Viewers of shows like “How to Get Away with Murder” would be forgiven if they walked away from an episode thinking that all law schools were extremely cut-throat and ambitious to a fault.
But a new survey by Kaplan Test Prep reveals that the next generation of lawyers are looking for a more thoughtful and nurturing experience — which could lead to a culture clash between students and schools in the future.
The survey found that more than three out of four future applicants say that they want law school to have a collaborative culture where students are working with each other, not against each other. Pre-law majors are also rejecting the formal, buttoned-up culture of many schools, saying they prefer to attend classes in a more casual environment.
Millennial would-be lawyers also want their classes to be interdisciplinary, and hesitate to narrow their focus too much. Luckily for them, more than 80 percent of schools say that won’t be a problem.
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So will law schools start paying attention to these new trends? Experts say it’s in their interest to do so. “While entry into law school remains competitive, it’s also clear that law schools are sometimes fighting over the best students because there are far fewer applicants now than there were a decade ago,” notes Jeff Thomas, Kaplan’s director of pre-law programs, in a statement.
Follow Lakshmi Gandhi on Twitter @LakshmiGandhi.