No job? Just sue your school

August 10, 2009
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Can’t find a job? Sue your school! That’s what one graduate in New York City has decided to do. She thinks it’s her school’s fault she can’t find a job because its office of career advancement hasn’t provided her with leads and the career advice it promised.

The Monroe College IT graduate wants her $70,000 in tuition back. The college claims it helps graduates in their careers and argues the lawsuit is without merit.

When I first heard this story and before I knew what her degree was in, I thought this story had to be about a law student. But perhaps a law student would know this kind of action may end up being deemed frivolous or quickly tossed out.

It took me more than 6-months to find a full-time job after graduating, and it wasn’t even in my major. When my bank account was running low and my student loans were coming due, it would have been nice to have the university reimburse me for the money I paid. After all, I went there to become skilled in a specific field with the goal of working in said field. It took me longer than I thought it would to score a full-time journalism job.

But I want to know how a graduate who hasn’t found “gainful employment” since graduating has the money to hire an attorney. If she’s not working, who’s paying the attorney? I doubt an attorney would take on this case pro bono, but maybe one has. Perhaps the grad is proceeding pro se in order to save money.

I know you can’t be guaranteed a job after graduating because jobs are dependent on so many factors (qualifications, economy, competition, etc.). It’s not the school’s fault she can’t find a job. Perhaps it could be more helpful in trying to find leads, but it’s up to each individual to score employment. For those of us who struggled for months or years to find a job in our field, wouldn’t it be great if you could sue your school and get back that tuition if you couldn’t find a job in your major within a certain time period?

I know that would in essence give some a free education and reward them for being jobless, while graduates who found jobs would still have to pay for their education. But when you’re broke, sitting at home all day (possibly at your parents’ house), or working at the same job you did in high school, getting back your tuition, even through a lawsuit, would be a nice dream, wouldn’t it?
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  2. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  3. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  4. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  5. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

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