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Professor Jerry Organ University of St. Thomas School of Law (MN)

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Presentation on theme: "Professor Jerry Organ University of St. Thomas School of Law (MN)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Professor Jerry Organ University of St. Thomas School of Law (MN)

2 NALP – Aggregated employment and salary data. ABA – School-specific and more granular employment data ABA – Proposed reporting format for schools – apples to apples comparisons

3 ABA published in March the school-specific employment data for 2010 graduates. ABA will be publishing shortly the school- specific employment data for 2011 graduates. This is presented in an excel spreadsheet that can be downloaded easily and can be sorted by any number of categories – unknown, unemployed seeking, unemployed not seeking, employed bar passage required, employed law school funded, etc.

4 Unknown – the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates whose employment status is unknown range from 1.7% to 2.5% and the bottom 20 schools are all at 0. Unknown – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates whose employment status is unknown range from 8.8% to 26.2%. What does this tell us? At a subset of schools, generally in the fourth tier, a significant number of graduates are disinterested in supporting the schools efforts to develop as robust a data set as possible. Presumptively unemployed?

5 Unemployed seeking – the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who are unemployed and seeking employment range from 4.9% to 6.6% and the bottom 20 schools range from 0 to 1%. Unemployed seeking– the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who are unemployed and seeking employment range from 14% to 30%, all but three of which are in the fourth tier. What does this tell us? At a subset of schools, generally in the fourth tier, a significant number of graduates are struggling to find gainful employment.

6 Unemployed not seeking – the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who are unemployed and not seeking work is 2.1% to 2.6% and the bottom 20 schools are all at 0. Unemployed not seeking – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who are unemployed and not seeking range from 6.1% to 18%, with four schools over 10%. What does this tell us? A relatively small subset of schools appears to have an unusually large number of graduates not seeking employment. This will be interesting to track over time. The top 20 schools for unemployed not seeking include a few top 50 schools and several top 100 schools.

7 Law School Funded – the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates whose employment was law school funded ranged from 1.2% to 1.8% and the bottom 20 schools are all at 0. Law School Funded – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates whose employment was law school funded ranged from 10.6% to 19% What does this tell us? Most of the top 20 schools were actually in the top 100 with nine in the top 50. While these schools are supporting their graduates, one has to look at their employment numbers with a little more skepticism given that they are subsidizing the market.

8 Solo Practice – the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates in solo practice range from 1.9% to 2.8% and the bottom 20 schools are all at 0 (15 of which are top 50 schools). Solo Practice – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who are engaged in solo practice range from 6.9% to 18.3%. What does this tell us? At a subset of schools a significant number of graduates are jumping into solo practice straight out of law school. While these are mostly fourth tier schools, the list includes schools across the spectrum. These schools may want to be focusing on providing specific support for this set of graduates.

9 Firm Size 2-10– the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were in small firms – 2-10 – range from 17.9% to 20.2% and the bottom 20 schools are from 5.7% to 0.3% (all top 50 schools). Firm Size 2-10 – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were employed with firms of 2-10 range from 31.3% to 40.8% (none are top 50 schools). What does this tell us? A significant number of schools are placing one out of six graduates up to two out of five graduates in small firms. This is the mode at many schools and perhaps should be the educational focus at such schools.

10 Firm Size – the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were in small firms – – range from 1.6% to 1.9% and the bottom 20 schools are all at 0 (predominantly fourth tier schools). Firm Size – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were employed with firms of range from 3.7% to 9.4% (15 of which are top 100 schools). Similar numbers for and , except that top 20 schools increasingly are top 50 schools. What does this tell us? The vast majority of schools are placing very few people even in medium sized firms of let alone or – 180 schools have fewer than 3.7% of grads in medium-sized firms.

11 Firm Size 501+– the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were in very large firms – 501+ – range from 1.6% to 2.4% and the bottom 20 schools are all at 0 (predominantly fourth tier schools). Firm Size 501+– the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were employed with very large firms range from 19.6% to 60.4% (all top 50 schools). Fewer than one-third of schools had more than 5% of their graduates going to very large firms. What does this tell us? There is a bifurcated market – lower ranked schools feed smaller firms while higher ranked schools feed very large firms.

12 Federal clerkships– the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who had federal clerkships range from 1.2% to 1.7% and the bottom 20 schools are all at 0 (and are primarily fourth tier schools). Federal clerkships – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who had federal clerkships range from 6.7% to 30% (almost all are top 50 schools). Only 10% of schools had 5% of their graduates in federal clerkships. What does this tell us? As with big firms this suggests a bifurcated market.

13 State clerkships– the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who had state clerkships range from 3.3% to 4% and the bottom 20 schools are between 0 and 0.6 %(and are primarily fourth tier schools). State clerkships – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who had state clerkships range from 12.3% to 30.3% (with the three NJ schools running 25% or more). What does this tell us? 15 of the schools in the top 20 are state schools, suggesting that state schools may be more likely feeder schools for state clerkships. Almost no top 50 schools are in the top 20 for state clerkships.

14 Business -- the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were working in business range from 12.6% to 13.9% and the bottom 20 schools are all between 5.9% and 1.6% (and are primarily top 50 schools). Business – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were working in business 20.5% to 30.3% (none are top 50 schools). What does this tell us? As with big firms this suggests a bifurcated market. This is still murky data as the 2010 data did not include a breakdown of part-time or full-time positions. There is long-term/short-term data, but I have not gotten that sophisticated in my analysis yet.

15 Government – the middle 20 schools for graduates who were working in government range from 9.7% to 10.5% and the bottom 20 schools are all between 5.2% and 1.2% (and are primarily top 20 schools and fourth tier schools). Government – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were working in government range from 17.4% to 29.4% (a broad mix of schools). What does this tell us? A large number of schools have a significant percentage of graduates employed in government. But some schools do have far more than the norm or far fewer than the norm.

16 Public Interest – the middle 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were working in public interest range from 4.5% to 5.1% and the bottom 20 schools are all between 1.8% and 0% (and are primarily top 50 schools)(and are mostly fourth tier schools). Public Interest – the top 20 schools for percentage of graduates who were working in public interest generally range from 9.9% to 18.8% with one school at 33.3% (this was a broad mix of schools). What does this tell us? There are some schools that clearly place a greater emphasis on public interest positions. For students interested in public interest, that is something worth considering

17 Most law schools are local – their graduates are employed in-state or in a neighboring state. On average, two-thirds of employed graduates are employed in the state in which the law school is located. 120 schools had at least two-thirds of employed graduates employed in the state in which the law school is located. For 140 schools, at least two of the top three states in which their graduates are employed are the state of the law school and a neighboring state. Moreover, for the vast majority of states, the top feeder schools are schools in the state or in a neighboring state.

18 The ABA did not gather salary information. NALP continues to gather salary information. NALPs national average salary for all attorneys tends to overstate the average because of disproportionate reporting by those in higher salary categories. But for any given category of employment, NALP has several hundred responses, suggesting that the average within a category is fairly accurate for that category.

19 So what if you took NALPs average salary per category on a national basis and applied those averages to the number of graduates employed in each category from a given law school? This would allow you to create an imputed average salary for employed graduates with a few caveats. First – with 2010 data, there is no indication of full-time or part-time positions – so salary might be slightly overstated. Second – what should you do with those without salaries? To have an average for all graduates, you either allocate them 0 or make an assumption about an appropriate assumed salary.

20 If the imputed salary for graduate students, unknowns, unemployed seeking and unemployed not seeking is $5000, and all of the other salaries use NALPs average salary data per each category, 80 schools have an average salary for graduates under $50000 and 150 schools have an average salary under $ Only 19 schools have an average salary of $80000 or more.

21 The Council for the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar has approved the Standard Review Committees recommendation to amend Standard 509 – Consumer Information. The major changes involve consistent reporting formats for employment and for scholarship retention. Assuming the House of Delegates approves these recommendations, then starting next year this data will be available.


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