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The Minimal Increase in Law School Applications

April 5, 2009

During down economic times, the conventional wisdom is that applications to graduate school, particularly law school, go up.  It’s only a natural feeling for those laid off from jobs such as those in the financial sector.   You don’t have a job so you go to law school, and with any luck, the market will be good again by the time you graduate.

What’s interesting about the present day is that there has not been a flood of new applicants to law school.  Nationally, applications are up only about 3 percent, which is not a striking increase.  It seems that there are a couple of factors contributing to the minimal increase.  For one, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of confidence in the legal market.  When firms are laying people off left and right and other firms are dissolving, there doesn’t seem to be an indication of stability out there.

Another factor, of course, is the cost of law school.  Here are the current tuition rates for the area law schools:

  • Drexel – $32,200 (for the ’09-10 academic year)
  • Penn – $41,600 ( ’08-09)
  • Rutgers-Camden – $31,054 (out of state)/$20,860) (in state) (’08-09)
  • Temple – $28.062 (out of state)/$16,118 (in state) (’08-09)
  • Villanova – $34,850 (average for the next three years)
  • Widener-Delaware – $31,950 (’08-09)

Again, these numbers are just one year’s tuition, which doesn’t factor in fees, books, other costs, as well as room and board.  Penn, for instance, anticipates a full year’s expenses at approximately $62,000.  Per year.  That’s a lot of money to be investing for three years of school when you’re not even guaranteed a good job market after you graduate.

Given these factors, it’s certainly not surprising that folks aren’t rushing out to study up for the LSAT and apply to law school.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. April 8, 2009 11:45 pm

    Well law profession is high paying job, so it will pay up later on.

  2. Phila. 2L permalink
    April 17, 2009 3:36 pm

    I am not so certain that it’s as “high-paying” as a lot of these students assume. Students considering law school should really consider costs, scholarships, etc., when deciding where to attend.

  3. May 10, 2009 7:43 am

    Lawyer is a great job but sometimes risky too.

  4. June 12, 2009 3:55 pm

    Education is a big business these days. People happily afford extra tuition fees in the hope of better careers for their children. Tuition proved recession proof business due to ever increasing need.

    • I hate spam permalink
      June 20, 2009 3:27 am

      Where is the moderator? Why are these 2 obvious spam posts still here?

  5. July 15, 2010 9:10 am

    Lawyer is a great job but sometimes risky too.
    killing games


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