Law School

Harvard University
Address
1563 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138
Web  http://www.law.harvard.edu Admission
Phone
(617) 495-3109
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National

Opportunities to put classroom lessons to work start early at Harvard Law School. Through the school’s Student Practice Organizations, first-year students can test their legal skills by helping local musicians understand copyright laws or representing state prison inmates at disciplinary hearings, among other opportunities. Older students can partake in HLS legal clinics, the largest offering of any school in the world. All students must complete at least 40 hours of pro bono, or volunteer, work before graduating.
HLS is unique in its grading procedures; instead of traditional letter grades, students receive a distinction of Honors, Pass, Low Pass, or Fail. The HLS buildings are folded into the university campus in Harvard Square, a hub of student life with restaurants, bars, and shops in Cambridge, Mass. Students can live in on-campus dormitories, suites, and apartments, though more than 60 percent find housing off campus. To give legal education a global slant, students can check out the joint J.D./LL.M. program between HLS and the U.K.’s University of Cambridge or can study abroad for a three-week winter term or a semester.
For those prospective students worried about law school debt, HLS offers the Low Income Protection Plan to help graduates with minimal salaries manage their student loans. Among the school’s most prominent alumni are President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama, as well as more than a dozen current and former Supreme Court Justices, including Chief Justice John Roberts.

 
Stanford Law School 
Address
1Crown Quadrangle, 559 Nathan Abbott Way Stanford, CA 94305
Web  http://www.law.stanford.edu
Admission
Phone
(650) 723-4985
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
Students can chart their own academic course at Stanford Law School. There are more than 25 joint degree options offered in conjunction with other schools at Stanford University, including the highly ranked Graduate School of Business. Most J.D. and master’s joint degrees can be completed in three years, the same amount of time that a traditional law degree takes. In addition to joint degree programs at Stanford, law students can earn a subsequent degree at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and at the Johns Hopkins Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies.
Law students pursuing a traditional J.D. can begin to customize their education as early as their second year through a wide variety of elected courses. Stanford was among the first law schools to experiment with clinics, training tools in which students help real clients with their legal issues. Today, there are about 10 clinics for students to check out. Students can also get involved in more than 50 student organizations and about 10 student-run journals, in addition to community service projects.
For a break from the law school grind, students can explore the surrounding area of Palo Alto, Calif., or head to nearby beaches, the closest of which are about a half an hour away. Law students may live on campus in dormitories or apartments. Notable alumni of Stanford Law School include William Rehnquist, former Supreme Court Justice; Miriam Rivera, former Vice President and Deputy General Counsel at Google; and Robert Paul Cochran, Emmy-winning creator of television series 24.

 
Yale Law School
Address
PO Box 208215 New Haven, CT 0652
Web  http://www.law.yale.edu
Admission
Phone
(203) 432-4995
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
At this highly ranked, Ivy League law school, traditional grades no longer exist. In fact, students do not earn any grades at all during their first term at Yale Law School; afterwards, they are graded only by honors, pass, or low pass. Class sizes are small, often with about 20 students. 
There are no areas of concentration at Yale, though students may tailor course selections to suit their interests. Joint degrees are offered in conjunction with other professional and graduate schools at Yale, including the highly ranked School of Management. Students can also take courses at these schools without integrating a second major. Especially ambitious students can earn an accelerated, integrated J.D./M.B.A. in three years, the same amount of time it takes to complete a traditional J.D.
With more than 20 legal clinics at Yale, students can immerse themselves in real-life legal experiences as early as their first year. Students represent real clients in domestic violence disputes, apartment eviction proceedings, and more. In addition to clinical experience, students can test their legal smarts in workshops and on-campus centers.
Outside of the classroom, students have about 50 organizations to check out, from the student a cappella group Habeas Chorus to the Yale Federalist Society. Students can live in university-owned graduate student housing in New Haven, Conn., though most choose to live elsewhere around town.
Among the law school’s most notable alumni are former President Bill Clinton and Supreme Court Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas.
 
Columbia Law School
Address
435 W. 116th Street New York, NY 10027
Web  http://www.law.columbia.edu
Admission
Office
(212) 854-2670
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
There are about 400 students in each class at Columbia Law School, and law students can choose elective courses as early as the spring of their first year. Law students can also tack on an additional master’s or doctoral degree to their J.D., completing programs at other Columbia University schools like the Business School, the Graduate School of Journalism, and the Mailman School of Public Health. There is also a joint degree program offered through other institutions, including Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Columbia Law School does not offer part-time or evening programs.
Columbia Law School has special programs to help law students pursuing specific placements, such as judicial clerkships or teaching careers. The school also has about 30 centers on campus, which explore topics as varied as global legal transformation and Israeli legal studies. For a further international slant, law students can study abroad in more than 10 countries and can complete a foreign degree while abroad. Students can live in university housing on the school’s campus in New York City.
Notable alumni include Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and former President Theodore Roosevelt.

 
Georgetown University Law Center
Address
600 New Jersey Avenue NW Washington, DC 20001
Web  http://www.law.georgetown.edu
Admission
Office
(202) 662-9015
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
The Georgetown Law Center is located near the heart of the American federal government in Washington, D.C. In addition to the traditional J.D., the Law Center offers joint degree programs such as the J.D./Ph.D. in Government program, which examines the effect of law on American government and political processes. There are additional joint degree programs offered with other highly ranked departments at Georgetown University, including a J.D./M.B.A. in conjunction with the McDonough School of Business, as well as a J.D./M.P.H. program offered in conjunction with the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. In the summer, the Georgetown Law Center also offers a Foundations of American Law and Legal Education program for foreign-trained lawyers looking to practice in the U.S.
Students can get hands-on legal practice in nearly 15 clinics, including the D.C. Street Law Clinic, in which Georgetown students teach high schoolers and community members about the law. There are about 20 research centers, institutes, and initiatives, including the Sandra Day O’Connor Project on the State of the Judiciary and the Georgetown State-Federal Climate Resource Center. About 10 legal journals, including the Georgetown Journal on Poverty Law & Policy and the Georgetown Journal of Law and Modern Critical Race Perspectives, examine a wide variety of issues. About 300 students may live in the university-owned Gewirz Student Center, which also includes a moot courtroom, student lounges, and a child care facility.
Notable Georgetown Law alumni include Greta Van Susteren, a FOX News Channel anchor, and Thomas Leavey, cofounder of Farmers Insurance Group.
 
Northwestern University School of Law
Address
400 Huntington Avenue Boston, MA 02115
Web  http://northeastern.edu/law
Admission
Office
(617) 373-2395
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
The law school at Northeastern University has an application deadline of March 1. The full-time program application fee at the law school at Northeastern University is $75. Its tuition is full-time: $41,066 per year. The student-faculty ratio is 14.2:1. The law school at Northeastern University has 79 full- and part-time faculty on staff. Of the 2009 graduates, 63.3 percent were employed at graduation.
To see which law firms rank the highest, please visit U.S. News Best Law Firms.
 
UC Berkeley School of Law
Address
Boalt Hall Berkeley, CA 94720
Web  http://www.law.berkeley.edu
Admission
Office
(510) 642-2274
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
In an effort to end student rivalry, the UC-Berkeley School of Law does not use letter grades or GPAs. Students are also not ranked amongst their peers.
The law school has pioneered curriculums like intellectual property law and technology-related law and offers specialized curricular programs in areas such as Clean Technology Law and Environmental Law. Students can tailor academics to their interests from the second semester onward. The school also offers unique survey courses, like Wine Law, and students can create their own electives, too.
Students can get involved in clinics, on-campus think tanks, more than 10 student publications. Advanced law students can take their classroom education up a notch through the school’s Field Placement program, which places students in organizations like the Federal Trade Commission and the Sierra Club Environmental Law Program.
For a break from studying, students can venture into nearby San Francisco or take a quick trip to local beaches. Students can live in nearby university-owned housing, though most choose to live elsewhere in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Notable graduates include David Estrada, YouTube managing counsel at Google Inc., and Terdema Ussery, chief executive officer of the Dallas Mavericks.
 
University of Michigan Law School
Address
625 S. State Street Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Web  http://www.law.umich.edu/
Admission
Office
(734) 764-0537
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
Students at the University of Michigan—Ann Arbor Law School can get a jump-start on their legal education by beginning in the summer. About a quarter of students will enroll in Summer Start, an early education program that transitions students into Michigan Law and gives them more flexibility with course selection later in their academic career. In a typical year, the class at the Law School has about 370 students, roughly split between male and female.
Students can beef up their legal education with a dual degree in areas like Law and Business Administration, Law and Japanese Studies, and Law and Natural Resources. To give the legal education a global slant, all students must take a course in Transnational Law, and law students can spend a semester abroad at Amsterdam Law School, Japan’s Waseda University Law School, or Germany’s Bucerius Law School, to name a few.
There are more than 50 student organizations to get involved in, from the Law School Hockey Team to a rock climbing group called MLaw Rocks, and more than five academic publications to write for. Students can live on the University of Michigan campus in the Lawyers Club residence hall or in university-owned apartments. Students who live off campus can find housing options throughout Ann Arbor, Mich., a vibrant city that surrounds the university.
Notable alumni of Michigan Law School include Ann Coulter, a conservative political commentator and author; Valerie Jarrett, President Obama’s senior adviser; and Bob Woodruff, ABC News
 
University of Pennsylvania Law School 
Address
3400 Chestnut Street Philadelphia, PA 19104
Web  http://www.law.upenn.edu
Admission
Office
(215) 898-7400
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
At the University of Pennsylvania, professional students can put a cross-disciplinary slant on their education. Penn Law students can enroll in courses in other academic departments, and other professional school students can take Penn Law courses, too.
With a few additional courses, students can create an area of specialization by earning a certificate in areas like East Asian Studies or Gender and Sexuality Studies. Law students can also earn an additional degree in three years, completing both a J.D. and another degree, including an M.B.A. through The Wharton School, a master’s in bioethics through the School of Medicine, or a master of City & Regional Planning through the School of Design.
The law school is housed in several buildings on the Penn campus in University City, Philadelphia, which allows for a quick trip to other professional school buildings. Law students can apply for on-campus housing. For trips further afield, students can study abroad through seven official programs and can even earn a master’s degree in Global Business Law through France’s Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne Law School and Institut d’Études Politiques (Sciences Po).
Students must complete at least 70 hours of pro bono work before they can graduate from Penn Law. In addition to community service projects, students can spend their free time getting involved in legal clinics and more than 60 student organizations like Penn Law Boxing and the Urban Law Reform group.
Notable alumni of Penn Law School include George Wharton Pepper, founder of law firm Pepper Hamilton LLP, and Sam Hamadeh, cofounder of career site Vault.com.


 
University of Virginia School of Law 
Address
580 Massie Road Charlottesville, VA 229
Web  http://www.law.virginia.edu
Admission
Office
(434) 924-7351
School
Type
Private
Law school designation
National
Like all the academic departments at the University of Virginia, the School of Law operates on a strict, student-run honor system. Students pledge not to lie, cheat, or steal, and anyone found guilty by a peer jury is expelled from the school. Each class has about 375 students, and the student body has slightly more females than males. Students can earn joint degrees, such as a J.D. and an M.B.A. through the Darden School of Business in four years.
Students can tailor their education at special school institutes like the Center for Oceans Law and Policy and the Center for National Security Law. Thanks to a $1 million gift from former Price is Right host and animal rights advocate Bob Barker, the school has an animal law program. There are more than 60 on-campus organizations to check out, and students can test their legal skills in about 20 hands-on clinics.
Students can study the law abroad during in their second and third years, either through a semester exchange program in countries including New Zealand, Germany, Israel, and England, or for 10 days in Paris. Third year students can earn a dual degree from France’s Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne Law School and Institut d’Études Politiques (Sciences Po) and can sit for the French bar exam. There is limited on-campus housing for law students, and most choose to live elsewhere in Charlottesville, Va.
Notable alumni of UVA Law School include Janet Napolitano, U.S. secretary of homeland security, and Will Shortz, New York Times crossword puzzle editor.
   
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