(thanks to markpeterdavis.com)The full organizational takeover of the professions is close to hand. Two stories in the Guardian give it to us straight.
The College of Law and BPP, both private legal training companies, have introduced 2 year law degrees with an emphasis on preparation for practice rather than being educated in the law. According to this story one student has already turned down an offer to study law at Oxford to do one of these.
The degrees will cost £9000 a year, cheap by US standards, but expensive by those of the UK. Trouble is as they are companies, students aren't eligible for subsidised loans. And because the work will be intensive, the schools recommend that their students don't do any part-time work.
In the second story KPMG has sponsored a BSc degree in accounting at Durham University. The Guardian says:
The KPMG-Durham University accountancy BSc will host 75 students – selected on the basis of having achieved at least an A and two Bs at A level – spend their undergraduate days in a deeply unromantic blur of accountancy lectures and part-time work for the firm. In return, KPMG will cover tuition fees, pay students a salary during the course and give them a job. The firm says such schemes could come to account for the majority of its trainee intake.As is suggested in the article, law firms will surely join in the melee so as not to lose the best candidates to the accounting/consulting firms, or banks perhaps.
A race has started. For in the article there is the telling statement:
Supermarkets Morrisons and Tesco, and Harrods, have launched similar schemes.It does seem as though Tesco Law will become a reality. Who will get them first?
I mention this because at Law Without Walls one of the discussions was about the future of legal education and what it would signify in the future. Hazel Genn, dean of UCL law faculty, said she was concerned whether legal education as a liberal arts degree was endangered.
I fear it is. I've always thought that if we aren't careful the academy will join in this race to the bottom and abdicate its educative function in exchange for training.
I hope not. Let's hope we, or too many others, don't become like the hairy frog fish....