This Saturday is “Dean’s Law Day” at Rutgers Law School in Camden. This day is essentially an “accepted students day” where all of the student accepted by the school are invited to come and meet with students and faculty and get more information before making their final decision on where to attend law school in the coming Fall semester.
Unless you have been living under a rock, you of course know that Rutgers Law is currently suffering from the crisis that is the Rutgers Camden takeover plan being pushed by numerous political forces in New Jersey. There has been substantial talk that once the school becomes Rowan Law School the American Bar Association may require the school to seek reaccreditation, which is an incredibly damaging prospect, and one that is not lost on prospective students.
When I went to Dean’s Law Day in 2009 it was incredibly crowded. People were everywhere. This year the attendees will likely be unable to fill a room. According to an email sent to students from Dean Solomon (because students are encouraged to volunteer to help on Deans Law Day) there will only 80 prospective students attending the event. That is less than half the amount of students who attended last year. Based on the number of volunteers usually available at the event, new students may only outnumber the volunteers 2-1, which should make for either a very smoothly run event, or a lot of really bored volunteers with nothing to do. Dean Solomon’s email subtly referred to the “distractions” we are all working under at the school and thanked the students for their continued spirit.
The only explanation for this horrid display of disinterest could be the merger of Rowan and Rutgers. I for one cannot blame up and coming law students for shying away from Rutgers Law at this time when so much uncertainty surrounds the school. Where you go to law school is a big choice with many things to consider, including potential job prospects and costs like tuition. Both of those huge factors are in question today. The biggest problem with a plan with no details is just that. It has no details. Literally no one knows what is going to happen, and that makes a big life choice such as an investment in professional level education impossible to make.
Unfortunately for Rutgers Law School, this seems as though it will be getting worse before it gets any better if this plan continues to move forward.