Thursday, June 30, 2011

Victory for Oak Brook College graduates in Minnesota Supreme Court

Oak Brook graduates will now have the ability to take the bar exam and practice law in Minnesota under the newly amended rules issued by the Minnesota Supreme Court on Monday.  Read the press release here; background information is available here.  Bravo to the group of petitioners, including Oak Brook alumni Micah Stanley and Valarie Wallin, who worked long and hard for this excellent new rule in Minnesota! 

Ribstein: "Law schools as borscht"

A recent report on the "lawyer surplus" has generated a lot of discussion on the blogosphere.  I think the most interesting commentary on this report is from Larry Ribstein:
The problem isn’t that we have too many law trained people and so should train fewer.  In fact, in our increasingly regulated economy, there is probably a gross undersupply of law-trained people. 

The problem is that regulation has fixed the nature of the product so it hasn’t adequately responded to shifts in demand.  The downward demand shifts have been produced by, most importantly, technology.  But demand is increasing for new kinds of law-trained people both at the low-cost end of service to the poor and middle class and the potentially high-profit end of producing new kinds of products and services (see Law’s Information Revolution).  Yet regulation has locked law schools into models that don’t serve these new needs.
In a real market, the supply side would change. As discussed in yesterday’s WSJ, if nobody’s buying borscht, make more horseradish.  

Read the whole post here. It seems that there is a never ending stream of articles on the need for law schools to innovate and adapt to changing markets.  Oak Brook College is a law school that thinks outside the box already and should be in a good place to respond to these developments. 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

CA law school alternatives

This month's California Lawyer is running a feature story on the little-used option of Bar eligibility by reading the law:

The Path Rarely Taken

It is interesting, among other things, for what it says about law school debt, the realities of practice (v. academic preparation), and the potential success of an alternative approach.