In arguably the first "real" casualty of the law school bubble's burst, the Whittier College Board of Trustees has voted to close Whittier Law School.
We believe we have looked at every realistic option to continue a successful law program. Unfortunately, these efforts did not lead to a desired outcome.The law school leadership is disappointed at their little game being over.
Accordingly, on April 15, 2017 the Board voted not to enroll new 1L classes at the Law School beginning this fall.
As is well known, the last few years have been extremely difficult for law schools across the country. Whittier Law School felt those challenges keenly and we took significant steps to address them. Sadly, our sponsoring institution opted to abandon the Law School rather than provide the time and resources needed to finish paving the path to ongoing viability and success. We believe this action was unwise, unwarranted, and unfounded.Apt, as attending Whittier Law School itself has been an "unwise, unwarranted, and unfounded" decision for prospective law school applicants for some time.
According to Law School Transparency, Whittier's 2015 graduating class had an employment score of 19.1%, an underemployment score of 48.9%, and a bar passage rate of 38.1%. The non-discounted cost of this train-wreck is $284,377. In 2016, Whittier enrolled a class of 132 with 25-75 LSAT split of 144-149.
I am not sure Whittier provided a valuable service when it was founded in 1966, but today it is a deadweight piece of foul shit that needed flushing. Literally everyone in the legal profession - and the clients we represent and that intangible sense of "justice" we supposedly uphold - except Whittier Law School administrators benefits by its closure.
We can debate how many negative-value institutions should close, but few people with any real credibility would defend Whittier's existence. So let us celebrate this particular domino falling and hope that it is not a one-off loss of faith by a rogue small college.