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Author Topic: My law school screwed me!!!  (Read 9996 times)

Lampshade Punk

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Re: My law school screwed me!!!
« Reply #40 on: June 05, 2008, 01:29:10 PM »
I really like the forum because most people are intelligent and the
Tell me Timmy, are some of the interesting discussions you like on this site the ones where you are dishing LSAT advice to pre-laws, based on the experience of getting 170+ on practice exams? Or are they the ones where you give application advice to posters, when you yourself have never gone through the process?

If you read my posts you will see I have gone through the process. I may be deferring for a year beacuse I'm retaking my LSAT and expect to get a much better score. I made a lot of mistakes during the process and taking my LSAT for the first time. I have fixed my errors and learned a lot in the process. So I think I have a lot of advice about applying. I don't have any advice about law schools and haven't given any, other than my opinions about prestige and rankings.

45 to 1 ratio of "worst people ever" to nice people in law school tops.  if you go to law school, chances are you are a pretty disgusting person.

PSUDSL08

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Re: My law school screwed me!!!
« Reply #41 on: June 05, 2008, 02:31:59 PM »
From a legal standpoint, I haven't taken remedies and it's been a while since I brushed up on contracts, but Strictly is probably correct that the OP lacks a viable legal claim (unless there is some type of unjust enrichment/quantum meruit claim allowing him to recoup his tuition money). Also, I doubt that the school proceeded with its retroactive change of the graduation requirements without consulting an attorney or two about it's potential liability and obtaining an advisory opinion from the ABA on its proposed change.

From a moral standpoint, I'm going to go out on a limb and say the reason Strictly has no perceivable compassion for the OP is because he believes subpar students at non-ABA accredited schools lack the intelligence and/or motivation (or both) to be a law student and/or practicing attorney in the first place. I have to agree with Strictly when it comes to the OP's potential competency in the field of law. To be blunt, the odds are heavily stacked against the OP of not only passing the bar, but finding legal employment OF ANY SORT even if his school's graduation requirements weren't retroactively changed. Most legal markets are already flooded to being with..and I don't think it's far off to assume that no employer spotting a non-ABA accredited school and no GPA listed on a resume (inferring subpar performance) are going to bring the OP in for an interview for a position other than a paralegal or document review job. Overall, the OP's choice to remain in school after his first year was not a wise investment as it pertains to his legal career.

However, after meeting the school's strict graduation requirements for two of his three years spent at the school, I think it's highly unfair leave the OP in a position to have to explain at non-legal interviews why he hasn't pursued meaningful employment in the last 3 years. If he obtains the degree, a non-legal employer isn't going to pry into the particulars of his academic record at the school and can fairly assume that he (1) decided that a career in law isn't for him (2) was incapable of passing the bar or gaining legal employment but (3) has the drive to work the long hours necessary to succeed in the non-legal position applied for.

RobWreck

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Re: My law school screwed me!!!
« Reply #42 on: June 05, 2008, 08:51:39 PM »
I know you're retaking the courses and I hope you ace them and complete your degree. If you decide to make a noisy withdrawal, or even to make some noise after you finish school...aside from contacting the ABA, here's what I'd do.

1. Look up your school's practicing alumni and send out a mass email/letter discussing what happened to you. Since these alumni were not subject to the same rigid ex-post facto curriculum changes, it might be enough to get them fired up too. Many of them who were in your academic position who are now fine practicing attorneys might go to bat for you with the administration. If the administration gets the feel that the alumni are disgusted with what is going on, the threat of bad publicity and/or withdrawn alumni donations might be enough for them to make the new rules applicable only to students starting in 2009.

2. Find any type of academic complaint/grievance website, newsletter or whatever and tell them your story. You might just be saving someone like yourself 3 more years of expense and frustration.

I'm a vindictive SOB, so if I were you, I'd try to screw your school (or at least the current administration) over whether or not you end up graduating. I wish you the best of luck man..

I'll tell you what. If I get out of this mess, I will make it my mission to make sure prospective law students do not go to this school. What is more, if they ever ask for money I'll send them something besides money. Thanks for the comment.


While I can whole-heartedly support the idea of being a vindictive SOB towards a school that did you wrong, do consider whether you have any friends among your classmates who have something to lose having their alma mater's already shaky reputation further harmed. Taking the matter to the alumni **may** be a better option...
Good luck,
Rob
St. John's University School of Law '11
Part-time PM Division
Admitted in NY

jeffislouie

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Re: My law school screwed me!!!
« Reply #43 on: June 06, 2008, 11:39:30 AM »
"Western State University School of Law decided to make some changes. It added an additional requirement to graduate. Students were now required to get above a certain grade in a number of classes from that point on or they would not graduate. If a student failed to graduate, he or she can retake some classes for a semester to meet the requirement. If the student fails to meet the requirement, the student is given his walking papers. In addition, the school did away with the curve, deflating grades across the board, making it more difficult to see those grades. We pleaded with the administration. We argued that the requirements are unfair to those students who made it this far and who would otherwise be graduating. In fact, a good percentage of the students would not know if they will graduate until they received their last law school grade. Well, that is exactly what happened to me.

Here is my gripe. Following the announcement I did everything I could to increase my grades. I met with professors more often. I wrote more practice exams. I have been getting close, but not close enough. Still, Western State University School of Law was perfectly happy taking 3 years of my tuition. "

Hey folks, let's not get all wrapped up in vengence here.  I'm changing my opinion after careful review and a little thought.
Basically, the OP is upset because he didn't graduate from law school.  Re-read what I cut and pasted from his post.
The school, unhappy with a student body full of slackers who were barely making it as it was, made some changes they thought would encourage people to work harder and acheive better grades.  They removed the curve, which many of us would prefer, and grades went DOWN.  *what?*  Then they made a policy that to pass a class, you needed to acheive a certain letter grade.  The OP couldn't make that happen.
So.  What was the letter grade requirement?  Was it a C?  My school requires that students maintain a GPA higher than 2.25 to graduate.  If, at the end of 3 years, your GPA comes out to 2.24 or below, you don't graduate and have to take additional classes until your GPA meets the requirement.
Not only that, but the OP was well aware of the changes and continued at the school for an additional year.  He 'tried' to get good grades, but didn't make the cut.  Now, as if by some surprise, he isn't graduating.  And now he's upset.  If his grades had been better, perhaps he could have transferred?  Isn't the right time to complain about policy changes to the ABA when they happen not just when they negatively effect you?
Even more damaging to his case is that by his own admission, he was struggling anyway.  No matter how hard he tried, he just couldn't make it happen.
While I'm not ready to make fun of him and tell him he never should have been a law student, etc.  I will say that his case is weak at best.  It's too bad that it's happened to him, but now is the time to suck it up and deal with your well sub-par school.  I know I wouldn't attend a non-aba law school and I'm also certain I wouldn't attend one with a provisional accreditation, if for no other reason that how volatile and sensitive they are due to the fact that they want the full accreditation....
Sorry dude, you got yourself into this.
Justice is tangy....

jeffislouie

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Re: My law school screwed me!!!
« Reply #44 on: June 06, 2008, 01:22:01 PM »
Jeffislouie has a fair point. The only modification I'd make to it, is that, although it's TRUE that "you got yourself into it," nevertheless people of the they-ought-not-to-do-that-! point of view would suggest that, at least in part, it's the responsibility of a school administration to help you to NOT get yourself into exactly that. I mean, isn't it partly up to a school to give fair warning, and to have academic support offices that can teach you more effective study techniques or diagnose you for ADD or dyslexia or something? If you have exhausted all those opportunities, and in good faith done your best, and in good faith the professors have graded fairly and predictably and accurately (not!), then sure, the student should simply be failed. He is in the wrong discipline, perhaps one that is too academically challenging for him. But on the other hand, if those opportunities aren't there in the first place? Or if the student didn't really 'get' that he was supposed to make use of them until it was SURPRISE! too late? The school's partly on the hook for that.

We don't know what "really" happened because we only have one person's testimony. Mostly it sounds, to me, like a classic "pull the rug out" trick. If you're already on firm footing it's not really an issue, but if ...


The school DID give fair warning (they provided information relating to the change during the students 2L).
They DO have a program designed to help students (http://www.wsulaw.edu/signature-programs/stellar.asp).
And the administration owes you nothing in regards to your success.  YOU are responsible for your own success.  Professors DO grade fairly and accurately.  Predictably?  That's not something anyone can expect from a professor, no matter what level.
There were no surprises here, except I guess the grades the student actually earned.
It may sound like the school threw the OP under the bus by pulling the rug out from under him, but I suspect you are quite alone in that assumption.
OP stated:
1)  The policies changed at the beginning of 2L and he didn't run into trouble until the end of 3L (that's effective notice)
2)  WSU Law has a program called "S.T.E.L.L.A.R." that is free and students are encouraged to attend.  This program is designed to help students study, write, and succeed.

Administrators are under no obligation, implied or explicit, to contact any student to assist them in their success.  I doubt the school was trying to get this student and made their policy changes with plenty of notice to the student body.  The fact that the OP is in trouble isn't the schools fault for changing policy, it's the students fault for not doing well enough to avoid trouble.
Your reasoning, though sensitive and kind, is misguided.  It is like saying the states that changed the legal intoxication definition from .10 bac to .08 bac pulled the rug out from under someone when they got busted for a .09 BAC a year after the law changed.  Didn't the state have an obligation to tell it's citizens how to comply, offer alcohol awareness training, and consult with people who drink too much then drive on how to avoid prosecution.
Ultimately, law school is a harsh place.  The school owes you an education, a facility, and quality teachers.  That's it.  They are not obligated to ensure your success, work with students who don't know they are on the cusp, and guarantee assistance to people who neither ask for it nor take advantage of the existing available help.
Should the law school do what it did?  That's neither yours or my place to say.  The school is trying to get full accreditation from a provisional accreditation, which usually means they have to improve bar passage rates and GPA.  The wrong way to do this is by grade inflation.
Once again I have to say, this is most likely 100% the students fault.
Justice is tangy....

rangerbat

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Re: My law school screwed me!!!
« Reply #45 on: June 09, 2008, 01:14:30 PM »

Secondly, this guy in no way got "screwed". Here are the facts:

1) Dude went to a non-ABA school, which means he was rejected by EVERYONE else (probably even Cooley) and really has no business being in law school.

2) Dude failed at this terrible law school as he could not even muster the minimum GPA to graduate (which by ABA standards is pretty damn low).

3) School changes its policy to conform with ABA in order to earn accredidation and notifies its students effectively.

4) Dude pays no attention to the policy until it effects him personally and bars him from graduating.

5) Dude now wants others to feel bad for him and would like to sue a school to get a law degree.

Sorry pal, this would have ZERO chance of succeeding. I would even go as far to say that it wouldn't pass summary judgement. I refuse to feel bad for someone who limped into law school, then failed, and is now crying about it. Call me whatever you want, I don't care. Its time the OP and others on this board had a reality check.

I want to point out a few things to Strictly who got every single fact wrong. First, WSU is provisionally approved with the ABA. Therefore, it is not a non-ABA school. If you go to the ABA website, you will find WSU listed. Second, my GPA IS high enough to graduate by WSU standards and ABA standards. The requirement that I was not able to meet was the one added at the end of year 2 which required students to get above a certain grade in a number of classes in addition to having a minimum GPA. Third, notifying the students after they already completed close to 2 years may or may not constitute effective notice. You failed to qualify that remark. You probably can't because you are talking out of your ass. Fourth, I don't know what you mean by "dude pays no attention to the policy until it affects him personally." If you think I did not attempt to meet this requirement during my 3rd year then you are a fool. Finally, as I mentioned before, I'm not here to get pity from anyone. I am here to vent and to get useful feedback. The problem with you Strictly is that you make crap up to bolster you argument. That would make your argument bogus. I guess what I am trying to say here is, if your mission is to be an antagonist, you better do better than that.

rangerbat

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Re: My law school screwed me!!!
« Reply #46 on: June 10, 2008, 07:52:12 PM »
Yikes.
Two things to consider:
1) Appeal to the ABA.  Tell them what the school is doing.  Worst case scenario, the ABA threatens to pull accreditation if they don't fix their insane policies.  While this may not help you if the ABA simply pulls the accreditation, it will punish the school and most likely ruin them.
2) Lawsuit.  Consult an attorney.

Let this serve as a cautionary tale.  Schools with provisional aba accreditation are dangerous and may send you out in the world with nothing after they have taken your money.

However, if you plan on practicing in CA, you don't need an ABA approved legal eduacation.  Transfer.

Anybody know how many units can be transferred to another school? I already have all of my units necessary to graduate.