In the category of “wow didn’t expect that”: Applications to law school rebounded in the last year.
And then again: Hmm, of course! Shoulda expected that!
Everything happens due to the political environment and the economy.
The economy is the most obvious and immediate driver in trends in MBA admissions.
The political environment is the driver for law school.
Things flipped in the not-so-distant past; there had been an ominous trend with a seeming ever-downward spiral of interest in law school over about five years now.
These things are cyclical. Law school and bschool are what are called substitute goods – when someone buys one, they won’t buy the other. If you sell electric skateboards, then you’re keeping your eye on the market for electric bicycles. They’re different buyers but there’s a lot of overlap.
Same deal here. An increase in one market (law school) means that even perhaps not a noteable one, there will be a decrease in another (bschool). And vice versa.
There have been other factors that more directly affect the MBA economy that matter much less for the law school environment, such as the real issues with perception of our country on a world stage. That just means that more internationals are flocking to places like Canada and the UK for their MBAs.
We mention this today not just to talk about “Oh look trends” but also as an invitation.
You really want to change the world and make a difference and all that jazz?
Well, keep your mind open. Is the MBA really the best way to do that?
There’s a fetish around “doing good through business” which, okay sure, of course, companies bring innovation that helps us all.
But what problems do you REALLY want to solve?
Are those problems best tackled through the private sector?
Or are there real changes you aspire to, that need to be done at the infrastructure level, through governance and policy and how the marketplace is enforced? Things like equal pay or gender issues. Things like the climate. BIG things.
So many applicants say they want to have an impact so they aspire to become a product manager at Facebook and we’re like 😕
Lots of opportunities out there. The one thing that’s static is how quickly the world is changing.
Does a two-year full-time MBA even make sense?
Things to think about.
Law school. Bschool. A policy degree.
Education is totally important and we’re thrilled you have the mindset of improving yourself and learning and (hopefully) making a contribution. Doing something with this life.
But also, don’t get blinders on. THE WORLD IS CHANGING. What skills do you need – what drives you – where will you do your best work?
You probably don’t know yet, which is why the MBA seems so appealing. It’s imminently flexible. It (theoretically) opens doors. Going to a good school sets you up with resources and new opportunities that you did not have before.
As radical thinker and overall smart guy who pisses off the establishment Nassim Nicholas Taleb says:
The only thing you can learn from a business school professor is how to become a business school professor.
— Nassim Nicholas Taleb (@nntaleb) December 18, 2017
So our conclusion today:
If you’re looking for skills then a graduate program that teaches concrete things is what you want.
If you’re looking for prestige then try for one of those famous-name bschools.
If you’re looking for really changing how the world works through the contributions to the actual system itself then law school or some other destination may actually do more for you than the MBA.
“Aw jeepers EssaySnark you sure seem jaded.”
Yup. But motivated and excited as well! We know there are great things happening and are excited for where the future is going. Which part of it will you be making a dent in?