Tuesday, November 15, 2016

University of Michigan Law Turns to Play-Doh Therapy

One of the things OTLSS has striven to avoid, by my view at any rate, is partisan politics as regards the Law School Scam.  Yes, we have mocked and criticized various claims, causes, and positions put forth by the Cartel, but we mock them as to how they hinder development and growth of students into graduates who are able to pass the bar exam of their choice and become functioning members of legal society.  While we may debate the utility of various "Law and X" classes, for example, or other areas of personal, idiosyncratic interest to particular LawProfs, it is all done through the eye of "Does this grossly and unfairly increase the sticker price for a JD?  Does this help students obtain relevant theoretical and practical skills?  Are you merely preaching the values of liberty and justice as a pretext for just getting asses in seats, because times are tight?"

I think this particular election cycle has been difficult for all concerned, regardless of one's own political spectrum.  And while we are all exhausted and ready to move on for the most part, the cynical Gen-Xer that I am can only express pure disbelief as regards the following coping and recovery strategies proffered by institutions such as the University of Michigan Law School:

Total Frat Move reported Thursday on the event, titled “Post-election Self-care with Food and Play,” hosted by the law school’s “embedded psychologist” Reena Sheth. Here’s the description:

Join us for delicious and comforting food with opportunity to experience some stress-busting, self-care activities such as coloring sheets, play dough, positive card-making, Legos, and bubbles with your fellow law students.

Writer Dillon Cheverere said the event does not appear to be “a joke”:

I want it to be a joke so badly, but it is not a joke. It’s real. Students have the chance to “post-election self-care” by decompressing and enjoying snacks and playing with toys designed for toddlers.


To be fair, when I graduated from law school in 2005 with a ton of debt and no prospects, I too probably wanted to play with Legos and binge on comfort food - to escape the mind-bending reality of having ruined not only my own career trajectory and earning potential, but the financial well-being of my family as well.  Instead of offering me coloring sheets and toys, however, I was told to "get a job" while the Cartel laughed all the way to the bank.  "Sorry, you can't use the law school computer lab resources because you are a graduate, and we can't have you loitering around here and spooking the lower classes.  Sorry, it is your fault you actually believed the employment statistics in our brochures.  Sorry, ultimately your employment status is not our problem."

Until it became their problem due to declining enrollment, of course.  But these overall trends have been detailed on this site and others.  

Eleven years later, what does it say when a law school proffers a response such as this to difficulty and disappointment?  Who at UMich Law is proud of this (as the event has been "scrubbed", I guess not many)?  What students think this is a good idea?  One wonders how future lawyers will deal with difficult clients, to say nothing of the stress of juggling pre-trial calendars and trials themselves.  Or other real-life responsibilities in general.  I also find it disturbing that a recommended Law School response to student difficulty is to retreat into infantilism.  How will jilted students respond later, when some or many of them cannot find employment?  Temper tantrums?  Funny, that has been the previous accusation by the Cartel against the Scambloggers...

At least according to LST, University of Michigan Law grads probably have less to cry about than many other schools on average.  In any event, this continues to show the stark difference between educational-value-provided and cost, and the difference between real-life and living in the academic bubble.  LawProfs, Deans, and Admins get paid, yo, regardless of your own personal results.  Here is a coloring book to help you feel better about getting scammed.

Prospective students, is this the enviroment you are looking for when it comes to your legal education?  Is this kind of "help" and "support" worth $60k-plus a year?  Are you really looking for Day-Care for Adults?

If you answered yes, then I submit you are in for a rude, rude awakening as regards the long-term effects of the Law School Scam and the market it will ultimately vomit you into.  Law School should be actually be equipping you for the world, not helping you retreat from it.   Perhaps that is too much to ask for in these turbulent times.

31 comments:

  1. Judges call people who go to law school and need nursery school activities to cope with the outcome of a free and fair election conducted under the rule of law "sophisticated consumers."

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  2. By failing to teach our youth to be even modestly resilient in the face of even the most modest of perceived unfavorable outcomes, we have failed our youth and our country.

    I blame the parents, the educational system, the safe-spacers, and, especially, the PC police.

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    1. This is all by design.

      When the bankers and academics tried this same scam a hundred years ago, and pretty much every 20 years before that, the people would get so pissed they'd start killing them. Bankers used to jump out of buildings rather than face an angry mob.

      Nowadays bankers and academics just laugh it up, in perfect safety amongst their victims, whom they lord over.

      Can you imagine if every family that had a kid that got scammed actually got pissed about it and was out for blood? How long do you think the charade could keep up? Where would these scammers even hide?

      Delete
  3. Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance KingNovember 15, 2016 at 10:04 AM

    You are putting too much stock into this. It sounds like a party to me and nothing else. It sounds like an "outlet" or a healthy way of dealing with stress. This is a good lesson that alcohol, drugs or any addictive behaviors are not a productive coping mechanism. Maybe, just maybe, if other schools had activities like this, LAP programs wouldn't be in such demand? So, if one encounters scheduling conflicts and non-paying clients (they aren't difficult when they pay), do you drink or take a bike ride? That's the message.

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    1. What trendoid self-help bestseller did you read THAT in?

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  4. "Self-care with Food and Play" sounds like some sort of pornographic fetish

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  5. MAKE LAW SCHOOL GREAT AGAIN !!!

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    1. Awesome. That should be our new slogan.

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    2. Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance KingNovember 15, 2016 at 6:37 PM

      That's incredible! Did you come up with that on your own? I think a law school is stronger if it works together.

      Delete
  6. If you can't find a job after graduating, just remember: there's no use in crying over spilt chocolate milk.

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    Replies
    1. but the Playdoh will dry out if you don't put the lids on.

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  7. I can't believe they mentioned playdough without giving me a trigger warning. F'ing insensitive.

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  8. Great write-up of this absurdity, which is obviously an especially ridiculous variation of the University safe spaces fad.

    The Law School's embedded psychologist, Reena Sheth, Ph.D, earns $55,200 per year. So this comforting law school Romper Room is not quite free.

    http://umsalary.info/deptsearch.php?Dept=Counseling+Services&Year=0&Campus=

    Dr. Sheth's profile page at the University of Michigan states that her "approach to therapy is integrative. I draw upon relational-psychodynamic, existential-phenomenological, and indigenous mental health traditions."

    https://caps.umich.edu/profile/reena-sheth-phd

    So, you know, it is not mere Play-Doh. It is really relational-psychodynamic-Doh, if not existential-phenomenological-Doh. Very indigenous-Doh too, though I am sure not in a culturally appropriative-Doh way.

    I seriously hope that this was a one-off blunder. Many of these law students will rely on counseling services for assistance with such non-infantile problems as major depression and substance abuse. They deserve better advice than to go blow bubbles.

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    1. Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance KingNovember 16, 2016 at 12:32 PM

      Looking at Dr. Seth's profile, do we have to wonder anymore why Trump won? America! Fuck Yeah! As a lefty, I am even attracted to the Trump brand after reading her profile. Its psycho babble. Imagine for a moment if our Founding Patriots sat down for THERAPY!!!!!

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    2. What the hell does this woman know about "indigenous mental health traditions"?

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    3. Imagining The Open ToadNovember 16, 2016 at 10:05 PM

      "approach to therapy is integrative. I draw upon relational-psychodynamic, existential-phenomenological, and indigenous mental health traditions."

      Recalls to mind Damon Wayans as Oswald Bates some quarter century ago in the show, "In Living Color", except of course good doktor Sheth is trying to be serious (Dammit!).

      E.g., “Now, if I may retain my liquids here for one moment. I’d like to continue the redundance of my quote, unquote intestinal tract, you see because to preclude on the issue of world domination would only circumcise the revelation that is reflective upon the Afro-disiatic symptoms which now perpetrates the Jheri Curis activation.”

      (longer version at)
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ROOi5xagxg

      BUT! Trigger Warning! Note that in this spot, Oswald is word saladaciously shilling for higher education.


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    4. Imagining The Open ToadNovember 16, 2016 at 10:07 PM

      OG - asking that she be required to know anything about "indigenous mental health traditions" is a bridge too far.

      It is sufficient only that she be able to utter it.

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    5. This is one of the myriad reasons HRC lost. Imagine if you are a Blue Collar wife about 61 years old and working the Dollar General in Ohio 60 hors per week for 38K and the mine bankruptcy and took your husband's 401K with it....and you read this.... 60K to sit down with a bunch of law students and chat with them? In my view, like we did in law school, work out their own damn problems

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    6. I want to send all these people a few hours north to the UP, and leave them in the fucking snow. Love, a Yooper who knows that there is no crying in law school (but it's still a scam).

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  9. I wonder if student debt has any relationship to the rise in something called "adult coloring books." Pathetic.

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    1. When I saw a reference to adult coloring books in an opponent's brief, I assumed that it referred to coloring books that were adult in content. I was astonished to learn that adults play with coloring books.

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    2. Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance KingNovember 16, 2016 at 9:32 PM

      Just curious, what was the issue in the brief that prompted the reference to adult coloring books?

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    3. I had better not divulge that information.

      Suffice it to say that I had never heard of an adult coloring book.

      Delete
  10. Hilarious.

    I remember the spring of 2008, when I was about to graduate law school without a job, and with a new son. (I had made a gamble in giving up an engineering career because I thought if I spent money on improving myself, it would lead to a better, more fulfilling career as a patent attorney. I actually believed the false employment numbers the school put out.

    Depressed and anxious as hell, I decide to avail myself of the law school psychologist.

    He said I should read a book.
    2 years later, and with a lot of anxiety and medication, I finally found a JD Advantage job. But I'm not going to forget what these law sch$$l clowns did.

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  11. I'm not so sure that such emotionally fragile people, as would need this type of support in order to deal with the results of a Presidential election, should even be in law school. The law is too rough-and-tumble a career option for these delicate types.

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  12. Really fighting the Battle of Belleau Wood up there in Michigan aren't they?

    Does nobody have an older brother, grizzled uncle, or f*cked-off veteran neighbor to kick 'em in the ass anymore? Michigan, Good day, pusscake!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1dUxY2-Ua98

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  13. Imagining The Open DoggieNovember 16, 2016 at 9:48 PM

    One day, these students will be whole again.

    Until then, thank G_d that in addition to “Post-election Self-care with Food and Play", many other elite universities are taking the self-obviously correct choice of offering comfort doggie therapy on campus by students who just need a warm, furry hug and a sloppy, wet nose.

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    1. My law school did that. I quipped that the canine presence raised the average IQ of the place.

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  14. Imagining The Open ToadNovember 17, 2016 at 1:40 PM

    Howdy Folks. Happy Holidays!

    http://www.abajournal.com/news/article/aba_puts_one_law_school_on_probation_and_censures_another

    CSOL and (V)Alpo, respectively.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  15. Legos have re-sale value. Grab the Legos.

    I'm not going to criticize anyone's coping strategies, but the fact that law schools are now claiming to be concerned about students' mental health is ironic (and ridiculous).

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