In a shocking bit of news, the Wall Street Journal Law Blog has reported that the University of Alabama Law School is giving away free iTunes downloads to select prospective applicants via an email campaign.
In addition to providing $20 in free downloads, the school is also waiving the application fee. This means that Alabama is paying people to apply to law school! Surely, this is some sort of sign that the end times are coming soon.
Possibly even more perplexing is the WSJ’s confusion with regard to Alabama’s motives. This appears to be a blatant attempt to drive raw application numbers. After all, more applications means a lower acceptance rate (presuming yield rates remain constant), which means more prestige, and a possible ascension in the rankings.
This is the kind of thing that schools could have gotten away with pretty easily about 10 years ago, but not anymore. It seems that every relevant legal blog these days has readers who will forward along any correspondence that might be newsworthy, meaning that letters from law school deans (see: Stanford’s changes to its grading system) and email campaigns from admissions offices will more than likely show up on the web within about 24 hours.
I have a feeling Alabama is rethinking this one.