Re: Steep Decline in Law School Applications

by Ed Whelan

Adding to the National Law Journal article I discussed, this New York Times article passes along law professor Brian Tamanaha’s informed estimate that the number of students beginning law school in the fall of 2013 will be “about 38,000, the lowest since 1977.” The article also provides this stark observation (emphasis added) by Indiana law professor William D. Henderson:

“In the ’80s and ’90s, a liberal arts graduate who didn’t know what to do went to law school,” Professor Henderson of Indiana said. “Now you get $120,000 in debt and a default plan of last resort whose value is just too speculative. Students are voting with their feet. There are going to be massive layoffs in law schools this fall. We won’t have the bodies we need to meet the payroll.” 

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