The Wall Street Journal published an article today on law schools gaming the system to improve their U.S. News and World Report rankings. It focuses in part on the rise of the University of Baltimore School of Law, which has risen dramatically in many ways under new dean Phillip Closius, including the U.S. News and World Report rankings.
I think everyone has been “gaming the system” to some degree except for the University of Baltimore Law School and a few other schools. Now, UB is playing along just like everyone else. As Dean Closius points out, some of the things that the U.S. News and World Report seeks – like tracking employment better after graduation – help the students and alumni.
The University of Baltimore Law School has been spinning its wheels for years watching other law schools pass it on the food chain. Now Dean Closius steps in and not only talks about change, but is actually making quality changes people can see. (Boy, I hope to be thinking the same thing about President Obama in a few years.) He is intent on seeing the University of Baltimore become a real power, not just in Baltimore, but regionally and nationally. The more amazing thing is that people associated with the law school now believe things are possible that they would not have imagined even three years ago.
The Wall Street Journal interviewed me for this story. I had originally thought the angle of the story was going to be the rise of the University of Baltimore Law School. Obviously, that would have been the perfect spin for the school. But in spite of the angle of the article – gaming the rankings – I think the article came out well for the University of Baltimore.