Sunday, October 20, 2013

Numbers, Numbers, Numbers: Bright Young Persons and Retirement

Last week, I was part of our law school's team for the annual AALS Recruitment Conference, where prospective academics have a first wave of interviews with law schools, with everyone trapped in the same highrise hotel in Washington D.C.  Yikes. 

For a thoughtful analysis of how to succeed as an aspiring law professor, see a recent Stanford guide on "How to Get A Law Teaching Job."   For an amusing take on the interview experience, from the applicant's perspective, watch this video on "Stuff Appointments Committees Say."

Every academic should be required to participate in such interviews on a regular basis if for no reason other than it is an important reminder of just how much talent is out there, and by comparison, how important it is to stay on top of our games just to keep up.  Each of the candidates was bright, engaged, had umpteen top-notch publications, and concrete plans for the future. 

By the way, in preparing for the conference, I was interested to see resumes from a significant number of applicants who listed "elder law" as a specific teaching interest. 

As often happens after talking to the next generations of law professors, the older members of the current generation start talking about retirement.  And, in turn, during the last few years such conversations usually involve retirement "numbers."  As in, how much money do you need in order to retire safely?  

Of course, the law professor's traditional answer works well here.  "It depends."  A very concise, interesting, and still lawyerly take on the "numbers" game comes via the Huffington Post.  See "Retirement Planning with Just 3 Numbers"

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