And according to an article by University of Missouri law professor Ben Trachtenberg, to be published in the June 2013 Nebraska Law Review, the biggest question is what took them so long.
For years, he notes, law schools nationwide have been routinely practicing the kind of illegal marketing tactics that would get any other marketer hauled up before the FTC – with no consequences other than the forced resignation of two law school deans over as many years.
“In their efforts to maintain enrollment,” Trachtenberg writes, “law school officials have engaged in deceit and misrepresentation,” using “highly misleading advertising,” “misleading statistics” and “bald-faced lies.”
“The abuses here weren’t so small,” one legal blogger notes:
Law schools made specific representations about salaries, scholarships, and other facts to encourage six-figure investments. The people making the representations were professionals with advanced degrees, who had inside knowledge of the legal industry. Most of the people receiving the representations were college students with relatively little knowledge of either law schools or law practice.
Lies, damn lies and statistics
One example of misleading marketing, which Trachtenberg calls a “brazen falsehood,” was falsifying undergraduate GPA and LSAT scores.
Another is padding graduates’ employment and salary statistics. Read more →