The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects there will be 74,000 new
lawyer jobs this decade, while American law schools will produce more
than 400,000 graduates. Despite those numbers, "it's not clear to me
there's an oversupply problem at all," says Case Western Reserve Law
School Dean Lawrence Mitchell. With so many legal needs of the poor
going unmet, "finding different paths for people who truly want to be
lawyers opens up all sorts of possibilities" for law graduates to find
jobs, he maintains.
"We're running a business" that's grown more
expensive every year because of clinics and smaller class sizes, he
tells Bloomberg Law's Lee Pacchia. Contrary to popular wisdom, "I don't
turn over a big chunk [of law school tuition dollars] to the university,
and I'm not teaching 150 kids in a class," he says.
wrote an op-ed in the New York Times in late November, taking to task
the many critics of legal education. "The attack on law school
disregards . . . we're working hard in good faith" to help students find
employment, he says. "That's why I schlep all over the country for two
months every summer, like Willie Loman, talking to hiring partners at
law firms trying to get my kids jobs."