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Author Topic: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread  (Read 302215 times)

JDat45

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Re: I have a dilemma (a good dilema but still a dilema)
« Reply #2280 on: December 10, 2008, 05:23:53 PM »
UVA, but I'm a prestige whore and don't really see what the problem with paying back loans is if you're making $140k+ per year.

HA! @ prestige whore. Me too. GUILTY AS CHARGED! :P

Don't sleep though. Howard grads go to Biglaw at greater % than most schools.  I didn't even go there but I'm constantly meeting biglaw associates here in NY from Howard.


Yeah, I know. Howard has long been coined "the black Harvard" whatever that means.  :P

A.

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2281 on: December 10, 2008, 06:13:53 PM »
lol the things I said in my younger days do amuse me so.  Now I'd probably just ignore the question or reply with a simple "UVA."

Burning Sands, Esq.

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2282 on: December 10, 2008, 06:50:18 PM »
lol the things I said in my younger days do amuse me so.  Now I'd probably just ignore the question or reply with a simple "UVA."

The ghost of Christmas Past is paying you a visit, buddy.
"A lawyer's either a social engineer or a parasite on society. A social engineer is a highly skilled...lawyer who understands the Constitution of the U.S. and knows how to explore its uses in the solving of problems of local communities and in bettering [our] conditions."
Charles H. Houston

LawDog3

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2283 on: January 09, 2009, 12:14:30 AM »
When I visited Howard, the facilities did not excite me. They were okay - as in bearable - but I remember the restrooms and classrooms being antiquated, have they fixed this? If Howard Law is to reach that elusive top-100 status, it needs to pull itself into the 21stC. The library is nice, but...

Nearly every top-100 school in the country is either currently renovating, planning renovations for the near future, or recently (within the past 8 years) completed renovations, is HULS?

I have also visited the website; half of the time it doesn't work properly. And, as is the case with Brooklyn Law School, its layout has not changed in several years.

I know these "concerns" seem a little knit-picky, and I would never base my final decision on such things if I were to be admitted, but I do notice them.

Despite its USNWR ranking, HULS is not a TTT school educationally; with such a rich history and strong networks, one would think that the Howard Law donors and administration would do all they could to keep HULS on pace with top D.C. schools (GULC, GWU, American, and GMU) and other (top-100) schools, to which it should rightfully be compared. 

But, for the record, walking through the halls gave me chills!

Esco

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2284 on: January 10, 2009, 10:04:44 AM »
Students don't attend HUSL because of it's facilities; students attend HUSL because of its rich history and reputation of producing effective attorneys.  Students attend HUSL because the top firms recruit at HUSL.  Actually, firms and organizations recruit at HUSL more than they recruit at many of the top D.C. schools and other top - 100 schools that you mentioned.  The facilities, renovations, website, and other greviances that you mentioned are irrelevant when you consider the benefits that HUSL students receive (ie: top professors, employment opportunities, network, respect, etc).  Students attend HUSL because they want to be a part of it's history and network. I also received chills when I first visited HUSL; however, not because of the old facilities, but because it was an honor to see the generations of students/professionals who have their pictures on the walls of those old, non-exciting facilities.   
Fun fact: HUSL ranks within the top 15 schools in the nation among schools that have produced the most active judges.  Pretty good for a TTT?
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Burning Sands, Esq.

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2285 on: January 10, 2009, 10:57:14 AM »
This is true.  If you read back through the [however many we're up to now] pages in this thread, the general consensus is that Howard is truly an anomaly with respect to "ranking."   In fact, the US News' refusal to place it in the top 100 year after year only speaks to the lack of accuracy of their ranking system.  The only fair criticism that is often leveled against Howard is it's lower than average bar passage rate.  Other than that, it places well in employment opportunities. Better than many so-called top 100 schools.

Now I feel Law Dog on the old school building.  It had been a minute since I've been in a public building where the floors creek.  LOL  But had I gone there, I'm sure the floor creeking would have been the last thing on my mind as I was counting the number offers on my plate.

"A lawyer's either a social engineer or a parasite on society. A social engineer is a highly skilled...lawyer who understands the Constitution of the U.S. and knows how to explore its uses in the solving of problems of local communities and in bettering [our] conditions."
Charles H. Houston

LawDog3

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2286 on: January 10, 2009, 04:18:12 PM »
Students don't attend HUSL because of it's facilities; students attend HUSL because of its rich history and reputation of producing effective attorneys.  Students attend HUSL because the top firms recruit at HUSL.  Actually, firms and organizations recruit at HUSL more than they recruit at many of the top D.C. schools and other top - 100 schools that you mentioned.  The facilities, renovations, website, and other greviances that you mentioned are irrelevant when you consider the benefits that HUSL students receive (ie: top professors, employment opportunities, network, respect, etc).  Students attend HUSL because they want to be a part of it's history and network. I also received chills when I first visited HUSL; however, not because of the old facilities, but because it was an honor to see the generations of students/professionals who have their pictures on the walls of those old, non-exciting facilities.   
Fun fact: HUSL ranks within the top 15 schools in the nation among schools that have produced the most active judges.  Pretty good for a TTT?

Did you read my disclaimer? I said that I would never hinge a decision on these issues. I also mentioned HUSL's "rich history" and said that walking through the halls gave me "chills". How did you interpret those remarks? Because I thought I was pretty clear on my warm feelings towards the institution; these things are redundant.

The question is, however, "Is it okay to maintain mediocre facilities at a school that considers itself top-notch?" True, it hasn't hurt Black students' beleif in the institution. But how long can HUSL continue to lag behind other schools in terms of facilities and woo top talent? Believe it or not, many students refuse to apply to howard because of this.

There's always a general perception that Black-owned businesses and institutions offer inferior products and services, and when a top HBCU fails to keep up its facilities, it feeds into that stereotype.

All I am asking is, "Why does a school like Howard not keep up?" It should have top-notch facilities and add a few volumed to its library. If it makes some cosmetic changes and increases its per student expenditures just a little, it will become a high-end T2 school and lure more top Black talent.

Believe me, I am not alone in noticing these things. And I have friends who have gone to so-called top schools, even though they would rather have gone to Howard. The facilities and some of the administrative infrastructure were deal-breakers for them. I went to a white university, and I would love to attend an HBCU law school.

But like other Black students, I do not feel like dealing with the added stress of not being able to do online research at-will, or dealing with faulty vending machines when I a famished after studying all-day. Students need a nice gymnasium to work out in.

Contrary to what you say, these things matter...a lot! If they didn't, schools would not mention "student life" on their websites. And if they didn't matter to Black talent, HUSL would more successfully woo Black students with higher grades and LSAT's. This is no knock on the Black talent Howard gets, because I know they are great students, regardless.

Moreover, it is very commendable that HUSL students are able to block out the inconveniences, but they shouldn't have to. Sure, Howard has gotten by with mediocre facilities, but just because something can be done a certain way, does not mean it SHOULD be done that way. 

Do not misunderstand me. I share your pride in Howard University, and I demonstrated that in my earlier remarks. Howard Law could be dominating in the recruitment of top Black talent, but right now,  it loses many top students to T-1 schools. And it doesn't have to.

It also seems that you thought I was calling HUSL overrated, I was saying just the opposite. I think it is already a Top law school, but the rankings don't show it b/c of its BAR passage rate, its needy infrastriucture and some of the cosmetic things I mentioned.

A.

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2287 on: January 10, 2009, 04:54:12 PM »
If it makes some cosmetic changes and increases its per student expenditures just a little, it will become a high-end T2 school and lure more top Black talent.

Lol.  I can show you plenty of crappy law schools with new buildings.  This is a silly argument.  A deeper argument might look beyond a new paint job and address their finances: if Howard could somehow raise its endowment to match those of the top schools (as an example, I think YLS is planning on $1 billion within the next few years), then perhaps it could increase per-student expenditures, update its facilities, and attract a higher caliber student body.  But that's probably not going to happen, for a myriad of reasons that affect HBCUs.

Esco

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2288 on: January 10, 2009, 07:26:40 PM »
Students don't attend HUSL because of it's facilities; students attend HUSL because of its rich history and reputation of producing effective attorneys.  Students attend HUSL because the top firms recruit at HUSL.  Actually, firms and organizations recruit at HUSL more than they recruit at many of the top D.C. schools and other top - 100 schools that you mentioned.  The facilities, renovations, website, and other greviances that you mentioned are irrelevant when you consider the benefits that HUSL students receive (ie: top professors, employment opportunities, network, respect, etc).  Students attend HUSL because they want to be a part of it's history and network. I also received chills when I first visited HUSL; however, not because of the old facilities, but because it was an honor to see the generations of students/professionals who have their pictures on the walls of those old, non-exciting facilities.   
Fun fact: HUSL ranks within the top 15 schools in the nation among schools that have produced the most active judges.  Pretty good for a TTT?

Did you read my disclaimer? I said that I would never hinge a decision on these issues. I also mentioned HUSL's "rich history" and said that walking through the halls gave me "chills". How did you interpret those remarks? Because I thought I was pretty clear on my warm feelings towards the institution; these things are redundant.

The question is, however, "Is it okay to maintain mediocre facilities at a school that considers itself top-notch?" True, it hasn't hurt Black students' beleif in the institution. But how long can HUSL continue to lag behind other schools in terms of facilities and woo top talent? Believe it or not, many students refuse to apply to howard because of this.

There's always a general perception that Black-owned businesses and institutions offer inferior products and services, and when a top HBCU fails to keep up its facilities, it feeds into that stereotype.

All I am asking is, "Why does a school like Howard not keep up?" It should have top-notch facilities and add a few volumed to its library. If it makes some cosmetic changes and increases its per student expenditures just a little, it will become a high-end T2 school and lure more top Black talent.

Believe me, I am not alone in noticing these things. And I have friends who have gone to so-called top schools, even though they would rather have gone to Howard. The facilities and some of the administrative infrastructure were deal-breakers for them. I went to a white university, and I would love to attend an HBCU law school.

But like other Black students, I do not feel like dealing with the added stress of not being able to do online research at-will, or dealing with faulty vending machines when I a famished after studying all-day. Students need a nice gymnasium to work out in.

Contrary to what you say, these things matter...a lot! If they didn't, schools would not mention "student life" on their websites. And if they didn't matter to Black talent, HUSL would more successfully woo Black students with higher grades and LSAT's. This is no knock on the Black talent Howard gets, because I know they are great students, regardless.

Moreover, it is very commendable that HUSL students are able to block out the inconveniences, but they shouldn't have to. Sure, Howard has gotten by with mediocre facilities, but just because something can be done a certain way, does not mean it SHOULD be done that way. 

Do not misunderstand me. I share your pride in Howard University, and I demonstrated that in my earlier remarks. Howard Law could be dominating in the recruitment of top Black talent, but right now,  it loses many top students to T-1 schools. And it doesn't have to.

It also seems that you thought I was calling HUSL overrated, I was saying just the opposite. I think it is already a Top law school, but the rankings don't show it b/c of its BAR passage rate, its needy infrastriucture and some of the cosmetic things I mentioned.

A. - I agree with you 100%

Law Doggie - I did not think that you were calling HUSL overrated nor did I think that you were bashing HUSL; however, I must admit, we seem to be looking through two separate set of lenses.  When speaking of HUSL, you see "mediocare facilities," and question whether it is okay to maintain mediocare facilities at a "top-notch" school.  Conversely, I see tradition in the HUSL facilities;
1. It's "top-notch" status has nothing to do with it's facilities.  HUSL's "top-notch" status is inherited from a long history of making notable social engineers out of what you consider to not to be "Top Black Talent."  HUSL's "top-notch status" has more to do with the contribution that HUSL graduates have made to society at large over the course of time, and less with it's facilities. Shouts out to Thurgood, the Senator of Ill, and to all of those inbetween.   

2. The general perception / stereotype that black-owned business and institutions offer inferior products and services stems from the our country's historical belief in black inferiority.  Things were like this before we were born, and will probably continue to be like that unless Obama really produces change; but even then, there will be people like you who think that just because a school lacks the "top-notch" facilities, as compared to other schools, they cannot be "top-notch" because the "top-notch" talent will go to those other schools.  POINT: HUSL's facilities has nothing to do with the products or services that the school offers.

3. "Top Black Talent" or "Black Talent".  When firms want to recruit the "top-black talent" where do they go?  Do your research, HUSL receives Black students from all of the top undergraduate schools in the nation - Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Stanford, etc, as well as many of the other schools that you may or may not consider noteworthy.  These students attend Howard because they want to take part in history, not because they could not get into T-1 or T-2 schools (or because HOward gave them more $$ of course).  Students attend Howard because they know that the top firms recruit there, regardless of its inferior facilities.  Bottom line: There are exceptionally talented blacks at every law school in the nation, and a there is school full of them at Howard.  Don't be fooled by the LSAT & grades argument because they are not absolute measures/indicators of a person's "talent" or intellectual capabilities. 

4. I do agree with you on one thing, HUSL could use a gym on campus or better vending machines.  Although these things may add to the convenience for some students, it has absolutely nothing to do with the opportunties you receive, and the knowledge you obtain from the institution.  Why are HUSL students unable to do online research at-will? 

5. Bar passage rates.  Howard's 1st time bar passage rates were low because most students take the bar (mostly NY & MD) without taking barbri or other prep courses.  To correct this problem, Howard has added $1K to the first year's tuition, which will be credited to the student, after graduation, to apply towards a bar prep course. 

As far as rankings are concerned, I think Howard has been ranked the most underrated school for sometime now (at least by Vault...I think).  I don't know about you, but employment is what matters to me doggie.
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Burning Sands, Esq.

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Re: The Howard Law/HBCU Law Schools Thread
« Reply #2289 on: January 10, 2009, 08:36:17 PM »
I think Law Dawg to an extent has a valid observation regarding the conditions black people seem to be willing to accept.  I partly agree with Esco that that stereotype is partly due to outside misconception and belief that blacks are inferior period, but I also submit that much of it comes from our willingness to put up with a sub-standard environment.  I live in Harlem which, contrary to recent Manhattan northern migration, is still predominantly black.  If I want fresh fruit or vegetables that are not (i) decayed or (ii) infested with chemicals I have to hop on the 2/3 or the 4/5/6 to travel to the upper west side or the upper east side where the white folks stay.  If I want decent health care, I can't go to the Harlem hospital, I gotta do downtown to NYU or what have you.  All the way from downtown to just about where Harlem starts, the streets in Manhattan are cleaned everyday.  You come to Harlem there's trash everywhere, litter all over the sidewalks, random garbage just hanging out in the street....and it is BLACK people who put it there!!! I could go on all day describing the discrepancies.  The worst part about it is, I see the black folks in my neighborhood who grew up here and they just accept it.  As if there's nothing wrong with it at all.  You walk in a store in a white neighborhood and let there be piss in one of the aisles - white folks would be throwing a fit and that sh!t would get mopped up in 2.5 seconds.  In a black neighborhood we'll just step over it and won't say anything.

I guess my point is, we as a people are too accepting of substandard environments or service, and sometimes to our detriment.  Now, all that said, I agree with A that a brand new building will have very little effect on Howard's ranking, but that's mostly because I think the rankings are bullsh!t to begin with.  Anytime you can have a school jump 10, 15, 20 points in a ranking in one year when the school itself hasn't changed itself in any way since the previous year I think that speaks to the inaccuracy of the ranking system itself but that's a whole other topic for another thread.

To bring it back to Howard, my point in bringing up the substandard environment/services there is to say while they do exist in our community unfortunately, which includes our law schools, they have less to do with rankings than bar passage, employment ops, starting salaries, etc.  Howard tends to do well in those categories (except the bar passage) and that's what really counts.  Law school is, after all, professional school; the whole purpose is to put you into a job.


"A lawyer's either a social engineer or a parasite on society. A social engineer is a highly skilled...lawyer who understands the Constitution of the U.S. and knows how to explore its uses in the solving of problems of local communities and in bettering [our] conditions."
Charles H. Houston