Wednesday, March 20, 2013

InfiFLAW

UPDATE:  I shoulda done a little more "research", as the shills/haters like to say!  Nando did a nice takedown of this awhile back, and wanted to bring this up as well. 

http://thirdtierreality.blogspot.com/2009/12/three-law-schools-owned-by-one-company.html

My comments follow:

Well folks, now they are not even trying to cover over the motive behind producing unnecessary JD candidates.  Academia and Corporate Profiteering have merged:
In any tough market, consolidation takes place.  We’ve seen it in multiple industries, be it banking, defense contracting, or telecommunications, to name a scant few.  As the applicant pool of marks becomes harder and harder to mine, welcome to the rise of the “law school consortium.”
InfiLaw's mission is to "establish the benchmark of inclusive excellence in professional education for the 21st Century."   This mission is supported by three key pillars (1) centering on “serving the underserved,” (2) providing an education that is "student-outcome centered," and (3) graduating students who are "practice-ready."
All laudable goals in principle, but why now, all of a sudden?  The “underserved” meme has been beat to death already, but again, what “underserved” market are we talking about, and why do more URMs need to be bilked out of their future income potential?  There are already 200+ ABA approved law schools that have flung open their doors for decades – does this not provide adequate “access?”  How is adding yet more JDs, served or underserved, to the oversaturated legal market “student-outcome centered?”  And let’s be honest - nobody cared heretofore about “practice-ready” until the applicants wised up to the cost-benefit analysis and the law schools realized they had already picked all the low-hanging fruit.  Practice-ready does not magically create market demand in any event.
A brief glance at the Executive Team shows a variety of backgrounds: former CFOs, MBAs, VPs of HR, and high-level Marketers, to name a few.  Does this sound like a crowd interested in producing “legal scholarship,” defending “liberty,” or pursuing “ justice?” No way.  This is pump-and-dump to the max.
The entire management team is Six Sigma certified and committed to a culture grounded in personal humility and vulnerability-based trust.  The organization models itself upon principles set forth by leading experts on productivity, employee engagement, personal growth and development, and process excellence.


Blah blah blah TQM blah blah blah Six-Sigma blah blah blah Kanban blah blah blah Just-In-Time manufacturing.  Please.  Give us all a break.  Stop insulting our collective intelligence.  All the MBA-speak in the world does nothing to cover up the fact that this is about making money on the backs of marks.  Period.  On a personal note, having actually worked as an engineer had having actually used “six-sigma” methodologies and the like, it burns me to see these jackals spew this nonsense, as they clearly have NO IDEA what they are talking about in the first place.  But it “sounds good” and garners credibility, so whatevs.

 InfiLaw is backed by Sterling Partners, a private equity firm with over 25 years of experience partnering with organizations in building market-leading enterprises.
If you needed any more evidence as to what this is really about, look no further.  Sterling Partners will expect a handsome ROI.  Coffee is for closers. 
Turning to the schools themselves, the members of the consortium are Charlotte SOL, Florida Costal SOL, and Phoenix SOL.  Thanks to tireless efforts by the fine folks at Law School Transparency (who are doing God’s work, I might add),  let’s take a look at the “student outcomes”:


Wow.  Blech.  $200k+ sticker-prices for stomach-churning outcomes.  If you need yet more information, I believe Nando has a thing or two to say about all these schools over at Third Tier Reality.
Prospective 0Ls, run away.  Please, I am begging you.  If you have the money and social connections, then by all means go to a T14 law school.  If not, there are many other things one can do with one’s life, be you fresh out of undergrad or an experienced non-traditional student.  These other vocations are not mere consolation prizes.  Find something else to do that will not leave you with a millstone of student debt around your neck and no appreciable opportunities. 
The people behind Infilaw, and their member schools, view you as an income stream – nothing more.  Listen to the commenters on this blog and many, many others – there is no profit motive here in trying to direct you away from the mistake of the worthless JD.  No one makes money trying to convince people NOT to do something or NOT to buy a product.
Higher education has morphed from a public good into a corporate-backed commodity.  As such, respond in kind and vote with your pocketbook.  Avoid this madness.

5 comments:

  1. 1.

    What a disgrace, and thank you for bringing this "consortium" to our attention. It is like you say nothing more than business people making money from marks.

    I can not stand the idea that URMs somehow need special access. There are already 200 schools. They all have URMs. They all actively recruit URMs. There is no barrier here. Any one of the bottom 100 schools would give anyone with a pulse and an LSAT score a seat, URM or not. So Infilaw or whatever it is needs to stop this abuse of URMs.

    Law school newsflash. URMs are not there to be abused. It's not 1950 (or 1850). They are not your slaves to make you money.

    This is for-profit education madness at its peak. What a rip off. What a shameless group of people.

    ANYONE ATTENDING ONE OF THOSE SCHOOLS IS BEING SCAMMED.

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  2. Anyone attending a for-profit school is a fucking idiot. Plain and simple. Why would you ever want to have a third of your tuition money go to profit for investors, especially when there are countless establishments that at least try to pretend that your tuition money is going to your education (although much of it goes to professors.)

    For-profit schools should be banned from ever being allowed to take student loan money. This is just a no brainer.

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    1. I would never hire anyone who went to a for profit school. It is a mark of a fool.

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  3. The current for-profit law schools are bad, period.

    I would have no problem with a for-profit school in any field if they provide good outcomes for their students. A for-profit law school which, say, indebted their average students by $60K and placed 90% of their graduates in 50K+ jobs would be be great and probably better than most Tier 1's.

    I'm not opposed to calling out money-making machines that thrive on the high debts of marginal students. But let's be real, most law schools are money-making machines and operate very similarly. Just pretend the employees are the shareholders and all differences evaporate.

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    1. That be true, Antiro. Non-profit schools differ from for-profit schools in that the money goes to investors rather than professors. It would be interesting to see whether salaries at for-profit schools are less than those at non-profits. I bet that they are.

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