Friday, June 18, 2010

A new low in faking employment numbers

During a bit of self-reflection that inspired another post, I made my way back to my school’s “Prospective Students” page to see just what salary data and employment numbers they were currently baiting 0Ls with. Salary data has since been removed, although it was definitely there a few years ago (as I relied on it). Who knows why it’s been removed…I can even see how it might benefit 0Ls by not tantalizing them with dreams of fat salaries upon graduation. (Although I’m sure they will be told by other sources about the “huge” salaries they can expect.)

What really caught my attention was an insidious new way of calculating employment statistics. Instead of “employed at six months,” or “of those reporting back,” we have this new level of depravity from law school shills:

96.59% of graduates employed, out of those seeking employment. What the fuck is this shit?!?!?

How do you determine who is seeking employment? How do you gauge whether a grad is seeking employment? Isn't EVERYONE presumably seeking employment? How do you accurately represent what this metric means to a prospective student? Do you rule out students unemployed at graduation, and just shunt them off into the “not seeking employment category, to boost your numbers? (Yes.)

I can see the discussion down at career services now!
Dean: We need a way to boost our sagging employment numbers! I want to see this fall’s incoming class packed to the gills!
Shill: Well, dean, students are getting wise to our previous statistical shenanigans like “employed at six months” and “only those who returned the survey.” With 66% of the class graduating with no job, it’s becoming harder and harder to conceal this from naïve 0Ls!
Dean: Well if 2/3 of the class couldn’t get a job, it must be because they aren’t trying hard enough! They probably aren’t even looking for employment! I know…we’ll change our reporting to reflect only those students who WANTED a job and FOUND one. Something about “only those seeking employment were employed.” That sounds like a tautological mindfuck that ought to throw 0Ls and USNews for a loop!
Shill: *Awed, respectful silence at dean’s mastery of the scam.*

Watch out for this new level of scumbucketry and deception, gang. Count on the law schools to leave no stone unturned in their search for novel ways to assuage your fears about the economy and to get your tuition dollars. Matriculate at your own peril; odds are you’ll be one of those “not seeking employment” in a few years.


  1. This is quickly becoming my favorite of the law school scam blogs.

  2. I've said it before and I'll say it again, to quote Benjamin Disraeli, there are lies, damned lies and statistics. The other aspect of this that many other scambloggers and I have pointed out: the schools don't indicate whether "employment" means a job IN THE LAW and, if so, what that job entails. Based on their rubric, if a graduate is working as a janitor at a law firm or Wal-Mart---that counts as "employed." When a prospective Zero Lemming sees that statistic, he/she thinks "Oh they're employed as lawyers!" *See Princess Bride scene where Westley asks which cup contains the poison for destructive assumptions.

    This is about as effective a "measurement" as the "kill count" used by the military since Vietnam as their primary indicator for "success." A Law School says, we have a "employment rate" of 96% of "those reporting back" or "those seeking employment." The US Army announces, "We've killed 100 insurgent/terrorist/Al Qaeda/Taliban/fill in the blank during today's operation." Ok...great, is there a finite number of those enemy combatants we're working with so that we know when we've killed em all? Do civies count?
    Jesus Tittyfucking Christ.

  3. Scammed, check out my new blog.

  4. The overall unemployment rate for college grads is 4.7 percent right now, so their unemployment rate is probably not incredibly deceptive; it's just a reflection of the fact that college grads can get jobs at a good rate. The thing that I think is deceptive is they don't tell how many law grads are actually getting jobs as lawyers; obviously people have to eat and won't wait forever to find a law job.

  5. When I see the phrase "of those seeking employment" in the context of a discussion of law school graduate job placements, I would have ASSUMED in better times that the small percentage supposedly not seeking employment were either enrolled at another law school studying for an LLM, or females graduates in their late 20s to early 30s who were taking time off to raise children. However, I am no longer willing to give the law schools the benefit of the doubt.

    Graduates with no job are NOT going to be giving to the school, they may avoid talking to anybody from the school out of shame, they may be screening ALL of their phone calls to avoid creditors, and they are less likely than the employed to have a landline in the first place.

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