Houston Matters

Is Increasing Diversity Good Policy, or a Survival Strategy for Law Schools?

This time last year, UH Law School Dean Leonard Baynes channeled the lingo of the oil and gas industry when he said he planned “to launch a pipeline to create more opportunities for minorities, economically challenged and other underserved students to attend law school.” The University of Houston is not alone in this thinking. But […]

This time last year, UH Law School Dean Leonard Baynes channeled the lingo of the oil and gas industry when he said he planned “to launch a pipeline to create more opportunities for minorities, economically challenged and other underserved students to attend law school.”

The University of Houston is not alone in this thinking. But recent enthusiasm among law schools towards minority recruitment comes as first-year law school enrollment is lower than it’s been in decades, according to American Bar Association data. What’s behind the decline? And is this focus on minority students being made in the interest of diversity, or simply to fill seats in first year law school classrooms?

We talk it over with UH Law Center Dean Leonard Baynes, and Aaron Taylor, an Assistant Professor of Law at Saint Louis University School of Law, who has been examining enrollment trends and minority recruitment efforts at law schools nationwide.

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