A Distinguished U.S. Law School

Some international students may be unfamiliar with the reputations of individual American law schools. While there is no simple way to establish the relative reputations of the leading schools in this country, the following information may be helpful in comparing Chicago to other law schools.

Law schools encourage their J.D. students to seek clerkships with judges following graduation. Clerkships last for one or two years. They provide graduates with writing experience and insights into the judicial decision making process. A faculty committee at Chicago assists students in the application process. In recent years approximately 20% of the students in each graduating class have obtained judicial clerkships. Graduates who particularly enjoy the clerkship experience often apply to justices on the United States Supreme Court for a second clerkship following the one they took after graduation. A law school's success in placing its graduates with Supreme Court justices is in part a function of its reputation with the judiciary. During the 11 years covering the 1998-1999 through 2008-2009 U.S. Supreme Court terms, nine law schools each had 10 or more of their graduates serve as clerks to justices on the Court. Based upon the size of the typical entering class, the per capita representation for each school during that period is presented below. 

 

Typical
Entering
JD Class

1 Clerkship
per number
of Graduates

Yale

190 

1/28 

Chicago

190 

1/54

Harvard

550 

1/66

Stanford

170 

1/73 

Columbia

390 

1/180

Virginia

375

1/266

Berkeley              

290

1/293

NYU

450

1/330

Michigan

370

1/377