STANFORD LAW SCHOOL
Stanford Law School L.L.M Program
||Crown Quadrangle, 559 Nathan Abbott Way | Stanford | CA 94305
|Number of students enrolled
|Bar passage rate (first-time test takers)
|Law school cost (tuition and fees)
||$49,179 per year
Stanford Law School was founded in 1893. The inaugural faculty included dignitaries like former U.S. President Benjamin Harrison. While the traditional environment has always stressed on creating a comfort zone both for students and faculty, the small classes and high attention from professors ensure quality. The environment is summed up by a comment from Kathleen Sullivan, former Dean of Stanford Law School: "Who could resist a world-class law school in paradise?"
Stanford Law School has been putting great stress on preparing students to work collaboratively with other professions for the past few years. Taking a multidisciplinary approach Stanford is one of those few law schools that create students suitable for working both in law firms and within large corporate houses. It is common to find students complementing their JD in intellectual property with an MS in bioengineering or someone interested in environmental litigation doing an MS in environment and resources along with his/her JD. As of this year, Stanford Law School offers 27 formal joint degrees. The number of students enrolling for joint degrees offered by the school has increased nine-fold over the past six years.
Rankings and reputation
In the U.S. News Law School Rankings published in 2012, Stanford Law School overtook Harvard to gain the second place on the list. According to a Forbes list of Best Law Schools to Get Rich, Stanford is at the top with a mid-career median pay of $236,000.
Currently in the US News rankings, Stanford ranked within the top 10 in 2 (IP and Environmental law) out of nine specialty categories. That said, Stanford was not ranked in Health Law, Trial Advocacy, and Legal Writing. In the US News rankings from 1991, Stanford ranked at the 2nd spot 10 times, at the 3rd spot 7 times, and at 4th position once during 1991. While Yale stands at the top of the rankings undisputed, Stanford, over the last decade and more have continually dislodged Harvard to gain the 2nd spot in overall rankings.
Stanford also was featured in a list of top law schools analyzed and ranked by LawCrossing CEO Harrison Barnes. This list can be found here: Top Law Schools Analyzed and Ranked by America's Top Legal Recruiter.
Out of an average of 4500 applicants each year, Stanford Law School chooses 170. Applications are submitted electronically by completing prescribed forms. The application fee is $100 with prescribed procedures for waivers. A one-two page resume needs to be attached with the application for admission listing academic, extracurricular and professional activities.
The median undergraduate grade point average for successful admissions is 3.9 and the median LSAT score is 170. In its selection of candidates, Stanford puts great emphasis on personality, work-experience, extracurricular activities, and previous graduate study records. At least seventy five percent of new admissions have previous work-experience and at least a quarter of new admissions have another graduate degree.
One of the most important parts of the admission application is the 'personal statement.' The personal statement required to be submitted by each applicant needs to be about two pages describing 'important or unusual' aspects of the applicant, which are not otherwise apparent.
A statement from the Undergraduate Dean is required in prescribed format, but the requirement is waived in case of foreign applicants. Two to four letters of recommendation must be sent directly to the 'Letter of Recommendation and Evaluation Service.' Letters that are directly sent in to the Office of Admissions are rejected. LSAT scores and Credential Assembly Service Reports are mandatory.
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Harrison Barnes does a weekly free webinar with live Q&A for attorneys and law students each Wednesday at 10:00 am PST. You can attend anonymously and ask questions about your career, this article, or any other legal career-related topics. You can sign up for the weekly webinar here: Register on Zoom
Harrison also does a weekly free webinar with live Q&A for law firms, companies, and others who hire attorneys each Wednesday at 10:00 am PST. You can sign up for the weekly webinar here: Register on Zoom
You can browse a list of past webinars here: Webinar Replays
You can also listen to Harrison Barnes Podcasts here: Attorney Career Advice Podcasts
You can also read Harrison Barnes' articles and books here: Harrison's Perspectives
Harrison Barnes is the legal profession's mentor and may be the only person in your legal career who will tell you why you are not reaching your full potential and what you really need to do to grow as an attorney--regardless of how much it hurts. If you prefer truth to stagnation, growth to comfort, and actionable ideas instead of fluffy concepts, you and Harrison will get along just fine. If, however, you want to stay where you are, talk about your past successes, and feel comfortable, Harrison is not for you.
Truly great mentors are like parents, doctors, therapists, spiritual figures, and others because in order to help you they need to expose you to pain and expose your weaknesses. But suppose you act on the advice and pain created by a mentor. In that case, you will become better: a better attorney, better employees, a better boss, know where you are going, and appreciate where you have been--you will hopefully also become a happier and better person. As you learn from Harrison, he hopes he will become your mentor.
To read more career and life advice articles visit Harrison's personal blog.