WEST CHESTER, Pa., May 16, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- After nearly a year in development, including a nine-month pilot program, AccessLex Institute is proud to announce the release of MAX by AccessLex, a first-of-its-kind financial education program designed exclusively for law students and available free of charge to ABA-approved law schools. Utilizing a multi-faceted approach, MAX is built to drive the knowledge gain and behavior change essential to students' making sound financial decisions while in school – and in life.
During the pilot phase, more than 5,000 students and administrators at over 40 law schools contributed to focus groups and surveys, generously offering their insights on everything from financial acumen and current financial behaviors to what they wanted – and needed – in a personal finance program. The student responses were especially revealing. For example, 70% said they feel stressed about personal finances, and 85% give themselves a B-minus or lower grade on their personal finance knowledge. Further, 98% of student respondents saw benefit in a personal finance program and would be thankful to have their institution provide one for them.
"The magnitude of the education debt assumed by law students can far exceed their financial knowledge and experience – but debt management is far from the whole story," said Christopher P. Chapman, President and Chief Executive Officer at AccessLex Institute. "MAX will offer a broad foundation in personal finance to students by providing ongoing guidance in an organized and comprehensive way, with learning paths that are mindful of the many demands on their time. At AccessLex Institute, our goal is to positively influence legal education and help law students succeed, and creating MAX is a major opportunity to do just that."
MAX combines in-person workshops, online and virtual programming and one-on-one counseling to provide a framework for making informed financial decisions. And, in the current environment, when complaints about student loan servicers jumped more than 300% in the first three months of this year compared with the same period a year ago, and the nation's largest student loan servicer is on record as saying there is no expectation that they will act in the interest of the consumer, a program that empowers students to take control of their own financial futures has never been more needed.
"Law students are driven individuals," added Cynthia Cassity, Vice President – Education and Strategic Engagement at AccessLex Institute. "They are smart, strategic thinkers who are willing to work hard. But that doesn't mean they all understand finance. Involving them in the pilot program was a great way to give them a voice in the development process and to design the curriculum in a way that leverages the strengths and skillsets that legal education attracts and fosters. We couldn't be more excited by the impact MAX will have. And in the spirit of our nonprofit mission, we are thrilled to be able to offer it at no cost to our Member law schools and their students."
MAX by AccessLex is available to first-year law students for the upcoming 2017-2018 academic year. MAX for second- and third-year law students is currently in development and will launch in Fall 2018 and Fall 2019, respectively.
About AccessLex Institute:
AccessLex Institute is a nonprofit organization committed to helping talented, purpose-driven students find their path from aspiring lawyer to fulfilled professional. In partnership with its nearly 200 Member law schools, improving access and positively influencing legal education have been at the heart of the Company's mission since 1983. AccessLex Institute has offices in West Chester, PA., and Washington, D.C., with a team of accredited financial education counselors based throughout the United States. Learn more at AccessLex.org.