Policies

THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO LAW SCHOOL POLICIES RELATING TO RECRUITMENT AND CAREER SERVICES

STANDARDS AND INFORMATION FOR EMPLOYERS

The University of Chicago Law School values its relationships with employers and welcomes an exchange of information with employers at all stages of the job search process. This section and the next section on Standards for the Timing of Offers and Decisions are intended to provide clarity on our recruitment policies. If you have questions about these or other matters at any time, please contact the Associate Dean for Career Services.

A. General Provisions 

  1. In addition to the policies in this and the following section on the timing of offers and decisions, The University of Chicago Law School subscribes to the NALP Principles for a Fair and Ethical Recruitment Process, and expects the employers with whom we work to be guided by those Principles as well.

B. Equal Opportunity, Non-Discrimination, and Anti-Harassment Policies

  1. The University of Chicago Law School is committed to the principle of equal opportunity for all persons on the basis of individual merit and therefore does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, or veteran status, and does not discriminate against members of protected classes under the law. The University of Chicago Law School requires all employers using the services and facilities of the Office of Career Services to comply with this policy; with applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations; and with pertinent standards of the American Bar Association and the Association of American Law Schools. An exception to this policy is granted to the United States military.
  1. The University of Chicago Law School is committed to an environment free from discrimination, sexual harassment, and other unlawful forms of harassment. The University of Chicago Law School requires all employers using the services and facilities of the Office of Career Services to comply with this policy; with applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations; and with pertinent standards of the American Bar Association and the Association of American Law Schools.

C. The University of Chicago Quarter System

  1. The University of Chicago Law School’s academic calendar operates on a quarter system, which can affect students’ availability for interviewing and employment.
  1. University of Chicago Law School students do not complete the academic year until late May (2Ls and 3Ls) or the first or second week of June (1Ls), and may not be available for summer employment on the same schedule as students from other law schools.
  1. The University of Chicago Law School’s academic calendar typically begins in late September or early October, which allows students additional time to work between academic years.
  1. Employers are encouraged to provide flexibility in the timing of summer employment to accommodate The University of Chicago Law School’s academic calendar.

D. The University of Chicago Grading System

  1. The University of Chicago Law School has maintained a rigorous grading scale and has resisted grade inflation; as a result, students’ grades can often appear “low” to employers.
  1. The grading scale is a numeric scale that can be compared to letter grades using the following equivalences:

                        A 180 +

                        B 174 -179

                        C 168 -173

                        D 160 -167

                        F 155 - 159

  1. The median grade for all courses and all seminars in which students are graded primarily on the basis of an examination must be 177. The median grade in all paper seminars, clinics, and simulation classes must be no lower than 177 and no higher than 179. Courses in which all students write papers, as well as courses and seminars in which students have the option to write a paper or sit for an examination, must have a median of 177 or 178. All classes designated as first year electives must have a 177 median, regardless of the basis for grading in those classes. The median grade in first year Legal Research and Writing and Lawyering classes must be 178.
  1. To maintain satisfactory academic standing, a student must maintain an average of at least 168.  
  1. The Law School does not provide a GPA on transcripts until a student graduates and it does not publish class ranks.
  1. Information about the frequency of Honors in a typical graduating class can be found on official Law School transcripts or via the Law School Key provided by the Registrar’s Office.

E. Student Privacy

  1. The Law School cannot provide employers with demographic information about any of its students.
  1. The Office of Career Services (“OCS”) can release resumes, transcripts, writing samples, or other materials to employers when individual students provide the information (via Symplicity or directly to OCS) specifically for that purpose.

F. Interview Selection for On-Campus Interview Programs

  1. Employers are not permitted to prescreen students for the purpose of on-campus interviewing.
  1. This includes requesting transcripts or other information about grades in advance of the on-campus interview. Student resumes will be provided in advance of the On-Campus Interview Program. Employers who want additional materials may request that students bring these to the interview.
  1. Additional information about On-Campus Interview Programs may be found here and will be provided to employers who register to participate.

G. Candidate Interviews Outside of On-Campus Interview Programs

  1. Employers (at their discretion) may interview students outside of our On-Campus Interview Programs.
  1. Exceptions to this policy include the specific guidance on 1L interviewing found in the Summer Employment Provisions for First Year Students section below and the prohibition of student interviewing during class (or exam) time.

STANDARDS FOR THE TIMING OF OFFERS AND DECISIONS

To promote fair and ethical practices for the interviewing and decision-making process, the University of Chicago Law School has adopted the following standards for the timing of offers and decisions:

A. General Provisions

  1. All offers to University of Chicago Law School students should remain open for at least two weeks after the date of the offer letter unless the offers are made pursuant to Sections B or D below, in which case the later response date should apply.
  1. Students are expected to accept or release offers or request an extension by the applicable deadline. Offers that are not accepted by the offer deadline expire.
  1. A student should not hold open more than five offers of employment at any one time. For each offer received that places a student over the offer limit, the student should release an offer no later than three business days after the receipt of the excess offer.
  1. University of Chicago Law School students are not permitted to interview during class times. Interviews should be scheduled for a mutually convenient time outside of class and so as not to disrupt students’ studies.
  1. Practices inconsistent with these standards should be reported to the Office of Career Services.
  1. Employers offering part-time or temporary positions for the school term are exempted from the requirements of Paragraphs B and D below.

B. Summer Employment Provisions for Second and Third Year Students

  1. Employers offering positions to students for the following summer should leave those offers open for at least 28 days following the date of the offer letter or until December 30, whichever comes first. Offers made after December 15 for the following summer should remain open for at least two weeks after the date of the offer letter.
  1. If an employer makes an offer to any student before the beginning of the Law School’s on-campus interview program, that offer should not expire until at least 28 days following the first day of the Law School’s on-campus interview program. Chicago’s OCI schedule can be found online here or employers can contact the Office of Career Services at 773-702-9625 or career_services@law.uchicago.edu to determine these dates.
  1. Students should reaffirm these offers within 14 days from the date of the offer letter, if an employer requests such affirmation in its offer letter. Employers that have requested this reaffirmation may retract any offer that is not reaffirmed within the 14-day period.
  1. Students can accept the offer at any time prior to the offer deadline and should strive to make offer decisions in a timely manner.
  1. Employers offering students positions for the following summer and having a total of 40 attorneys or fewer in all offices are exempted from Paragraphs 1-3 of this Section. Instead, offers made on or before December 15 should remain open for at least three weeks following the date of the offer letter or until December 30, whichever comes first, and offers made after December 15 should remain open for at least two weeks.

C. Summer Employment Provisions for First Year Students

  1. To position law students to be as successful as possible, their efforts during the first quarter of law school should focus on their studies rather than on job search activities. Nonetheless, opportunities to learn about professionalism, professional development, and the legal profession are appropriate early in law school, and the University of Chicago Law School welcomes employer participation in student programs focused on professional development and not recruiting.
  1. Prospective employers and first year law students should not initiate contact with one another and employers should not initiate formal one-on-one recruiting contact with students, including applications, interviews, or offers to first year students, before December 1. An exception for earlier recruitment is granted to government employers with extensive security clearance processes.
  1. Interviews should be scheduled for a mutually convenient time outside of class and so as not to disrupt students’ studies.
  1. All offers to first year students for summer employment should remain open for at least two weeks after the date made.
  1. Students may accept the offer at any time prior to the offer deadline and should strive to make offer decisions in a timely manner.

D. Full-Time Employment Provisions

  1. Employers offering full-time positions to commence following graduation to any student previously employed by them should leave those offers open until at least October 1 of the student’s final year of law school, provided that such offers are made prior to or on September 2. Students should reaffirm these offers within thirty days from the date of the offer letter, if an employer requests such reaffirmation in its offer letter. Employers that have requested this reaffirmation may retract any offer that is not reaffirmed within the 30-day period. After September 2 of a student's final year of law school, employers offering full-time positions to commence following graduation to students previously employed by them should leave those offers open for at least 28 days following the date of the offer letter.
  1. Employers offering full-time positions to commence following graduation to any student not previously employed by them should leave those offers open for at least 28 days following the date of the offer letter or until December 30, whichever comes first. Students should reaffirm these offers within 14 days from the date of the offer letter, if an employer requests such reaffirmation in its offer letter. Employers that have requested this reaffirmation may retract any offer that is not reaffirmed within the 14-day period. Offers made after December 15 for full-time positions to commence following graduation should remain open for at least two weeks after the date of the offer letter.
  1. Students may accept the offer at any time prior to the offer deadline and should strive to make offer decisions in a timely manner.
  1. Employers offering students full-time positions to commence following graduation and having a total of 40 attorneys or fewer in all offices are exempted from Paragraphs 1 and 2 of this Section. Instead, offers made on or before December 15 should remain open for at least three weeks following the date of the offer letter or until December 30, whichever comes first, and offers made after December 15 should remain open for at least two weeks.

E. Public Service Extensions for Second and Third Year Students

  1. Students may request that a law firm employer extend the deadline to accept the employer’s offer for summer or post-graduation positions until as late as April 1 if the student is actively pursuing positions with public interest or government organizations. Students may hold open only one law firm offer in such circumstances. Employers are encouraged to grant such requests.