You can become a Supreme Court Justice without having taken Bankruptcy in law school. But it helps to have gone to Yale. Justice Samuel A. Alito gave the keynote address to at the American Bankruptcy Institute's Spring Meeting in D.C. last Monday. He conceded that he never took a course in bankruptcy as a law student but explained that bankruptcy courses were not offered at Yale. (Alito graduated from Yale Law in 1975).
Not to worry though. Justice Alito explained that federal judges are generalists and learn on the job. "We are not experts in all statutes we are called upon to interpret," he noted. But, "we can learn how to read a statutory provision." "You can teach yourself what you need to know" he said. Indeed, "formal legal education today is a bit overvalued."