Employment Stats: Where Do They Come From and Why Are They Important?

April is stats month. Every law school around the country accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA) will be reporting their annual employment statistics from the 2015 class within the next week. Baylor is no exception, and the CDO has been working feverishly over the past few weeks to collect each piece of information the ABA requires, including supporting documentation.

Understand, we believe transparency and accurate information is important. You relied on it (as did Angela and I) when researching law schools and ultimately choosing your legal education destination, and various constituencies comb employment data to make broader judgements about the quality of each law school. Why do I tell you all this? There are two primary reasons: 1) to thank the 2015 class for their cooperation and responsiveness, and 2) to impress upon you the importance of responding to our requests for employment information when your time comes. Employment data does not just magically appear in our inboxes. Employers don’t submit their new entry-level employees to all the law schools for us to report. Rather, the responsibility is placed on law school CDOs to go out and request this data from each one of you, and for you to respond with timely, complete and accurate data. This is why I want to spend time in this piece thanking the 2015 class. You see, the large, large majority of them responded to our initial requests and allowed us to move on to the few others who were not as responsive. This made the process more efficient and freed up our time to do what we are all here for: to help current students and recent graduates find employment. Every minute we spend collecting employment data is a minute we’re not helping you; I suspect you agree this is not the best use of our time. (That said, Angela does much of this work outside normal business hours, taking as much or more from her personal time than from her typical work day, but you get the point). So thank you Class of 2015; you made this year’s process go about as smooth as it possibly could go.

Hopefully in my praise for the 2015 class, you perceived why it is so important that when your time comes to respond to our requests about your employment data, that you do so in a timely manner. This is so important, that you might recall we mentioned it in our very first meeting with you as a 1Q. We truly believe that each student here owes it to the next class to “pay it forward.” And note that, if you choose to be one of the few non-responders, it isn’t the CDO or even Baylor Law School who you will hurt (we will ultimately just report you as Unknown, which isn’t necessarily harmful or helpful). Rather it is the next class who didn’t benefit from our time because we were trying to track you down unsuccessfully. So please keep this in mind as you near graduation and begin to receive graduation surveys, employment surveys, and other similar requests. We depend on you, but more importantly, the next class is depending on you, just as you depended on the class ahead of you. And fortunately for the Class of 2016, those ahead of you absolutely did pay it forward. Great job 2015ers!

Connect with Daniel at Daniel_Hare@Baylor.edu and/or @BaylorLawDanielon Twitter. Job of the Week: Each week I highlight a job in Symplicity you might be interested in but may have missed. This week’s job is: 2016 full-time summer law clerk with Grotefeld, Hoffman, Schleiter, Gordon, Ochoa & Evinger, LLP(1L/2L, Austin) Log in to Symplicity to view this job and apply.

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