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Students interested in pursuing careers in environmental law have several options available to them at Lewis & Clark. J.D. candidates can get certificates in environmental and natural resources law. Students interested in studying beyond their J.D.s can get LL.M.s in environmental law. Graduates of both programs have had much success in the public, private, and government sectors. From those sectors, they have gone into judicial and teaching positions. Students can also choose to participate in several groups pertaining to environmental law, including the Environmental Law Caucus, Public Interest Law Project, and Student Animal Legal Defense Fund.
Aside from environmental law, students can get their certificates in business law,tax law, intellectual property law, and criminal law.
Lewis & Clark Law School is strategically placed—it is the only law school in Oregon's largest city, Portland. It was founded in 1884 as a state law school. When the state legislature attempted to move the school to Eugene, administrators converted it into a private institution. It was reestablished as the Northwestern College of Law and operated in downtown Portland for half a century. In 1965, Northwestern College of Law merged with Lewis & Clark College. Since then, the law school has established itself as a premiere institution for legal education. It is currently ranked as a Top 100 law school by U.S. News & World Report.
According to the career services website, there were 223 graduates in the class of 2005. 214 of them reported they were actively seeking employment. Of the 214 who were seeking employment, 198 had found employment and two were enrolled in full-time degree programs.
Lewis & Clark offers an evening division, which enables students to spread out their classes over the course of four years. Students enrolled in evening classes take half as many course hours at a time as students in the day program. Instead of taking 13 to 18 hours, they take eight to 12.
The school stresses the importance of public service. The Public Interest Law Project (PILP) was established in 1990 as part of the National Association of Public Interest Law (NAPIL), now known as Equal Justice Works. PILP encourages students to pursue public interest work. Stipends are given to students who work in public-interest areas during the summer. PILP has also established a loan repayment program for students who choose to pursue careers in the public-service arena. The program hosts several events throughout the year in order to raise money, such as auctions and a poker night that features a Texas hold 'em tournament with a $15 buy-in.
According to the school's website, there are many reasons students choose to attend Lewis & Clark for their legal educations, the most important of which is "the quality and attitude of the people on campus. Visitors notice students and faculty having lunch together in the student lounge, discussing questions long after class has ended. Equally evident is the sense of shared effort and mutual support among faculty, staff, and students."
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