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February 22, 2013

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confused

Dean Yellen,

In your first post on Faculty Lounge, I presented a couple questions that I hoped you would answer either in the comments or in a subsequent post. They have not yet been answered. Here they are again:

Your law school's mission: "Loyola University Chicago School of Law is a student-focused law center inspired by the Jesuit tradition of academic excellence, intellectual openness, and service to others. Our mission is to educate diverse, talented students to be responsible leaders in a rapidly changing, interdependent world, to prepare graduates who will be ethical advocates for justice and the rule of law, and to contribute to a deeper understanding of law and legal institutions through a commitment to research, scholarship and public service. (Adopted by the law faculty, 2002)"
http://www.luc.edu/law/about/mission.html
Your Law School's Outcomes: 55% of the 2011 class obtained full-time jobs requiring bar passage.
http://www.lstscorereports.com/?school=loyola-chicago&show=NALP

Only a small portion of the 55% earn enough money to justify the $40,000/year tuition your school charges. Please reconcile the differences between the school's purported mission and the outcomes it produces for its students. Also, please explain how the more than half of your class that is mired in debt induced poverty can even begin to "be ethical advocates for justice and the rule of law, and to contribute to a deeper understanding of law and legal institutions through a commitment to research, scholarship and public service."
______________________________________________________________________________

Speaking of Emperors of Legal Education, don't you serve that role at Loyola, Dean Yellen? In this post, you are basically acknowledging that a good portion of graduates from Loyola end up with poor outcomes. As Dean, doesn't the responsibility to enroll only the number of students that have a reasonable chance of success in the legal field fall on your shoulders?
You talk about cutting the size of your class by 25-30 students. That token cut competely ignores the market reality that less than half your graduates (conservatively) are obtaining jobs which justify their investment. That begs the question, what is the constituency that you are serving as Dean? If it was the students, you would be taking significant steps to lower tuition and drastically cut the size of your class and payroll. As that is clearly not what you plan to do, may I suggest the possibility that your main focus as Dean is the wants and needs of the faculty? If that's the case, you may want to make that fact a bit clearer to your consumers. Perhaps a disclaimer on your website that Loyola Chicago exists to provide cushy employment to its professors and secondarily, to give a small section of its students the opportunity to have a meaningful legal career.

Kyle McEntee

The Council decided against the individual offices in December at the Council meeting in Denver. There was minor support for it, but most on the Council agreed that it was ridiculous and made them look tone death. The attitude was: we'll probably do this anyway at our schools no matter what, but is this really necessary? As we agree, I wish they'd apply the same logic to the rest of the standards.

I honestly don't understand how it made it out of the committee in the first place.

Kyle McEntee

Ha, "tone death." Oops.

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