According to this law.com article, applications to law schools by women in the US are down. There are plenty of other options for women out there and I can certainly understand how the billable hours requirement is a strike again this profession.
Here is a quick excerpt:
Cathy Fleming, a partner at Nixon Peabody and past president of the National Association for Women Lawyers, points to a combination of factors contributing to the decrease. A perception among young women that they have a wider array of career opportunities is one reason, but a change in work ethic is also at play, she said. And law firms, with their reputation for punishing work hours, may have a tougher sell to college graduates.
“They’ve grown up with parents that work these crazy hours. They don’t want to do it,” she said.
What our profession has to do is to publicize the good jobs. The work in the public sector, small firms and the option for women to become solo attorneys come to mind.