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Author Topic: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'  (Read 10936 times)

nicknaylor

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #40 on: June 26, 2006, 07:43:13 PM »
Dear Ms. P,
You are welcome.  Although I do enjoy reading speculative comments online, and in fact encourage them,  just remember that your 16 page paper must not contain any speculation.  Only facts.  Objective Facts.  Concrete Objective Facts.  And then of course your own opinions and any other further subjective speculations.  I wish I could print that article out, but I went over my print quota at school because I printed out 150 fliers of my roommate making out with this one skeezo he met at a bar.  She had about 37 years and 250 lbs to her name.  If only the summer print quotas were larger, I would have printed out many more fliers.

Sincerely,

nicknaylor

thorc954

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #41 on: July 05, 2006, 11:01:15 PM »
Okay, I read the sanders article. I think the important point is that at some time AA has to stop playing a role. It is used in undergrad, law school, and in love firms. If the person isnt as sucessful in undergrad and law school, when do you say enough is enough? when do you stop using race and racism as a reason for the person's inadequacies?  I strongly believe that minorities are given unequal grade school educations and in many cases dont have the access to the sat prep material. okay, fine. consider race/socio-economic condition in undergrad selection. Okay, after that, undergrad teaches effective writing skills. Maybe consider lower test scores on the lsat. After you have gone to law school you have had the opportunity to catch up. You either do terribly or you succeed. AA cant continue to play an influence in an individual's life indefinitely. Eventually, you must consider merit or undeserving people are hired outof quotas.  Granted, sandars research included some invalid and unsubstantiated points, but there was indeed some merit to his comments. 

oh, and i woulda used my print credits for the same thing.

queencruella

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #42 on: July 05, 2006, 11:28:51 PM »
I don't think that this is a case where AA gives "undeserving" candidates a chance. Presumably jobs at top firms go interview people from top law schools, and I think that realistically there isn't going to be a huge difference between the people who finish in the top 10% and the people who finish slightly lower at the same school. Setting grade/rank requirements is just a quick and easy way to weed out applicants, and anyone who has worked for a while knows that there's more to doing a job well than just knowing the material. To be "undeserving" I think that the people hired under the AA policy would need to have done terribly in law school, which does not seem to be the case.

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #43 on: November 29, 2006, 09:31:22 PM »
tag
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Elephant Lee

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #44 on: November 29, 2006, 10:06:57 PM »
I think the important point is that at some time AA has to stop playing a role. It is used in undergrad, law school, and in love firms.
Following the Sander trail here, and found this gem. Freudian slip! Which one of these posters was he lovin' on?
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mae8

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #45 on: December 01, 2006, 02:15:00 AM »
I don't think that this is a case where AA gives "undeserving" candidates a chance. Presumably jobs at top firms go interview people from top law schools, and I think that realistically there isn't going to be a huge difference between the people who finish in the top 10% and the people who finish slightly lower at the same school. Setting grade/rank requirements is just a quick and easy way to weed out applicants, and anyone who has worked for a while knows that there's more to doing a job well than just knowing the material. To be "undeserving" I think that the people hired under the AA policy would need to have done terribly in law school, which does not seem to be the case.

i have no idea why im getting into these conversations again but.... per the essentially undisputed data in the study the median black associate at large firms was 18th percentile. so if we're going to discuss this lets not waste our time talking about the qualification difference between top 10% and those "slightly lower." is 18th percentile undeserving? to me the sander conclusions all flow together quite well. even if the "old boys network" and any racism in firms was eliminated i dont see how people wouldnt expect disparate results based on huge differences in grades.
Emory '09

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #46 on: December 01, 2006, 02:25:09 AM »
I don't think that this is a case where AA gives "undeserving" candidates a chance. Presumably jobs at top firms go interview people from top law schools, and I think that realistically there isn't going to be a huge difference between the people who finish in the top 10% and the people who finish slightly lower at the same school. Setting grade/rank requirements is just a quick and easy way to weed out applicants, and anyone who has worked for a while knows that there's more to doing a job well than just knowing the material. To be "undeserving" I think that the people hired under the AA policy would need to have done terribly in law school, which does not seem to be the case.

i have no idea why im getting into these conversations again but.... per the essentially undisputed data in the study the median black associate at large firms was 18th percentile. so if we're going to discuss this lets not waste our time talking about the qualification difference between top 10% and those "slightly lower." is 18th percentile undeserving? to me the sander conclusions all flow together quite well. even if the "old boys network" and any racism in firms was eliminated i dont see how people wouldnt expect disparate results based on huge differences in grades.

I'm not sure why I'm getting into this again either.  Could you please tell me a bit more about why you think grades would be such a good index of the kinds of things that make a good young associate?  And if they are, to the exclusion of other factors (such as community service, leadership positions in student organizations, prestigious internships, quality of professors, bar prep course, etc.), then what would you think about law firms' expanding recruiting into lower-ranked law schools and HBCUs, but always focusing on the same top-tenth or top-third students? 

Also, have you seen any studies of how black attorneys with good GPAs/class ranks or white attorneys with low GPAs/class ranks fare relative to the black attorneys with low GPAs/class ranks?  If so, do they bear out your conclusion that there is a big gap between the 18th percentile HYS student and the 90th percentile HYS student, regardless of race?
That's cool how you referenced a case.

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mae8

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #47 on: December 01, 2006, 02:54:03 AM »
I don't think that this is a case where AA gives "undeserving" candidates a chance. Presumably jobs at top firms go interview people from top law schools, and I think that realistically there isn't going to be a huge difference between the people who finish in the top 10% and the people who finish slightly lower at the same school. Setting grade/rank requirements is just a quick and easy way to weed out applicants, and anyone who has worked for a while knows that there's more to doing a job well than just knowing the material. To be "undeserving" I think that the people hired under the AA policy would need to have done terribly in law school, which does not seem to be the case.

i have no idea why im getting into these conversations again but.... per the essentially undisputed data in the study the median black associate at large firms was 18th percentile. so if we're going to discuss this lets not waste our time talking about the qualification difference between top 10% and those "slightly lower." is 18th percentile undeserving? to me the sander conclusions all flow together quite well. even if the "old boys network" and any racism in firms was eliminated i dont see how people wouldnt expect disparate results based on huge differences in grades.

I'm not sure why I'm getting into this again either.  Could you please tell me a bit more about why you think grades would be such a good index of the kinds of things that make a good young associate?  And if they are, to the exclusion of other factors (such as community service, leadership positions in student organizations, prestigious internships, quality of professors, bar prep course, etc.), then what would you think about law firms' expanding recruiting into lower-ranked law schools and HBCUs, but always focusing on the same top-tenth or top-third students? 

Also, have you seen any studies of how black attorneys with good GPAs/class ranks or white attorneys with low GPAs/class ranks fare relative to the black attorneys with low GPAs/class ranks?  If so, do they bear out your conclusion that there is a big gap between the 18th percentile HYS student and the 90th percentile HYS student, regardless of race?

ask your profs what they think is the difference between a great exam and a bad one. maybe they'll say it's random or maybe they'll say it demonstrates substantive differences ranging from ability to write effectively, work under pressure, or perform legal analysis. maybe it just tests the ability to jump through hoops and judge what an irrational prof wants, not unlike being able to judge what an irrational partner wants.

personally i do think grades are much more important in predicting success of a young associate than community service or leadership positions in student orgs.
Emory '09

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #48 on: December 01, 2006, 09:46:47 AM »
You're in law school, right?  Most of our professors here are humble enough to tell us that law school exams test a certain narrow range of skills, not ability to understand the law or function as a lawyer.  Indeed, they constantly say stupid things like "Grades are not very important" (Yalies!).  I'm sure this is, in part, a self-interested and cynical statement intended to shut down requests for grade changes and such, but I think there's plenty of truth to it.

On the other hand, sure, I can imagine that issue-spotting is a key skill for attorneys (though not for associates in their first several years of practice at biglaw firms, alas, since document review and such really don't require this kind of insight).  But unless you have one professor for more than one semester, in a typical exam-based class, you are not able to adjust to learn how to "jump through hoops and judge what an [s/he] wants" on the exam.  In the firm, one has much more time to learn, through both trial and error and (more important) a network of knowledgeable peers and superiors, how to please those senior associates and partners.  Being able to listen to social cues, accept criticism, and adjust one's behavior accordingly are all very different qualities than those that lead to superior performance on an issue-spotter.  And if you've ever read model student answers to law school exams, you know that the writing quality falls far short of that one might seek in a legal memo.

I'm not saying grades don't tell you something.  I'm saying that they may not tell you all of the things you need to know about someone before deciding to ask her to join your firm.  Again, I haven't seen any good research on this, and I'm always open to evidence that I am wrong.  I think looking at the data for other associates with poor grades and for black associates with good grades might help us sort this out.

Also, I'd be interested in your thoughts on whether top students at lower-ranked law schools might be better recruiting candidates for firms, since you seem to believe that the emphasis on GPA/class rank makes sense.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.

redemption

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Re: Law Firm 'Aggressive Racial Preferences'
« Reply #49 on: December 01, 2006, 10:55:32 AM »
i have no idea why im getting into these conversations again but....

I do.  :)