Those Who Can, Teach and Know the Law
Legal employment in academia remains steady
If your background is in education, you know that the fields of education and law are closely intertwined.
Schools and colleges enter into contracts, face legal challenges, and engage in real estate transactions. They are bound by public-information laws, special education laws and statutory laws.
That’s why Dr. LD, Concord EJD 2006, founder of a charter school in Florida, decided to return to school several years ago to pursue a law degree at Concord. His goal: to use his legal knowledge to make the school the best it could be for the more than 300 students who attend.
"As with many fields, education doesn't exist in a vacuum," says the veteran teacher and principal. "A legal education offers tremendous advantages in the daily operations of a school."
This Concord grad says his legal training has served him well in almost every aspect of school administration. That includes everything from understanding the fine points of the Individuals with Disabilities Act, to knowing how to prepare a contract to get the best deal when we rent out our facilities, to resolving personnel disputes."
Educating the next generation
A particular point of pride: He has used his newfound expertise to create the schools new legal studies program, which prepares students for careers in fields such as law enforcement, corrections, and pre-law school programs.
"It’s a formidable program now in its second year," he says. "Students are well-equipped to enter a career or to continue their legal studies in college. Having a law degree of my own was invaluable to me in launching it."
He is not alone in choosing a dual education and law career. According to Jobs for JDs, a report published by NALP, The Association for Legal Professionals, the academic employment sector for law school graduates has remained steady for some 25 years.
A plus for part-timers
Moreover, the report indicates that the academic arena offers a particular advantage for law school graduates: It has the highest number of opportunities for part-time positions of any employment sector. In fact, part-time positions accounted for one-quarter of academic jobs taken by law school graduates in 2006.