Thursday, April 8, 2021
Bloomberg Law op-ed: Legal Education Needs a Wellness Reckoning, by Janet Thompson Jackson (Washburn):
No one goes to law school with the expectation that their mental health and overall well-being will be significantly compromised during those three years. But, for a substantial number of law students, it is. It does not have to be this way.
According to the Dave Nee Foundation, most law students begin law school with a psychological profile similar to that of the general public, with depression rates at less than 10%. But, after just one semester, depression rates rise to 27%. After two semesters, the rate spikes to 34% and after three years, up to 40% of law students experience depression.
Tragically, a study of 3,000 law students found that 21% reported serious thoughts of suicide in their lifetimes and 6% had seriously considered suicide in the 12 months before the survey. And, while anxiety and depression may manifest in law school, it does not end there. ...
More than a general call to action, legal education needs a new step-by-step blueprint of how to reimagine legal education with a focus on wellness. Actions must begin with leaders in legal education challenging ourselves to become modelers of wellness as well as teachers of law.