January 11, 2007
Size, At Least Length, Does Matter
January 11, 2007 02:50 PM
A few years ago, Ambimb recommended shortening the JD to a 2 year curriculum. During my last semester of law school now, I want to suggest the opposite...extend it by a year. Of course, for all the reasons that Ambimb articulates it would be pointless to make the JD a mandatory 4-year program. What I want is the option to get an extra year to take all the classes that I really want to take. So far on the to-take list: Antitrust, Crim Pro, Copyright, TM, First Amendment, and a crap load of Int'l Law classes. Maybe this is just anxiety before hitting the real world. Maybe it's an inherent desire to remain a student forever. Either way, I think it would be great if law schools created some token degree for staying an extra year. Maybe like a domestic LLM program or something.
I'd also like to see law schools offer extension courses. Most major colleges and universities offer extension courses, why not law schools? Easy money, especially for cash-strapped state schools like mine. I know as an attorney, I would certainly take classes in areas that interest me, but that I do not really practice. Anyway, off to Vegas.
It's called Continuing Legal Education and you'll be required to do it for the rest of your life.
Frequently, the CLE programs are much more informative and practical than law school classes.
I completely agree! There are so many other classes I wish I'd taken!!! (Evidence, CrimPro, and anything else the bar exam tests, etc.)
Seriously, I took classes that I wanted just because I knew 3 years was all I got.
Bah, CLE. I mean some of the talks and what have you that give out CLE credit are fine, but I want to take full on classes. I mean I'm in a once a week seminar right now on EU law. How great would it be if I could take that as a third year associate with plenty of free time on my hands?
CLE seems pretty devoid of discussion, which is one of the attractive aspects of small seminars. I'm with Armen; I wish I had more time in which to take more classes, though not so much on bar topics as on narrow topics that interest me. It suddenly hit me last semester that I didn't have much time left, and I took way too many classes: 17 credit hours, plus running the mock trial program, TAing a class and being Notes Editor. It meant I could take three lecture classes and a clinic, but it also killed my grades. Ouch. Should have learned that lesson back in college...
There's nothing stopping you from taking law school classes after graduation. My firm had one of our litigators take the bankruptcy class after she'd already been practicing for a few years.
"Maybe like a domestic LLM program or something." Every school has just that, domestic LLM programs (and only a few of them say that they're only for future professors). Did you not know that, or am I missing something obvious about your desires? BTW, I totally agree and plan on doing a domestic LLM myself.