There have been murmurs for some time now, but the discussion about giving law students the option to forgo a third year has been picking up steam. This op-ed piece in the New York Times makes a strong case for the option and it’s one with which I largely agree.
The most obvious reason to favor the optional third year of law school is the reduction of debt. With the American legal job market contracting through automation and outsourcing, the amount of debt with which law school graduates are saddled is becoming ever more onerous. Reducing that debt by a third would no doubt ease the squeeze a bit. Law school would become a more attractive post-graduate option, thus enlarging the potential pool of lawyers and arguably enriching the profession through a reduction in exclusivity.