Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Blogging About Touro Law Center

Perhaps you have heard Touro Law Center's new radio ad on CBS News Radio, 880 AM. It's a great ad that is targeted to employers, and lets employers know how well prepared Touro Law Center students are to practice law when they graduate. Well, people are listening.

Susan Cartier Liebel graduated from Quinnipiac University School of Law and, upon graduation, started the law firm of Cartier, DeMatteo and Forman, LLC based in Fairfield, Connecticut. After five years, the law firm became Cartier & DeMatteo, LLC as the partners grew into their own. Since 2001, Ms. Liebel has operated the Law Offices of Susan Cartier-Liebel, LLC. In addition, in 2005, Ms. Liebel created the national coaching/consulting firm of Build A Solo Practice, LLC, which she describes as a natural evolution from her professional and life experience.

Ms. Liebel is the author of a blog entitled Build a Solo Practice, and she recently heard Touro's ad on CBS News Radio and penned a blog post about it:

Just today I heard an ad on CBS news radio for Touro Law Center. I wanted to jump for joy but nearly drove into a tree instead because I was so giddy. The radio spot (and I'm paraphrasing) said:

All law students get an education. Our law students are prepared to practice law. Our students get training in their first year, meet judges, do pro bono work and basically can hit the ground running as competent trained associates and practitioners of law.

Can you imagine my stunned but euphoric state when I heard this law school on the radio promoting their students to potential employers (as it was to employers) not through grades but their practical training? (And for those USNWR snobs, I don't know or care where this school is ranked.) Whatever the motivation, the school listened to what employers wanted and what their students wanted. For employers, experience and training in school so the students would come out with practical knowledge the employers were requesting. For the students, this in turn helps them find jobs! (Which also, by the way, prepares them upon graduation for solo practice.)

I was truly impressed. Maybe, just maybe, not every law school aspires to be the next Yale. Maybe, just maybe, more positions will open at these law schools for adjuncts who actually practice law. Maybe, just maybe more law schools will opt out of competing for artificial ranking in U.S. News and World Report. And maybe, just maybe, as we preach to new lawyers to fashion practices centered around the client those same law schools will fashion educational programs around the needs of their clients, the students. And maybe, just maybe, the ABA will loosen up or revamp their accreditation process to mandate more skills training so the education makes more sense in the real world.

Or maybe, just maybe, I'm tired and delusional and I didn't really hear the radio ad. (No..I heard it. I really did :-)

In addition, one of Ms. Liebel's readers posted a comment to her blog post:

So true. I can tell you, having been an adjunct faculty member at a law school, that very often practical experience for the faculty is not sought after and can be perceived as a negative - those in practice are "dirtying their hands in trade" - not being true scholars and academics. This mindset needs to change and I'm glad Touro is getting on board. I have seen some other schools moving in this direction - but its a big ship that turns slowly.

It's so good to see that word is getting out about Touro Law Center's mission.

1 comment:

Susan Cartier Liebel said...

Thank you for reading my post. It's all true...I was stunned when I heard your ad and couldn't wait to get back to my computer to blog about it.

Congratulations to all at your school who created the curriculum, had the wisdom to swim against the tide and listen to what the students needed and what employers desired and are actually providing your students with the 'entire' education they require to succeed whether at a firm or on their own as solo practitioners.

My hat is off to you.