Thursday, April 30, 2015

Stuff You Do If Your Law School's Placement Rank Is 197 Out Of 201

The University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law is not, how shall I say it, the best law school in the world. In terms of ranking, they fell below the US News and World Report cut-off to be ranked. Their 2013 placement rank for full-time, long-term jobs for their graduates was ranked at 197th out of 201. So when you are down here you have to do something.

In an effort to entice their students into getting some pro bono legal experience, they are allowing them to postpone one exam if ... they provide legal assistance to the rioters protesters in Baltimore. Because, you know, cops are bad and burning stores expressing your First Amendment violent outrage concerns is good.

From Dean Shelley Broderick:
Dear Students,

We have been watching the news from Baltimore and know that it is having a profound effect on many in the Law School community. As John Lewis said earlier this week, community/police relations is the civil rights issue of this time. Across this Nation, for nearly a year, the concerns of communities of color about persistent and long standing police abuse, have been reflected in demonstrations and public debate. The energy and commitment of those involved in the movement is inspiring and we want the Law School to be part of it.

The situation in Baltimore is of particular concern. Not only is Baltimore just 30 miles up the road, but many members of our community have roots in the City. It is important that we not ignore what is happening to our neighbors. Several students have come to the Deans with a request that they be permitted to defer an exam so that they can provide legal observer and other assistance to those who have taken to the streets to exercise their First Amendment rights and to address these serious issues.

We would like to support this activism. To that end, if any student wishes to participate in legal support for the demonstrations, we will defer one exam until May 11. To do so, you need to connect with one of the legal assistance organizations, develop a plan for the assistance you intend to provide and get this information to Dean Steward before your exam. If you are having difficulty in identifying a group to work with, please let me know and we can assist you. In addition, because these issues affect everyone at the Law School, we would be pleased to support a student organized teach-in. A community event that brings us together around these issues and promotes mutual support is important during these challenging times.

The police accountability movement needs and will continue to need the best lawyers that we can train. It is our aspiration that you become the future of the legal support for the most important cases of the next generation. It is critical that, while we pay attention to what is going on today, that we not lose sight of the essential role you will play once you pass the bar. We need to invest in you to be prepared to play that role. That is our shared commitment.

Shelley Broderick
Who needs to make up satire when you have self-righteous progressives doing it for you.


  1. As long as they're providing legal aid to people who are /only/ exercising their 1st amendment rights, then there shouldn't be a problem deferring one exam until the 11th. Of course, that means that the people they're aiding would have to be behaving in a perfectly legal manner. Looting, rioting, arson and assault aren't covered by any amendment in the Bill of Rights. So ... to help the law-abiding? Certainly, go forth and learn something about what it means to do the job you're training for. But to assist in criminal activities? I hope you get scooped up like the rest of them.

  2. Not everyone scooped up is looting/rioting etc. Even if they are, they're still entitled to legal representation. Given the large numbers of arrests, and the average net worth of those arrested, I'm going to speculate that the public defenders office is going to be swamped, and no one will get effective counsel.

    It's easy to dismiss the actions of those we typically disagree with on the fundamentals, but they're not always wrong, and they're even sometimes really trying to help.

  3. No sympathy here. Hold them all until trial.