Dr. Sanchagrin Secures Course Release to Pursue Research and Grant

New assistant professor, Dr. Ken Sanchagrin, was awarded a one-course reduction through the Office of Research Pilot Faculty Reassigned Time program for the Spring of 2015, for the purpose of pursuing an external grant from the Law School Admissions Council. The project he plans to pursue concerns the effects that personal network connections have during the job search process. It is often assumed that when searching for employment, few pieces of advice are truer than the old maxim, “it’s not what you know, but who you know.” Research examining the use of job contacts, however, generally finds that this “who you know” cliché oversimplifies the relationship that exists between network connections and labor market success. The most serious critique of this idea, in fact, is that researcher have been unable to account for the possibility that the purported positive effects of job contacts during the job search process may actually reflect social homophily, or the fact that individuals select friends, job contacts, and into social groups based on similarities. This could mean, importantly, that our “who you know” cliché may actually reflect the fact that successful individuals and their contacts both possess the individual qualities, skills, and knowledge necessary to achieve their goals, and not because of any help or assistance flowing between them. Ken’s research will seek to bring further clarity regarding the utility of job contacts by soliciting funds for the collection of social network data from cohorts of law students over several years. It is hoped that this data will shed light on the true role that network connections play on the job market as these young attorneys transition out of law school and into their roles as professionals.

Published: Jan 9, 2015 12:29pm