It makes it a school that is willing to take a chance on an individual that due to life’s circumstances were not as lucky as others. 3) In 1999, tuition at Cooley was around $7,000 a year. If you attend Cooley Law, you will succeed if you wish. The School was fine, the teachers were engaging and I really enjoyed the reading and learning the law, but I was not your average Cooley student. The Bar and other licensing exams are content driven exams and while they do require analytical skill, you can study for them. Passed MI with flying colours, and went on to pass the bar in Ontario. Paying $200,000 + interest/opportunity cost for a 25% chance at a job is bad. We’re actually on the side of the students and graduates… far too many of whom have been poorly served by Cooley. Medical school harder to get in this Law school. Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean and director of Global Social Action Agenda at the Wiesenthal Center, said that while it was tough to limit the list to only 10 incidents this year, the “weaponization” of the COVID-19 pandemic … I lived in a house while attending law school with 4 Cooley Law students. Going to a low ranked law school does not prevent you from having a successful career. 2020 is the year that I have bicycled more than 3,000 miles. Cooley was the only option, so I went with high ambitions and great expectations. We all knew of Cooley’s reputation when we enrolled (from the likes of this article to accusations by the ABA (who has never liked the idea of Cooley’s mission) which the school does not hide from us. Interesting – I am a 1992 Thomas M. Cooley graduate – Passed the NY Bar the first time and found that when I was taking a NY bar review course – graduates from, what I believe the original author is advocating, “More Worthy Schools” were having a hard time with subjects that were required at Cooley. I also graduated in January 1999. Now they’ve got a ticking time bomb on their hands. Such as with Grand Valley State, Eastern Michigan and Oakland Universities. The worst year in world history, by the way, was not even close, the panel said. Unfortunately, Princeton does NOT have a law school!! If I am being harsh and you don’t like the truth, then law is simply not for you no matter where you go to school. There is a dearth of knowledge out there about the perils of going to lower ranked schools. University of Chicago, J.D., 2012 Because the school admits many students, there are many students that flunked out and have pure hatred for the school. These pass rates are pretty shocking. The answer is the same people who say if you did not do well on the MCAT you should not have an opportunity to be a doctor. I passed two bars on the first try. But the same could be said of students at T1 schools. I’m sorry that we were not around in 2007 to help guide you in the right direction at the time, but it is good to hear that you have at least be able to get a job (even if it isn’t practicing law). (Source: Law School Transparency). But for the 20% it gave them a chance to enter the profession and excell. Didn’t you get in? I am a practice attorney who graduated from a T6 school and have many friends who graduated from the T14 and from every range of schools below. The worst thing you can do is spend your life doing something you hate. Don’t forget the old saying- what do they call a person who graduated last in his class from the worst medical school? Is some of this fair? I received an excellent education from Cooley, especially when it came to actual practice and knowledge of the law, where after the first year did not feel like all they wanted me to know were the rules of Common Law. And, as is true in my case, an undergraduate degree GPA does not reflect current academic prowess (my undergraduate GPA is 26 years old; my paralegal diploma GPA (10 years old) was significantly higher). Most importantly. I’d like to stay in the Detroit area as my family is moving there and I wouldn’t have to pay for housing. A J.D. Another friend went to a low ranked law school but had family connections to help land his first job. Be ready to move. Do you think its worth paying loans off and attending a top 25 school or go the opposite direction and go to one of the lowest ranked schools for essentially free. Contrary to the articles and image the LSAC present, LSATs are not a solid predictor of success (hence the increasing use of the GRE). It turned out that I was able to quit my job and focus 100% of my time on law school. Why anyone would sacrifice three-plus years of their life and the very real potential for nondischargeable debt in excess of $200,000.00 with minimal job prospects is simply mind-boggling. Take it from my own experience and those of my classmates at a high ranked school: $122K is hard to pay off when you are making $160K your first year. G. Be aggressive for that first job. Phil Eiger Newmann, ... Our Constitution displaced by a parallel system of law cobbled by barristers, merchants, and politicians atop the coached caterwauling of professional mourners.) By any plain reading, it seems that Cooley is running afoul of the ABA requirement that “a school shall not admit an applicant who does not appear capable of satisfactorily completing its program of legal education and being admitted to the bar.”. Cynthia simply stated that her issue is with people, who try to rank them. Hi Cynthia, I am considering Cooley. After working 25 years for Michigan State University, the practice of law is my second career. When I went to law school at a regional school that is now a T2 the data regarding job prospects existed but nowhere near to the degree that it exists now. If you are like myself and want to practice law for your own firm, who cares about the over-saturated economy for lawyers. Moreover, most of my evening classmates already had professional jobs. Of course there are exceptions, like with everything else, but it is difficult for the majority to find legal employment. Cooley’s stats may be low but that’s because of the amount of people who flunk out or barely hold on until the bar. I was accepted into 23of the 25 schools I applied to. BY FAR! Also, to stick your head in the sand when Josh, who graduated from a top school, and everyone else who has actually gone is telling you not to go to a lower-ranked school is baffling. And now Western Michigan (like Michigan State did) has ended their affiliation with Cooley. Paying $60K more for a few spots higher ranking seems like a poor choice UNLESS one of those schools is in the area you want to work and place people in that location. Students discussed it as being an “open admission policy” giving low LSAT scoring and/or low GPA students a chance to attend, but still maintaining standards required to pass classes. When deciding where to live, many of us look for amenities, safety, good schools … J. There is no content to study, you can only study the test methodology. Worth ethic will be important, but the problem with legal hiring is that your resume gets your foot in the door. One thing I also must state is that most of those students that did flunk out have a very huge hatred towards the school, and even many years later continue to provide negative remarks about the school. It is honestly shocking that the ABA has allowed Cooley to keep its accreditation with bar passage rates as low as they already are. Edit: I meant that everyone can get an “A” in my paragraph. As a law school drop out from Birmingham School of Law, I need all the help I can get. What am saying? I can only imagine how bad things are going to get in a few years when these students graduate. The best research? By contrast, Cooley grads spend 3 years in law school, putting in a gargantuan effort on their part to secure a job as an attorney, but nearly 75% of them are unable to land themselves a law job. I don’t want to offend anyone. And I can tell you this, be loyal to no one but yourself/family. I know several other attorneys who attended top 5 law schools. But the data as of now show that it is very atypical. “Your reputation of working hard and getting the job done is what counts.”. This helped him enormously when it came to landing his first job. Most of our readers are very conscientious. If you graduate from a school such as Boston University, Fordham, Boston College, George Washington, you have a respected law degree and reasonably good prospects. In fact I still play chess with my products liability prof who once played against Garry Kasparov. “It is the latest in a long tradition saved for some of the worst foes humanity has faced in the magazine’s history,” the editors of Time wrote. I was always an aggressive hard working person, so even with a degree from a marginal law school, I probably would have found a niche and become very successful. Ask politely to speak to someone…make them say no to your face. 2020 is the “Worst Year Ever?” I will take this year over any year before penicillin, indoor plumbing, electricity and regular trash collection. Certainly hope I couldn’t do this today! He said this to me, and I always remembered that: “Every society is better if more of its citizens know the law”. Because by becoming State institutions they could keep tuition lower. His AMAZING professors??? Even people from top schools struggle. Going to law school does not mean being successful. We do not know what history will say of 2020. Jesus, that was the poorest attempt at trying to relay an intelligent thought. Opinion on St.Thomas University in Miami. The key, they are all good lawyers. 2020's Worst Red-Light Runners: Florida Tops List Of Violators - Tampa, FL - Red-light crashes threaten public safety in Florida, says a transportation company. If you’re just starting to think about law school, the best way to avoid this fate is to crush the LSAT. Passed it having only taken only a contract law course while working on a master’s degree in engineering from George Washington University. If you want to find some truly harsh invective about Cooley and schools like it, it will just take a little googling. Don’t worry, there are plenty of careers that would be suitable for someone with your skill set and anger management issues. What a lot of people forget is that Cooley has a mission not only to provide solid legal education, but to open opportunities for students of the law who have a real passion for it but maybe not the best GPA and/or LSAT score. I rather a smart Pharmicst helping me then you since you arnt smart. #3 was some guy named Ralph Nader. They really just test your puzzle solving ability. As another unfortunate Cooley grad (2005), I can confirm THIS is accurate…it’s almost as if there’s an unwritten rule that 1/3 of the class would get either an A or B, 1/3 would get a C and 1/3 D or F. If you were one of those C’s, you were on thin ice until your 2nd semester as a 2L where the grading seemed to level off. I finished both high school and undergrad a year early and like the option of graduating law school early. I work in a big firm that has IVY league attorneys and attorneys who attended schools with much lower reputations. In spite of our best efforts to convince people to take their LSAT prep seriously, our message doesn’t reach everyone. And at the end of my 3 years my total student debt was just $15,000.00. Do you enjoy your job? Easily disproved assertions offered in evidence to support your school really doesn’t help your case. This does not bode well for the class of 2018, whose median LSAT score is a shockingly low 141. Cooley’s costs, while a shade lower than those of the highest ranked schools, are still enormously high. I began attending the school knowing that I was going to be in for a struggle – and was told that according to my LSAT score, I should have not made it past my first trimester. Where are they hiring their associates from. As I’ve stated before, law school is graded on a curve and the LSAT serves to make sure students with similar capabilities are competing. Honestly Evan, you can eat shit. Every law graduate must pass the same essay questions or Multistate Performance Test in their state. It was no secret then that few Cooley grads ever got hired at large law firms. I was looking for a law school that would prepare me to pass the bar exam and offer opportunities for me to be “practice ready.” Cooley simply fit. As the recession hit and the legal market shrank, law schools have had a choice about how to handle it. Have the leverage. And here’s the REALLY scary thing. This is about getting experience. I was a paralegal/legal assistant for 10-years prior to enrolling last fall. Especially when those jobs are for low pay which make paying off your loans and establishing your life and family next to impossible. First, Rehnquist never attended Princeton he is a Stanford graduate 1948..Second, your Professor Rooney did not attend Princeton he is a University of Illinois Graduate 1953. https://www.cooley.edu/faculty/john-rooney. If you truly love the law, then be a lawyer. (Cooley is not that cheap however). Questions Of course there is always the outlyer who makes the big bucks. Most of you take the LSAT very seriously. In fact, with an employment rate of just 49.40% 9 months after graduation, chances are better than ever that you will end up completely unemployed if you happen to be one of the poor souls graduating from Cooley Law. These doom-sayers serve as an impetus to us to prove attitudes like this wrong. I have had opportunities to hire individuals from a multitude of schools, and I can honestly say that although a T1 diploma looks good and will open doors to the big firms, their school’s pedigree had little bearing on their actual performance. I passed the California bar in 2000 and have practiced law on California since. Tests were marked on a curve – so even if you received a decent grade on the exam, but most of the students taking the test did better, you may have failed. The year 2020 has been the worst in the lives of pretty much everyone you know. — Many of the school’s students with low LSAT scores and grade-point averages were not even sitting for the bar. It does not hinder the legal proffesion. A recent update for 2018-2019 has been made available, and we can look at the data again. Take my advice and go to a law school that will actually benefit you. Here in the United States it will be a story of a virus and its consequences, wildfires and hurricanes, […] It was the students choice to waste their money. Some of the worst law students are making far more doing PI cases than the Summa Cum Laudes they went to school with. In actuality, both of my fellow students did not last the year – they were “kicked out” due to low academic grades. Just sayin. Average Indebtedness. Here is a comparison of 2014 admissions data with 2015. I went to Cooley in the 1980’s after working in Investment Banking. However, on average the best predictor of how you will do in law school is the LSAT. This seems to be the beginning of the end for Cooley Law School. God bless you all. I must say how much I appreciate the viewpoints (and statistics) mentioned above. If it was not for their low admission criteria, people like me would not have been able to pursue a career in law or related areas and have some affect on the world around us. Beware, these are not opinions but facts. Only 22 schools meet that definition among median debt and earnings. As a practicing lawyer for over twenty years, I’ve watched how opportunities in the profession have evaporated while law schools continue to churn out new law graduates. They didn’t take the LSAT seriously, got a low score, and are ready to run head-long into a costly and potentially disastrous career choice by attending any law school that’ll take them. “If a student who did not do well on the LSAT really wants to be a lawyer, who are we to say they should not have the opportunity” There could be 100 reasons…But, at the end of the day, clients that hire the firms care where the people they are going to be paying went to school. Which may explain why few alumnae make any meaningful contributions. The point is that “statistically”, attending Cooley is not a good idea due to the over saturation of lawyers vs. available law jobs. Any opinion on Emory, University of Arizona, ASU JD, Stetson Law, Florida Coastal? By any reputable method of ranking ABA law schools, they would appear near the very bottom. The school did not make it easy for us. Although, I will note, as an alumni of the school, the low passage rates of the Bar exam are concerning. Glad to hear you are carving your own way. I have seen plenty of BIGLAW burnouts and T6 graduates that were not very good lawyers. They could have sought out having affiliations or mergers with area State colleges. Rand Paul Is The Worst, Federal Judges Edition — See Also. Copyright Policy. MR. Evans, Of course, there will be people who excel no matter where they go to law school. Some things below contain “fatherly advice”. I was a business person who had won a prestigious Coop position with Procter & Gamble and an SBA award from UConn in small business consulting. Nothing could be further from the truth. I work with a young lady that graduated from MSU’s College of Law and she said she was not prepared for the bar exam after graduation. First try. Having started two law firms, I think everyone should work at a firm for 3-5 years before hanging their own shingle. In many ways I do not blame them. The ABA countered in a pending motion for summary judgment: –Cooley’s first-time bar pass rate dropped from 76 percent to 48 percent over a seven-year period and hovered between 15 and 22 percent below the state average from 2012 to 2015. Law schools are not like other graduates schools! ——–. Professor Trotsky was a famous Wall Street lawyer who decided to teach. And he is still in huge debt. Be the best. I think that is where comments go astray. Do you think it would be worth my while getting a J.D. I come from a family that did not have much money, and worked literally 50+ hours a week while in college (more during holiday weeks). I attended Michigan State University and graduated in 2001. And, if they happen to go to COOLEY, they can be as successful as me. Although I was accepted at other similar Law Schools… These are not analogous. Also any value of their JSD in intercultural human rights? Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. By Vivia Chen | December 22, 2020 at 03:26 PM In fact, NJ has a great deal of Cooley Law alumni as members of the bar. The problem is the vast majority do not. Full-time tuition in 2015 was $47,890 per year (estimated total with cost of living: $65,474). We all take the same multiple-choice (MBE) questions on the bar exam. Save yourself the heartache and only attend law school under much much better circumstances. Your dish on Cooley seems to be for purposes of selling your LSAT prep so that people like me don’t end up going to a school like Cooley. Professor James Peden practiced criminal law for 20 years. Lebanon has gone through so much already. My 151 score in the LSAT was not earth shattering, but that would have gotten me into a lot of law schools had I bothered. Jim Goad. I am BEGGING you to help get my story made into a short film. For instance, they admitted large classes and had high attrition rates. There are so many things one can do with a J.D. For the last year I can find it, 2013, it was a whopping $122,395. “What makes your opinion worth anything more than anyone else’s?”. Since 2011, FIRE has named and shamed 65 individual colleges and universities as America’s worst for free speech. from the University of Chicago & 5 years of experience analyzing law school admissions trends. Putting down people for where they chose to attend school is another. One from either sitting judges change of venue is in I have a friend who also went to Uconn and attended Cooley, and he has become very successful and I have other friends who have attended better schools who make crappy livings and are not happy with the state of the law. I went down the list of Colley professors (on their website) and stopped in the “L’s”. Of those relatively few students who secured private sector work, at least half make 45K or more. In fact, she failed the bar exam, but received a passing score after an appeal. Doctor. If you just have to get a degree (i.e. — The percentage of students coming to Cooley with LSAT scores of 143 or lower more than doubled over six years, accounting for more than half of the class. US News lists the following salary data for Cooley: Median private sector starting salary: $45,000, Median public service starting salary: $47,916. Glad I read this blog since I am helping my grandson gather intel about law schools. Whether you went to Harvard or Timbuktu College of Law, work for a big firm or small, you won’t make a lot to start. So your proof of quality is the fictional ordinal ranking of your professor between two men at a college that he did not attend. Better yet there is no need to insult anyone. Experience (successful) trumps “where you went to school” as time moves on. I got a 144 on lsat…graduated cum lauded in two years…passed the bar first time…passed Nevada bar first time…and hit the ground running at my first job…Cooley was the only school that would take me because I am horrible at standardized tests…but I excelled…. Dec 17, 2020 at 8:00 PM Shares 2. I. Order paper mill from my checking adjuncts do the class room they were horrible in bench I have a friend who went to a law school ranked well below those in our area. Figure out the type of firm you want to work in and then research their attorneys. My LSAT tutor was a U of M Law School graduate. from Cooley considering they have offered me full ride and book money. These are statistics! Thanks to the efforts of those pushing for more transparency, only recently have we been able to get a somewhat clearer picture of how these graduates really fare. Collwy law schoes DOES have a liberal admissions policy, but not everyone who goes to Cooley has a poor Academic pedigree I was a 3 point student at Portland State before I applied to Cooley. F. Be the best! Don’t know what this means. Wel Evan, you really said nothing new that hasn’t already been said about Cooley. When Cynthia went to Cooley in 1992, that was almost 30 years ago. If you are using the late Supreme Court justice’s time at Princeton as an exemplar of how we should view Professor Rooney and Cooley then I find this troubling. While I think the school needs improving, I agree that some students deserve a second chance and can be the odds. Unless your rich Uncle is going to give you a job in his law firm, pass on Cooley. If a business wants to sell it’s products exponentially, they would do better focusing on their feature and benefits, what strengthens them, and not what flaws another has. besides being a traditional, courtroom lawyer. Famously, however, for many years they tried to counter this by publishing their own rankings based on silly metrics such as total volumes in the library, law school square footage, and incoming class size. We work very hard — harder probably than the “average” law student (the old, “work twice as hard to get half as far” idea). As noted in some of the comments, some students have attended Cooley with reasonable LSAT scores and have chosen the school for a variety of reasons. 2020 is the year that I am totally in love with my husband of 22 years, the year that my dogs are always happy to see me (that’s every year), my daughter … With close to a 90% acceptance rate, Cooley has effectively an open admissions policy. Are you happy with your income now? Moral of the story: even if 20% just graduate or pass the bar. Looking back, I wish I would have known then what I know now. At some point the ABA needs to step in to protect potential victims, established practitioners, as well as to preserve what is left of the legal profession’s integrity. I have already been offered a legal internship in health law after my L1 with an insurance company I interned with this past summer. Obviously you have no clue what you are even arguing about. Those lawyers are excellent at what they do. Unlike most law schools, Cooley does not always reliably publish their average student indebtedness. I run my own very successful firm. At least they will have a life or spread their entrepreneurial wings. I entered the school as part of the John Jay class set to graduate in 2000, but did a 2 year program and graduated with the Flannigan class in January 1999. Take this from someone who graduated from a great school and still know people who didn’t get jobs. God forbid they aspire to do more than make the rich richer. My son passed the Illinois bar. : Last year, a treasure trove of data from the Department of Education offered incredible insights into debt and earnings of law school graduates. Please accept that these are based upon my experiences. Many were just looking to augment the credentials they already had. What was great about all these professors was that they actually did their own teaching. this year: 1. Side note. As a rising senior in University considering law school, also very bad with standardized exams, I needed to know your opinion on all of this. The 25th percentile at Cooley is now a shocking 138. Perhaps the DMV or Comcast customer service. Who pissed in that boys corn flakes..I am a self employed 58 year old and Cooleys part time schedule is perfect for me .You see Jr, I have a job the day I graduate, even before I pass the bar, as I’m a realtor and self employed and will coninue as a realestate attorney with opportunities with many realestate offices as counsel. It IS expensive. It is worth remembering that a median gives you very little information. I didn’t even know what LSAT stood for before I went to law school and it took me 6 months to find out the right way to say Prothonotary. Going to a school like Cooley and succeeding makes you an exception to the rule; not the rule. Professor Rooney graduated 2nd in his class from Princeton. Maybe just maybe the faculty should be changed up a bit. Especially in MI…where you are competing against grads from Michigan and Michigan State. I wanted to do something more meaningful than just making money. If, in contrast, you were accepted by two other schools which are a few spots above Cooley and have similar placement rates, go to Cooley. I studied and worked hard while at Cooley, and not surprising (to those that knew me), I did graduate much closer to the top of the class than the bottom. These types of exams measure analytical thinking. After graduating, I went back to my home state of NJ and take the bar. Consider, not everyone who graduates from law school wants to work at a large law firm – that’s not always the standard of success. I agree that the top 25 or so law schools are in the mix. That is Cooley’s mission, which I rather think is noble. I worked in a small firm for 5 years then opened my office in San Francisco in 2005. I didn’t score super high(156) with a 3.9 GPA and a great Resume but have had several top 25 schools offer as well but nothing near full tuition. The Careerist's Worst, Most Atrocious Lawyers of the Year This is not the list you want to be on. The best end up being people you’d never expect (Tom Brady’s story is a great example…I know this isn’t an educational example). Secret then that few Cooley grads, whose median LSAT score do I to... Or 3 from Michigan and Oakland universities is that you need to take the bar but nowadays our young is... 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