Law School News Round Up

  • In her Yale Law School Admissions Blog, Dean Asha Rangappa highlights YLS’s incomparable success when it comes to legal academia. While Rangappa points out that the “vast majority” of Yale law grads do practice law, YLS produces more law professors on leading law faculties than any other school in the countryand by a huge margin. Plus, as Rangappa notes, YLS offers every student “special perks” that can prepare them for a teaching career, from close interactions with faculty to access to the Law Teaching Series.
  • Richmond University School of Law has appointed Wendy Collins Perdue as its new dean, the Blog of Legal Times reports. Perdue has served as Associate Dean of Georgetown University Law Center since 1998, and is an expert in civil procedure and conflict of laws. Perdue appreciates Richmond’s “longstanding emphasis on practical skills, but wants to do even more to ensure it produces graduates who are strong leaders and can collaborate with others. 
  • When is the best time to take the LSAT? Most Strongly Supported breaks down the options. Either June or October seem to be your best bets, since these earlier dates will allow you to apply to law school early and take full advantage of rolling admissions. With this logic, perhaps June is best, since you’re then giving yourself leeway to retake the test in October in case something goes wrong. However, some will not have enough preparation time to take the test in June, and will find October to be more feasible. And this, really, is the most important factor, since “the best date is the date that allows you to be most prepared.”
  • As reported by The National Law Journal, the University of California, Berkeley School of Law has begun an institute expanding on the university’s already existing studies of Jewish and Israeli Law, financed by The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation. Two programs will take place at the institute: the Jewish Law program and the Israeli Law, Economy and Society program. Plus, “in addition to supporting research and new programming, the institute is expected to offer courses in Israeli history and constitutional law and host a campus-wide conference on Israel as a high-tech nation.”
  • Whether acting from moral or economic motivations, two New York law schools are reducing their class sizes for next year, New York Lawyer reports. Albany Law School will reduce their incoming class from 250 to 240 students, while Touro Law Center will admit 270 students, down from 280 students in 2010. Touro plans to continue this 10-student reduction for 2012 and 2013, as well. While most law schools have had a decrease in applications this year, they still “remain at historically high levels,” and most are maintaining or even increasing class sizes.
  • The University of Chicago Law School is revamping its Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP), making it the most generous program of its kind,” according to the school’s Web site. The program will now allow any grad who stays in public interest for ten years to attend law school for free. The school has also increased the salary cap to $80,000, based on an actual drawn salary and not a calculated income, which is used by many other schools. With this generous salary cap and a new inclusion of grads with judicial clerkships, a much larger number of students can now take advantage of the LRAP.

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U.S. News’ Best Law Schools 2012, Ranked Two Ways

 

U.S. News released its law school rankings today, with few surprises among the top 20. Yale Law School took its place at the top of the list (where it has been for the last two decades) and was followed by the rest of the top 5 regulars—Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, and Chicago.

There is one new school on the T14 (top 14) horizon this year—the University of Texas’ Austin School of Law tied for 14th place alongside the Georgetown Law Center. Significant jumpers in the top 50 this year include the University of Maryland School of Law which jumped from 48th to 42nd and the University of California’s Davis School of Law which leapt from 28th to 23rd.

Here are the top 14 law schools of 2012:

1. Yale University

2. Harvard University

3. Stanford University

4. Columbia University

5. University of Chicago

6. New York University

7. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

7. University of Pennsylvania

9. University of California, Berkeley

11. Duke University

12. Northwestern University

13. Cornell University

14. Georgetown University

14. University of Texas, Austin

You’ll see below that U.S. News added a new perspective to the law school rankings. This year, in addition to the regular rankings (above), new rankings based on a five-point “average reputation” scale judged by recruiters at the top law firms (as determined by the 2010 Best Law Firms rankings) were added. Please see the U.S. News‘ article, “Law School Rankings Methodology,” for more details on how the law school rankings were determined.

2012 Best Law Schools Ranked by Recruiters (average reputation score, 5.0=highest, in parentheses)

1. Harvard University (4.9)

2. Stanford University (4.8)

2. Yale University (4.8)

4. Columbia University (4.7)

4. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (4.7)

6. New York University (4.6)

6. University of Virginia (4.6)

8. Cornell University (4.5)

8. Duke University (4.5)

8. Northwestern University (4.5)

8. UC Berkeley (4.5)

8. University of Chicago (4.5)

13. Georgetown University (4.4)

13. University of Pennsylvania (4.4)

Learn the latest in law school admissions news and access insightful advice and tips on the law school application process. Subscribe to our blog today and receive these critical updates right to your inbox or RSS reader.

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Best Law Schools to Help You Land that Biglaw Job

In its annual Go-To Law Schools report, The National Law Journal has ranked law schools according to the percentage of their graduates who went on to work in Biglaw. The University of Chicago Law School tops the list, with over 58% of its grads snagging jobs at NLJ 250 law firms. Following Chicago are Cornell, Columbia, Penn, and Harvard in the top five.

The NLJ also lists “firm favorites”—schools that specific firms turned to the most when choosing their first-years. You can check out both lists here.

While the individual numbers may seem encouraging, the overall picture is a little less sunny. While in 2009, the top 50 schools sent 30.3% of their grads to NLJ 250 firms, in 2009 they only sent 27.3%. Out of the 47 schools that were on the list both years, 38 had fewer 2010 grads going on to Biglaw jobs. Some schools did see a rise in numbers, such as Cornell, Harvard, and Penn. However, percentages from Virginia, Northwestern, and NYU all declined in 2010.

Although the NLJ tried to obtain data on judicial clerkships, not all schools provided this information, and this omission can thereby affect the schools’ placement on the list, as some schools send large numbers of its grads on to clerkships rather than Biglaw jobs. As David Lat expounds in Above the Law, “the schools that top this list are often those that land in the “sweet spot” between (1) having enough juice to get their grads Biglaw jobs and (2) not having too many grads go off and clerk. In other words, think of it as a list of law schools that excel at sending their graduates straight into Biglaw, without detour.” 

Additionally, the NLJ has considered tuition rates in order to determine the “best buy Go-To law schools.” The University of Chicago Law School and Howard University School of Law “had the highest percentage of graduates taking first-year associate jobs at NLJ 250 law firms for the lowest tuition price.” Conversely, Yeshiva University Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law had the highest tuition compared to its percentage of grads going on to NLJ 250 firms. Other relatively pricy schools were Washington and Lee and the University of Texas, while Boston College and College of William and Mary “fared well in a cost-benefit analysis.”

Finally, a considerably useful ranking system. As Above the Law’s Elie Mystal notes, “These are the kinds of questions that people should be asking when they choose a law school, not just mindlessly going through the U.S. News rankings and matriculating at the best school they got into.” 

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New Law School Rankings Take Price into Account

While many turn to the U.S. News rankings when determining the value of a law school, Malcom Gladwell points out at least one significant omission in U.S. News’s calculationsaffordability, TaxProf Blog reports. According to Gladwell, “[G]iven that the rising cost of college has become a significant social problem in the United States in recent years, you can make a strong case that a school ought to be rewarded for being affordable.” Gladwell thus came up with his own ranking system based on three factors: 40% value for the dollar, 40% LSAT scores, and 20% faculty publishing.

Below are his top ten law schools:

  1. Chicago
  2. BYU
  3. Harvard
  4. Yale
  5. Texas
  6. Virginia
  7. Colorado
  8. Alabama
  9. Stanford
  10. Penn

With BYU at #2 and NYU at #33, something seems amiss here. While affordability should be a contributing factor, perhaps Gladwell’s breakdown omitted some crucial elements as well. All rankings should be taken with a grain of salt. 

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A Few of the Mostest at Accepted.com

This is the time of year to look back at the most, best, (worst), etc. I am going to stick to the positive.

Top Ten Most Visited Accepted Admissions Almanac Posts of 2010:

In a nutshell, rankings and application tip posts rule. (I am only listing the current tip post when last year’s tip post also made the list):

  1. Financial Times Global 2010 MBA Rankings
  2. Forbes ROI MBA Rankings for 2010
  3. Harvard HBS 2011 MBA Application Questions, Deadlines, Tips
  4. INSEAD 2011 MBA Application Questions, Deadlines, Tips
  5. NYU Stern 2011 MBA Application Questions, Tips, Deadlines
  6. Common Application Essay Tips
  7. Columbia 2011 MBA Application Questions, Deadlines, Tips
  8. 2010 MBA Rankings Released by BusinessWeek
  9. Kellogg 2011 MBA Application Questions, Deadlines, Tips
  10. London Business School 2011 MBA Application Questions, Deadlines, Tips

Three Most Commented Accepted Admissions Almanac Posts of 2010

  1. Harvard HBS 2010 MBA Application Questions, Deadlines, Tips (269)
  2. INSEAD 2010 MBA Application Questions, Deadlines, Tips (246)
  3. INSEAD 2011 MBA Application Questions, Deadlines, Tips (60)

Keep ‘em coming! (Please post your questions about this year’s applications on this year’s tips.)

Five Most Popular Articles on Accepted.com of 2010:

  1. Go for the Goals in your Statement of Purpose
  2. Tips for Writing Letters of Recommendation for Medical School
  3. 4 Must-Haves in Residency Personal Statements
  4. MBA Admissions: Low GMAT or GPA 
  5. Sample MBA Interview Questions

Most Popular Resources of 2010:

Our Absolute, Best, Most Superlative Asset: YOU, our readers, followers, fans, subscribers, and most of all, our clients.

On behalf of Accepted’s staff, this post is where I

Thank you, all of you Acceptees, for making 2010 our best year ever!

By Linda Abraham, President and Founder of Accepted.com.

Law School News Round Up

  • Carlyle Group L.P. co-founder David Rubenstein has donated $10 million to the University of Chicago Law School, New York Lawyer reports. The largest scholarship initiative in the law school’s history, the donation will subsidize 20 full-ride scholarships in each of the next three years. Rubenstein attended the law school on a full-tuition scholarship and graduated in 1973. 
  • Texas Tech and Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center are now offering a joint J.D./M.D. degree. The program is geared to those interested in the areas of health law, healthcare policy, bioterrorism, forensics or biomedical compliance. The six-year program is the first of its kind offered at one institution.
  • Will Meyerhofer, in his blog The People’s Therapist, urges those considering law school to take a step back. While grad school may be the easy thing to do, it’s worth taking some time to figure out what you really want. He suggests gaining experience in the real world first, perhaps through a low-paid starting position in the industry of your choice. Exploring a career before getting a degree can relieve potential frustration and debt, and though not the quickest route, can ultimately lead to happiness and success. 
  • Think long and hard before asking someone to write you a letter of recommendation. The Wall Street Journal law blog cites a new study by Kaplan, which discovered that 87% of law school admissions officers have received a negative letter of recommendation about an applicant. Plus, 15% consider it the biggest application killer. Additionally, when assessing the most important factor in admissions, 64% choose the LSAT score, with 23% selecting the GPA. 

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New U.S. News Rankings Show that Little has Changed: Top Programs Remain Top Programs

The 2011 U.S. News & World Report graduate school rankings were released just moments ago, and we at Accepted.com have been standing by to report the news as it’s released.

We’ll give you the top ten b-schools, law schools, and med schools. Follow the links for the full rankings.

Top 10 Business Schools

1.  Harvard University

1.  Stanford University

3.  MIT (Sloan)

4.  Northwestern University (Kellogg)

5.  Chicago (Booth)

5.  University of Pennsylvania (Wharton)

7.  Dartmouth College (Tuck)

7.  University of California—Berkeley (Haas)

9.  Columbia University

9.  New York University (Stern)

 

Top 10 Law Schools

1.  Yale University

2.  Harvard University

3.  Stanford University

4.  Columbia University

5.  University of Chicago

6.  New York University

7.  University of California—Berkeley

7.  University of Pennsylvania

9.  University of Michigan—Ann Arbor

10.  University of Virginia

 

Top 10 Medical Schools (Research)

1.  Harvard University

2.  University of Pennsylvania

3.  Johns Hopkins University

4.  University of California—San Francisco

4.  Washington University in St. Louis

6.  Duke University

6.  University of Michigan—Ann Arbor

6.  University of Washington

6.  Yale University

10.  Columbia University

 

Top 10 Medical Schools (Primary Care)

1.  University of Washington

2.  University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill

3.  Oregon Health and Science University

4.  University of Vermont

5.  University of California—San Francisco

5.  University of Colorado—Denver

7.  Michigan State University

7.  University of Pennsylvania

9.  University of Massachusetts—Worcester

10.  University of Iowa (Carver)

 

For more information about how to read, understand, and value school rankings, download The Rankings: An Accepted.com special report.

 

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