Tuesday, October 21, 2014
The Dental School Model for Law Schools Future
In the 1970's and 1980's dental schools experienced a decline in applicants very similar to what law schools have been experiencing. Several universities closed their dental schools - including Georgetown, Loyola Chicago, and Fairleigh Dickinson (NJ). Absent an unanticipated surge in law school applications - which could only follow a substantial uptick in jobs - law schools are in for an era of reduced enrollment and threats to solvency. Independent schools will be hit hardest, but university-based schools will also find the limits of what their hosts are willing to pay in subsidies. - gwc h/t Legal Ethics Forum
The Legal Whiteboard:
"By Jerry Organ
For four consecutive years we have seen a decline in the number of applicants to law school and a corresponding decline in the number of matriculating first-year students. Over the last year or two, some have suggested that as a result of this “market adjustment” some law schools would end up closing.
Most recently, the former AALS President, Michael Olivas, in response to the financial challenges facing the Thomas Jefferson Law School, was quoted as stating that he expects several law schools to close. To date, however, no law schools have closed (although the Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School recently announced the closure of its Ann Arbor branch).
Have law schools found ways to cut costs and manage expenses in the face of declining revenues such that all will remain financially viable and remain in operation? Is it realistic to think that no law schools will close?
Although there may be a number of people in the legal academy who continue to believe that somehow legal education is “exceptional” – that market forces may impose financial challenges for law schools in the near term, but will not result in the closing of any law schools -- this strikes me as an unduly optimistic assessment of the situation. To understand why, I think those in legal education can learn from the experience of those in dental education in the 1980s. The Dental School Experience from 1975-1990"
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