking News NALP Releases Job Stats on Class of 2011 and it's Brutal

The headline in a June 8, 2012 article published by Inside Higher Education says it all. "Brutal" Job Market For New Law Grads.  It reports on a National Association of Law Placement or NALPA study which shows that 85.6% of law school graduates are employed 9 months after graduation. But get this, only 64.4% are employed in jobs for which bar passage is required. The NALAP press release is here. A copy of NALPA's selected findings, which provides much more detail is available here. The full report will not be released until August 2012. Note, the ABA maintains a statistical data on placement stats at each law school, but the 2011 data is not yet included. 

This is disgraceful. This is coming at a time when the median law school tuition is $39,496 at private schools, $35,765 for non-residents at public schools and $19,788 for resident students at public schools, here

These students are being taught by full-time faculty who are, for the most part, incompetent to practice law. The situation is particularly accute with recent law school full time faculty hiring.  Most full-time faculty members never practiced law for any substanial period of time. They may have a post-JD degree and an appellate clerkship, but very few have practiced law or represented a client for more than 5 years. This is because law schools are concerned with academic credentials as opposed to practical experience. 

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

June 8, 2012 in Law Schools, Law Students, Lawyer Employment | Permalink | Comments (0)