Published On: Tue, Oct 18th, 2016

Why Is There an Increase in the Number of Law Students in the US?

When the New York Times published an article stating that there were too many law students in the United States back in 2015, a lot of experts and law practitioners were skeptical. While the growth of legal jobs was declining at that time, many believed that law professionals would continue to help the economy expand.

This year, we’re seeing yet another increase in the number of law students across the country. New distance learning programs allow students to pursue an online MSL degree while working a full-time job at reputable companies. If the demand for law professionals was declining, why is there an increase in the number of law students in the US?

A Growing Field

One of the reasons why there are more students studying law in various universities is because of the increasing demand for law professionals in other fields, including business and politics. A law degree can open doors to a wide range of career options and possible paths, all of which are attracting the brightest and best from around the country to the major.

“A law degree will help professionals who are not lawyers master the legal aspects of their work,” according to Tony Perriello, J.D., the director of Champlain College’s Master of Science in Law program.

More companies are hiring graduates and those with a master’s degree in law to help fill various positions too, from corporate secretaries to key positions in various departments. The negotiation and interpretation skills learned through law programs are becoming invaluable to businesses.

Photo/Nodar Kherkheulidze via wikimedia commons

Photo/Nodar Kherkheulidze via wikimedia commons

More Firms Are Hiring

Despite what many predicted, recent research showed that top law firms across the country are actually hiring more graduates. The market is expanding at a steady rate and the economy is growing, which means demand for various services – including legal services – is also rising at a steady rate.

Anyone from local, smaller law firms that mostly deal with small businesses and individual clients to the top 100 law firms in the country are actively seeking – and approaching – law students with accolades to join their firms. The hiring process has also been cut short, mainly due to the increasing demand. Many graduates and those who are pursuing an online MSL degree are able to secure a job even before they complete their courses.

Law Degrees for Entrepreneurs

The last factor that has caused the increase in law students is the increasing number of entrepreneurs taking law programs to help understand the regulations surrounding their businesses. It is interesting to note that legal skills are among the best skills to have as a business owner, because they allow you to negotiate better deals and stay within the boundaries of the law.

Thanks to online programs and courses, there are more business owners – and future entrepreneurs – taking the time to pursue a master’s degree in law than ever. Combined, these factors are causing a rise in law students across the US. It will be interesting to see today’s students being absorbed by the market in a couple of years’ time.

Author: Joao Pedro

On the DISPATCH: Headlines  Local  Opinion

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