Law School News Round Up

  • It seems that your LSAT score may still be of significance even once you’re attending law school. As Above the Law reports, law firm K&L Gates requests an applicant’s LSAT score along with the rest of the job application. Perhaps underlying this move is the constant grade reform going on at law schools. As Elie Mystal writes, it seems like law schools having been going out of their way to make their grading systems completely unintelligible.” While it’s still important for an employer to base decisions on interviews, recommendations, etc., the need for a somewhat objective factor is crucial as well, and that seems to be where the LSAT comes in.
  • Law firm Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy has set up a five-year training program at Harvard Law School for its mid-level associates, the WSJ law blog reports. Every associate, inside and outside the U.S., will participate from the end of their third year through their seventh year. The program will train the associates in business issues as well as legal issues, such as finance, negotiation, economics, and accounting.
  • Federal Judge Deanell Reece Tacha will be the new Dean of Pepperdine University School of Law starting in June, as reported by Above the Law. Tacha has served on the Tenth Circuit for over 25 years and served as Chief Judge from 2001 through 2007. She also held various positions in the faculty and administration of the University of Kansas School of Law, including Associate Dean. Judge Tacha will replace former Dean and D.C. Circuit Judge Kenneth Starr, who now serves as President of Baylor University.
  • UCLA Today recently highlighted its Street Law Program, a law clinic in which third-year law students teach law to high school students. The law students not only become role models to the teenagers, but the program benefits them as teachers as well, since “by the end of the semester, the law students have hands-on experience working with unfamiliar communities and explaining complex legal rules to people who aren’t lawyers—vital skills for dealing with future clients.”
  • Loyola University Chicago School of Law will offer an LL.M. degree in the rule of law in Rome next fall through a program called Prolaw, as reported by New York Lawyer. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will help with funding for the program, which will train mostly non-U.S. attorneys “to address legal and judicial matters in developing countries.” Expected enrollment will be from 15 to 20 students in the first year, eventually expanding to 30 students over time.
  • According to Above the Law, Stanford Law School is significantly raising its tuition just because it can. While the rest of the university will undergo a 3.5% tuition hike for the next academic year, Stanford Law is raising its tuition by 5.75%. The school isn’t basing this decision on the value of a law degree, but instead is taking into account how much its competitors are charging. And as the school is well aware, “Stanford can still promise high-paying jobs and prestigious clerkships to just about every graduate who wants one. And other schools that can’t say those things are charging more money. So Stanford can charge more, because the business of legal education is business.” 

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Law School News Round Up

  • The University of California, Berkeley has hired former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm to teach law, business, and public policy courses, New York Lawyer reports. Granholm will also work with the university’s think tanks on law, the environment, business, and public policy. Another course on gender, work and leadership will be taught by Granholm’s husband, Daniel Mulhern, and will be offered by both the law and public policy schools.
  • With the February LSAT coming up, Most Strongly Supported offers a checklist of things not to forget before the big day. Make sure to do a run-through to the test center, accounting for traffic, directions, parking, etc. Get all your documents in order and print out and check your admission ticket. Compile any warm-up material you may need, and fill the permitted 1-gallon Ziploc bag with all your essentials. Most importantly, keep studyingyou’re almost there.
  • According to New York Lawyer, Fordham Law School will double its campus size with a new combination law school building and undergrad residence hall on its Lincoln Center campus. Scheduled to open in the fall of 2014, the building will house 25 audio-visual equipped classrooms, lecture halls, seminar and conference rooms, a two-story atrium, a moot and trial court facility, and a 562,000-volume law library, in addition to housing for about 430 undergraduates.
  • Washington & Lee Law School demonstrates its support for more transparency, Above the Law reports. The school has released 17 pages of employment information to its admitted students. Although much of the info is already public, this move is quite bold and forthcoming of Washington & Lee, especially compared to its peers. The school even offers a breakdown of 1L summer jobs and the percentage of which are actually paid (32%). Now, let’s hope the students will actually take advantage of this information.
  • A Harvard 3L offers some advice in the Harvard Law Record. He recollects that when he tried too hard to be like everyone else, he didn’t find success. However, once he began to focus on life outside of school, he achieved both success and happiness. As he posits, “My success at Harvard Law School was part and parcel with retaining my identity.” He also quotes a law professor who advised that “in order to have direction in life, it is not only necessary to know just who you are, but who you are not.” There is no need to fit into a specific mold in law school or anywhere in life. March to your own beat and stay true to yourself. 

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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 Admissions Round Up

  • Renowned professor of constitutional law Laurence H. Tribe will return to the faculty at Harvard Law School in January and recommence teaching in the 2011-2012 academic year. Due to a benign brain tumor, Tribe has cut short the two-year leave he had taken from HLS to serve as the first Senior Counselor for Access to Justice in the Justice Department. Tribe was appointed University Professor in 2004, which is the highest academic honor a faculty member can receive at Harvard, “reserved for just a handful of professors throughout the university,” according to the HLS web site.
  • The American Bar Association has delayed its decision about accrediting foreign law schools. The council decided it needs more time to complete the study. Meanwhile, this issue has sparked much controversy, with many opposing the concept. While the ABA did note that foreign law students should be spending actual time in the U.S. to “learn U.S. values and ethics,” another determining factor is the “potential negative effect on U.S. lawyers.” We do not need more lawyers flooding the legal job market at the moment, and allowing foreign attorneys to sit for and pass the bar would just create more competition for a dearth of jobs.
  • Interested in law school and choosing a major? A recent study examined which majors tend to yield higher LSAT scores, and the results are somewhat surprising. Of the 29 majors listed, Pre-law and Criminal Justice ranked lowest, with LSAT scores of 148 and 146, respectively. The highest-scoring major was Physics/Math, with an average score of 160, followed by Economics and Philosophy/Theology, which tied with 157. For the complete results, check out Most Strongly Supported.  
  • New Hampshire’s chief justice John Broderick Jr. will be the new dean of the University of New Hampshire School of Law, formerly Franklin Pierce Law Center, New York Lawyer reports. Broderick aims to produce more “practice-ready graduates” by “ensuring that students have a basic grasp on business principles and a general understanding of how to run a law practice.” He also hopes to enhance the school’s excellent reputation in intellectual property, and to look into adding more joint-degree programs, due to the school’s recent affiliation with the University of New Hampshire.
  • For those of you aspiring for a Supreme Court clerkship who don’t know how realistic it is, check out Brian Leiter’s Law School Rankings, which has recently ranked schools according to Supreme Court clerkship placement in the last decade. The schools are ranked by total number of clerks, although the total number of clerks divided by recent class size is listed as well. Harvard takes the top spot, followed by Yale, University of Chicago, Stanford, and Columbia and University of Virginia tied for fifth. 

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Law School News Round Up

  • Southwestern Law School will be the first school on the West Coast to offer an accelerated three-year J.D./MBA program next year, as reported by New York Lawyer. The school already offers a traditional four-year joint program in conjunction with The Peter F. Drucker and Masatosji Ito Graduate School of Management at Claremont Graduate University, and continues this partnership for the three-year program as well. Southwestern was the first school in the country to offer a two-year J.D. program, in 1974. Other schools with three-year J.D./MBA programs include Indiana University Maurer School of Law-Bloomington, Northwestern University School of Law, and Yale Law School.           
  • Above the Law mentions the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law for heading in the right direction in preparing its students for real law practice. The school has launched a Solo and Small Law Firm Incubator, aimed at helping recent grads entering small firm and solo practices. “It will provide affordable office space for about nine tenants, as well as practice management assistance and mentoring so that graduates can gain support in launching their own practices, while also providing pro bono or affordable legal services to the underserved Troost area corridor.” The school also opened an Entrepreneurial Legal Services Clinic in 2002.
  • While the nation added 151,000 jobs overall last month, the legal sector was down 300 jobs in October. This decline follows three straight months of employment gains, with an increase of 2,200 legal jobs in September, New York Lawyer reports. The legal sector has the same total number of jobs currently as there was at this time last year.
  • Those interested in Harvard Law School should take the time to consider their joint/concurrent degree programs, as mentioned in the HLS Admissions blog. Some programs offered include a joint J.D./MBA or joint J.D./ Master’s in Public Health. You can earn a joint J.D./LL.M. by spending a year studying at Cambridge University in the UK. Plus, if you’re interested in other disciplines but don’t necessarily want a joint degree, you can cross-register for up to 10 credits during your time at HLS, so make sure to take advantage. 

 

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Rise in Applicants at Harvard Law

Looks like some fields are thriving in this economy. Applications to Harvard Law School have increased from 7,168 in 2008 to 7,610 in 2010, according to The Harvard Crimson. Plus, of the school’s Class of 2013, 72 percent took time off post-college, with over half of the class taking two or more years off before law school, the most in decades.

HLS has been placing more emphasis on experience, and a larger number of students seem to be applying to law school and then deferring enrollment. Additionally, this year’s student body boasts the highest percentage ever, 37 percent, of students of color for HLS. And with a rise in applications, the pool of prospective students just becomes more competitive.  

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Grade Reform at Harvard Law

Harvard Law School has changed its grading system once again, but this time it almost went unnoticed. Students only found out about the new grading scale if they happened to read the student handbook, until it was reported in the Harvard Law Record.

Students will now receive a point value for each grading distinction, somewhat resembling a traditional GPA scale. These GPAs will be submitted to employers, but students will not have access to them. Plus, HLS will no longer publicize the grading curve. While the law school intends to take pressure off students and shift the focus away from grades, these secretive changes seem to be causing quite an uproar, especially during interview season.


 

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Law School News Round Up

  • Liberty University School of Law was recently awarded full accreditation approval by the ABA. The law school will now continue with its plans to offer other degrees besides the JD both on campus and online, including an LL.M., a Ph.D. in law, and a master’s in Public Policy. The school also aims to create study abroad programs in locations such as Europe, Israel, and Asia, and an accelerated degree program allowing qualifying students to complete both an undergrad and law degree in six years. Plus, the law school and Liberty University will offer a dual degree program this fall, in which students can obtain a master’s and law degree in less time when combined together.
  • As mentioned in Above the Law, Stanford Law School Dean Larry Kramer is hoping to boost Stanford’s ranking to overtake Yale as the top law school in the country. Stanford has already adopted grade reform, like Yale, and now Kramer is actively recruiting professors from both Yale and Harvard. Yet despite its current #3 ranking, Stanford jumping to #1 seems like a long shot. Professor Bill Henderson went so far as to crunch the numbers and discovered that even if Stanford had perfect scores in its GPAs, LSATs, and academic and judicial reputation, it still wouldn’t supersede Yale. Yale’s top spot is secure for the time being, due to its spending of more than $100 thousand per student annually (as compared to Stanford’s ‘mere’ $80 thousand). Looks like it all comes down to dollars and cents. 
  • The Franklin Pierce Law Center has been formally renamed the University of New Hampshire School of Law, now functioning as a public institution, New York Lawyer reports. The only law school in New Hampshire, its campus will remain in Concord, about 40 miles away from the main University campus in Durham. The law school is known for its strong intellectual property program. 
  • According to The GW Hatchet, the incoming first-year class at GW Law School has the highest mean GPA in the history of the school. While the mean LSAT score of 167 has stayed the same, the mean GPA has risen .02 points to 3.79 this year. In April, the school had jumped up eight spots in the U.S. News & World Report’s rankings of the country’s best law schools, reclaiming its No. 20 spot. The law school is now on a search for a new dean, as Dean Frederick Lawrence will serve as the new President of Brandeis University.

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Law School Judicial Clerkship Rankings

U.S. News has recently released its second annual ranking of law schools by the percentage of the 2008 class that was employed as clerks by federal judges. Federal clerkships are considered the most prestigious of judicial clerkships, and clerkships in general can provide lawyers with tremendous experience and significant contacts, giving them an advantage in the difficult legal job market.

U.S. News has also published the percentage of the 2008 class with any level of judicial clerkship—local, state, or federal. According to the data, some law schools send a large number of their graduates to clerkships, with some schools focusing more on local and state clerkships and less on federal ones.

The top ten schools in federal clerkships:

  1. Yale University
  2. Stanford University
  3. Harvard University
  4. Duke University
  5. University of Chicago
  6. University of Pennsylvania
  7. University of Virginia
  8. Columbia University
  9. Vanderbilt University
  10. University of Georgia

The top six schools in all judicial clerkships:

  1. Rutgers, the State University of New JerseyCamden
  2. Seton Hall University
  3. Yale University
  4. Charleston School of Law
  5. University of ColoradoBoulder
  6. University of Montana

If you are interested in a judicial clerkship, check out the this article.

Save 10% on all law school services through July 31st! If you are applying to law school and could use some assistance, check out our early bird special to save. Insert coupon code EB10 at checkout. 

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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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