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3-20-13 UPDATE- This is my best ever performing post with over 600 hits just on 3-19-13 alone! Keep coming back!
How they rob you- False Hope of a Fresh Start
** before you read this try an image search for the Barry School of Law campus. They make sure to keep them off the internet. This should tell you everything you need to know right there**
I spent much of 2011 and 2012 attending Barry University School of Law. Obviously, I dropped out, but not before the school refused to process my withdrawal papers for about 6 weeks while they pressured me to stay in their Law Program despite the mathematic impossibility of attaining a passing GPA in my second semester.
None of the meetings and endless phone calls offered me anything but 3 options, repeatedly and always dressed up as a shiny, wonderful idea. This in spite if their knowing it was absolutely impossible to attain a passing GPA even if I scored 5 A’s out of 5 classes.
My Options? 1- stay and inevitably fail out as a full time student 2- stay and fail out as a part time student 3- drop out now and remit $25,000 of US Government loan money to them as a fine. The fact no one could overcome the laws of Math was conveniently forgotten. When i pointed this out they just tried to dress it up and beguile me.
They did not care that I had moved 1,000 miles from home on the promises that they made me. They threatened me with arrest and Federal Prosecution over and over as they harangued me to hand over every penny of the student loan check I had picked up when the new semester started. They lied and told me I would be committing a crime if I just sent a check back to Uncle Sam and cut them out of the loop.
Anatomy of a Sham
Barry School of Law is an eyesore of a campus that lacks basic amenities (ex- Air Conditioning in central Florida in mid August.)
This resulted in many classes ending early when the professor just couldn’t take it. Keep this in mind- you will have a third rate faculty member who would never be hired anywhere else cutting class short, depriving you of their (limited) insights and simply increasing your already unbelievable homework load.
Mac’s and Apple products are not compatible with their state of the 20th Century Wi-Fi. If you are eager enough to buy a brand new Mac for your studies be prepared for no Wi-Fi and having the IT people blame you, you and only you for not ‘buying a conservative computer with a conventional operating system.” No shit, the most highly regarded and best computers have no place on their campus? Yup, it’s a 1200 dollar door jam and you will be kicked out of class if you can’t keep that wifi signal up, which is mind numbingly impossible as Barry likely still uses DOS to program things. I really expected to see IT using paper punch cards that were used in pre 1980 computers.
Their buildings, constructed with convict labor, would be condemned at any school including a New York City Elementary School. Filthy, unkempt, dangerous and filled with Faculty Spies (Beware the Library Staff!). The newer buildings they advertised as being ready for fall 2011 were still not usable in February. This resulted in most classes being taught in metal prefab containers welded together to form a big, stuffy iron sweat boxes. Try to explain this problem to the faculty , like when I visited the Dean’s office and requested that they turn on the Air Conditioning, many times and you will get a well crafted cult leader-like
response-It was all in my head. 103 degrees outside and 100+ computers in a tiny classroom make for an unbelievably impossible learning environment. As I struggled to not pass out I started to realize Barry School of Law does business in the shadiest way possible and that they had sold me false hope.
I blame myself for believing them, but I blame them for perpetuating the sham that bought me there. Couple this with academic advice that was directly and unethically contrary to my best interests and I can honestly say “Fool me twice, shame on you.” Thankfully, I am a 40 yr old man returning to school and have been around the block enough to NOT be separated from my money with their insanely optimistic Cult Pep Talks (read- endless meetings with “salesman’ Deans like Amy “lyin’ ass bitch’ Lefkowitz).
If you go to Barry School of Law I have one very very serious piece of advice- master the MP3 maker on your cell phone. This is the ONLY reason I escaped with my portion of the loan money and actually got them to return the money they had already gotten. They basically tried to tell me they were entitled to ALL $14, 000 they were in possession of. Some really swift thinking and luck reversed that, but not before they made an extortionist of me. The look on the many faces of Dean Diaz, who acts like anything but a Catholic Nun, was like a jolly executioner offering you what amounts to blindfold and a cigarette, is cosmetically enhanced and unbecoming a humble servant of God, but PERFECT for a greedy lawyer.
An avaricious and dedicated liar, Dean Leticia Diaz is not as good at pouring honey in your ears as she thinks. As I sat in our 7th and final meeting I broke all 3 subpar, unemployable outside Academia, Attorneys over my knee like so many dry twigs. All the while the Big Bad Dumb Triumvirate of Greed that is their staff of Deans was cajoling me into drinking their poison Kool-Aid and asking me “Don’t you WANT to be an Attorney? Why would you pass up this chance to be like us?” Well, aside from my personal aversion to larceny and the fact they deny you basic civil rights by hiding being their Catholic “Private School” Status, there’s the fact I decided being a lawyer wasn’t for me at all. They told me this attack of common sense was just nerves and I was really lucky they had lowered their academic bar to let me in.
‘Dean Leticia’ is so accomplished a liar I actually second guessed myself, for like 10 seconds. The Dean has a grudge against reality. Is she pathological or just evil? Decide for yourself but my opinion is -BOTH!
Trampling your Civil Rights- Check Your Citizenship at the Door
Sure, they fly the American Flag over their scandalously filthy campus (there are NO dorms), but don’t make the mistake of thinking your Civil Rights don’t end at the Campus Driveway when you pull in every morning to begin a search for a spot in their laughably small paved lot, or risk getting stuck in the sugar sand field that serves as their “auxiliary” lot.
I am 100% disabled and have documentation to prove so. All this was revealed by
the documents and medical forms I filled out after I was accepted. The barriers to my having the same access as an able bodied person were easily removable, but no one would act. The Americans with Disabilities Act may as well not exist on their campus. Good luck finding this detail in their literature.
How the Game is Played
You will be invited to attend Barry; the 3rd most poorly regarded Law School in America (Tier 4!) if you have a pulse. This will seem like a great chance to undo your mistakes or a great way to ride out the recession and come out with a new career.
What did I do wrong? Not a whole lot. I was kind of desperate and needed a game change. I knew the school was a joke (but not that it was in fact malignant) but I figured if I passed the Bar Exam I would have as good a chance at a gainful career as any other lawyer. THIS IS NOT TRUE! Google stats like “Unemployed Lawyers” and you will see the hard truth- Barry will only be useful if your Dad is a partner in an existing firm. The dumbest guy in the Florida A&M program will be hired before you, even if you are top 10% of your Barry Graduating class.
In the world of Law only the top students from well regarded schools are assured to prosper. Anyone else is in for a lifelong upstream swim. Maybe this is for you, but it’s a life of 6 day weeks of 14 hour days and a student loan payment that exceeds $1,000 per month. So after taxes your first thousand dollars every month goes to pay down your (enormous) debt. Remember- all of this hinges on you actually graduating. At this point it’s worthwhile to let you know how Barry will educate you.
Barry School of Law needs you more then you need them. They will not be interested in helping you (unless you call adding 3 more hours of useless study sessions run by 3L’s ‘help’). These people have nothing to tell you except that you need to work and read at least 14 hours a day.
Some of this sounds reasonable, and your thinking- this McTeag guy is just a disaffected malcontent. If you are currently holding a Barry Acceptance letter in your hands you are definitely going to make a go of it anyway, and I wish you luck, but be VERY wary.
How do they hoodwink you? Well, like every good cult Barry School of Law knows how to stroke you and will probably convince you to ignore stuff like the rules of addition and subtraction. They will do their best to convince you they are the only ones who will tell you the truth. They will try to sell you the idea that you are going to a school whose prestige is only going to increase. That is a bald faced lie.
How worthless is Barry’s reputation? Ask anyone who attended in the first 10 years of Barry School of Law’s existence. Despite paying full price and surviving the 3 years of Hell that is any law school no one from Barry School of Law’s first 10 graduating classes were allowed to sit for the Bar exam. This is because the school lied to them, assuring people this would not be the case. The fact is they were well aware that Certification from the American Bar Association took a lot longer than they were willing to let their students know.
There are only 2 explanations for this- That the people running the school are completely incompetent overly optimistic dreamers; OR a bunch of liars as thick as thieves separating fools from their money. Well they certainly ARE liars but I’m no fool, at least not past 25,000 wasted dollars of foolishness.
Connecting the Dots-
Anyone can get a loan, not everyone can be an attorney. Barry School of Law only cares about the first part
Let me connect the dots- You are looking to go to a school where, if you’re lucky, you will graduate over $200,000 in debt to Uncle Sam. You can NOT go Bankrupt on these loans; they will follow you for life. The diploma you will receive will be more or less a bad joke, especially in Orlando where the entire legal community snickers rightly at the mention of the Sham Law School on Colonial Drive.
The Law School in Orlando is an afterthought and just to make money. Barry University’s main campus is hours and hours away in (very dangerous) Miami Shores. Barry School of Law farms out all its administration of any consequence (like addressing Civil Rights issues or medical problems) to its Miami area Campus. This includes text messages sent by the School. I received at least 5 texts during my 9 months as a student warning me of a gunman on Campus. Happily, this only applied to Miami Shores. This will not be the first thing to occur to you though, because crime in the area of Barry School of Law is rampant and violent. That’s right, you may find the fact everyone who can carry a gun does and you’re surrounded by armed George Zimmerman’s in waiting reassuring, especially when you’re always getting “Gun man On Campus” texts, but violent crime in Orlando is out of control. Its America’s 2nd most violent city as of 2010, beating out Camden New Jersey and falling just short of the #1 most violent city, beautiful Flint, Michigan. Orlando also boasts America largest population of abandoned, homeless children. This will depress the shit out of you like nothing else, trust me.
What’s Best For You?
Only YOU know. All I can do is honestly warn you that if no one but Barry wants you it’s probably a doomed course of action. Sure, some ships will make it through a typhoon, even if only by sheer luck, but will you be on that ship? More important, will Barry still be an accredited Law School when you graduate? It’s an open question. The first 10 years of Graduates paid 100k to be $12 an hour paralegals OR go a half million in the hole and go through 3 years of law school again.
Look into your heart and ASK yourself- will I bet 20 years of making loan payments and over 100k in debt on a school that is doing what no other school would do- Accept you as a student? Barry has extremely low admission standards. This works out great because the washout rate makes the school seem prestigious. Nothing could be further from the truth. It’s likely you are being lied to when they exaggerate the success level of their marginally qualified students. If you are going to an early start program at Barry, which is packaged as anything BUT the $5,000 cash grab it is, your not lucky to get in, you are more likely being played. Only you know if you can “play the players” and survive 3 years of classes that prepare you only to pass the bar, not to be successful thereafter.
Barry School of Law is a leaky tub in uncharted waters. It could fold tomorrow. They were so desperate to steal my 14k in Government loan money it betrayed their situation- That Barry is 397 out of 400 rated, accredited law schools and its ability to stay open is in serious doubt. They could easily mismanage themselves into bankruptcy, or more likely, be sued successfully for violating peoples civil rights.
Your Diploma will not be worth the paper it’s printed on and your chances of being a lifelong wage slave in a non legal job are as good as 50-50
The Final Insult- You will have Just Hours to Decide your Fate-
Your grades will conveniently be quite late. In my case i had 24 hours to make a life changing decision involving 10′s of thousands of dollars. I was 2 weeks into second semester before all my grades were available. This is a brilliant ploy as desperate, uninformed people are especially vulnerable to suggestion and trust me, you will be heavily pressured to make your decision in a vacuum of facts. DON’T TRUST THESE PEOPLE WITH YOUR MONEY OR FUTURE!
Need More Proof? Here’s another (very unfavorable) view of Barry from “The Bitter Lawyers Kill List”. Barry is justifiably called out as a sham
And for Good measure- another blogger who came up (with thousands of others) when I googled “Barry Law School Sham”