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At A Glance

University of Southern California, Gould School of Law

One of the most prominent law schools in the country, USC Law offers an interdisciplinary legal education guided by nationally renowned professors and informed by the diversity of a friendly, smart and collegial student body. Located in one of the largest and most dynamic cities in the world, the school offers myriad opportunities to apply the law to real-world problems through partnerships with some of the world's leading companies and law firms. Through rigorous academic training and practical application of skills, students acquire the experience necessary to succeed as leaders in a global environment. Our location in Los Angeles offers unique opportunities for learning, living and working. Los Angeles is one of the world's great cities. It is the heart of the entertainment industry, the second largest legal market in the country, and de facto capital of the Pacific Rim. Our location in downtown Los Angeles allows our students to learn with those who are shaping the global future.

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University of Southern California, Gould School of Law's Full Profile

Program At a Glance

Total Program Enrollment 637
Incoming LSAT Scores (25th-75th Percentile) 165 - 168
Incoming GPA (25th-75th Percentile) 3.51 - 3.8
Bar Exam First Time Pass Rate 91.3%
Percent Employed (9 Months After Graduation) 85.5%
Tuition $52,598

Overview

Overview

About University of Southern California, Gould School of Law

One of the most prominent law schools in the country, USC Law offers an interdisciplinary legal education guided by nationally renowned professors and informed by the diversity of a friendly, smart and collegial student body. Located in one of the largest and most dynamic cities in the world, the school offers myriad opportunities to apply the law to real-world problems through partnerships with some of the world's leading companies and law firms. Through rigorous academic training and practical application of skills, students acquire the experience necessary to succeed as leaders in a global environment. Our location in Los Angeles offers unique opportunities for learning, living and working. Los Angeles is one of the world's great cities. It is the heart of the entertainment industry, the second largest legal market in the country, and de facto capital of the Pacific Rim. Our location in downtown Los Angeles allows our students to learn with those who are shaping the global future.

Reviews

Many students come to USC’s Gould School of Law for “the weather,” but all end up “staying for the professors” and “friendly student body.” The faculty here is highly praised as being “very approachable” as well as “brilliant and engaging.” “[They’re] some of the brightest professors I’ve ever had,” says a 2L. “They strike the right balance between learning the material and making sure we stay interested and involved through­out the course.” This enthusiasm extends even to those unhappy with their studies. “I hate law school, but I adore USC,” says a 3L. “USC has made what could have been an absolutely nightmarish three years into a tolerable and occasionally even fun experience. Our students are brilliant, funny, and strange. Our professors are either unapologetically academic or real, live working attorneys with loads of hilarious horror stories and practi­cal advice...When you join USC, you join it forever. That’s a good thing. Everyone is miserable in law school, but at least here, you can be miserable together.” Students admit that while “there may be the typical ‘red tape’” when dealing with the administration, the school “wants everyone to succeed” and offers “many resources to help students along.” “The administration is very impressive and accessible,” says a 1L. “They are sup­portive of students making the transition to law school.” Some find that while being “very organized,” the administration can “often treat students like they’re children,” but overall, if students are willing to “ask for help,” the “school administration takes [their] concerns very seriously.”Most professors are “very influenced by the Law and Economics movement,” meaning that “there aren’t many alternative theoretical perspectives presented convincingly, but they are very good at what they do.” Some students would like to see “more emphasis on teaching practical skills in the practical skills courses,” as well as “higher-quality professors for some of the big, basic bar classes.” Others wouldn’t mind more “criminal law” courses. “Also, there is too much focus on firm practice, with much less attention given to students who aren’t interested in working for a large firm.” The issue of Big Firm versus Public Interest careers is a contentious one at USC Law—many feel that the school “puts too much of a focus on entering the big firm marketplace,” while another majority feels that the school “encourages students to go into public interest.” “I know more people who are going into public interest and governmental positions than working in big law firms,” says a 3L.It’s no secret that jobs can be scarce in the current economic climate; however, students find that “the location and reputation of the school are an invaluable asset” when job hunting. That said, many students aren’t so impressed with the Career Services depart­ment. As one 2L explains, “I’m not 100 percent sold on the effectiveness of the Career Center—it feels like our awesome alumni connections makes them complacent.” On the upside, the office “keeps a constant supply of coffee and hot chocolate,” and at least one student says the “career service people played an essential role in my employment.”Despite being located on a “beautiful campus,” the law building is “outdated” and “unimpressive.” “Most of the classrooms are less than aesthetically inspiring, and are, at times, technologically awkward (as in, plugging in your laptop into the sockets under the tops of desks can bring you dangerously close to violating your neighbor’s very per­sonal space),” explains a 1L. Fortunately, students can find a more pleasant atmosphere and some nice places to eat at the brand new Tutor Campus Center, located just a stone’s throw from the law school. Plus, students are hopeful that a new building is on the way. “Meetings have already been held with students regarding elements they want to see, and plenty of windows and a ‘less sucky’ wireless Internet have been promised,” says a 2L. There’s more good news: USC now has a metro stop, so students can ride the light rail to campus.

- The Princeton Review

Academics

Academics

Degree Programs Offered

Graduates Last Year: 169

Description: A program that prepares lawyers educated outside the United States to understand U. S. or Canadian law and jurisprudence.

Job Opportunities:

Lawyers
Represent clients in criminal and civil litigation and other legal proceedings, draw up legal documents, or manage or advise clients on legal transactions. May specialize in a single area or may practice broadly in many areas of law.

Graduates Last Year: 0

Description: An advanced, professional study of tax law and taxation procedures in U.S. or Canadian jurisdictions affecting individuals and corporations.

Job Opportunities:

Lawyers
Represent clients in criminal and civil litigation and other legal proceedings, draw up legal documents, or manage or advise clients on legal transactions. May specialize in a single area or may practice broadly in many areas of law.

Graduates Last Year: 238

Description: A program that prepares individuals for the independent professional practice of law, for taking state and national bar examinations, and for advanced research in jurisprudence. Includes instruction in the theory and practice of the legal system, including the statutory, administrative, and judicial components of civil and criminal law.

Job Opportunities:

Lawyers
Represent clients in criminal and civil litigation and other legal proceedings, draw up legal documents, or manage or advise clients on legal transactions. May specialize in a single area or may practice broadly in many areas of law.
Judicial Law Clerks
Assist judges in court or by conducting research or preparing legal documents.
Administrative Law Judges, Adjudicators, and Hearing Officers
Conduct hearings to recommend or make decisions on claims concerning government programs or other government-related matters. Determine liability, sanctions, or penalties, or recommend the acceptance or rejection of claims or settlements.
Arbitrators, Mediators, and Conciliators
Facilitate negotiation and conflict resolution through dialogue. Resolve conflicts outside of the court system by mutual consent of parties involved.
Judges, Magistrate Judges, and Magistrates
Arbitrate, advise, adjudicate, or administer justice in a court of law. May sentence defendant in criminal cases according to government statutes or sentencing guidelines. May determine liability of defendant in civil cases. May perform wedding ceremonies.
Law Teachers, Postsecondary
Teach courses in law. Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

Graduates Last Year: 2

Description: An advanced, professional study of legal systems and philosophies in comparative perspective.

Job Opportunities:

Lawyers
Represent clients in criminal and civil litigation and other legal proceedings, draw up legal documents, or manage or advise clients on legal transactions. May specialize in a single area or may practice broadly in many areas of law.

Joint Degree Programs Offered

JD/MBA, 3 1/2 to 4 years; JD/MPA, 4 years; JD/Ph.D. in Economics, 5 years; JD/MA in Economics, 4 years; JD/MA in International Relations, 4 years; JD/MA in Communications Management, 4 years; JD/MA in Philosophy, 4 years; JD/MSW, 4 years; JD/Master of Real Estate Development, 3 1/2 to 4 years; JD/Masters of Business Taxation, 3 1/2 to 4 years; JD/MS in Gerontology, 4 years; JD/MPP, 4 years; JD/PHD in Social Science with California Institute of Technology, 5 years; JD/MA in Political Science, 4 years; JD/PHD in Political Science, 5 years.

Specialty Law Programs

  • Civil Procedure
  • Commercial
  • Constitutional
  • Corporation Securities
  • Criminal
  • Government Services
  • Human Rights
  • International
  • Labor
  • Legal Philosophy
  • Property
  • Taxation
  • Intellectual Property

Faculty Information

Total Faculty 133
Full-Time Faculty 48
Deans, Librarians, and Others Who Teach 17
Part-Time Faculty 68
Faculty Gender 54% Male
45% Female
Student Teacher Ratio 11 : 1

Accreditation

Accredited by American Bar Association

Student Body

Student Body
Gender Breakdown 53% Male
47% Female
Student Diversity
Percentage
White 51%
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0%
Multi-racial 4%
International 2%
Hispanic/Latino 8%
Ethnicity Unknown 8%
Black or African American 7%
Asian 19%
American Indian or Alaska Native 0%

Finance

Finance

Sticker Price

On-Campus Off-Campus
Stated Tuition $52,598 Same as On-Campus
Housing $16,000 N/A
Books N/A N/A
Total (before financial aid) $68,598 $52,598

Financial Aid

85% Graduate students receiving financial aid (loans and grants)

$55,551 Average financial aid amount

Admissions

Admissions

Application Information

Deadline for Regular Decision: February 1

Average Age Admitted: 23

Application Fee: $75

Incoming Class

University of Southern California, Gould School of Law's entering class of 2012 enrolled having these exam grades:

Exam Enrollment Type 25th - 75th Percentile
LSAT Full-Time 165 - 168
LSAT Total 165 - 168

University of Southern California, Gould School of Law's entering class of 2012 enrolled having these college GPA's:

Enrollment Type 25th - 75th Percentile
Full-Time 3.51 - 3.8
Total 3.51 - 3.8

Admission Considerations

Very Important: Recommendations, Undergraduate GPA, Personal Essay

Admission Requirements

Required: Personal Essay, Recommendations, Undergraduate GPA, Standardized Test Scores

Optional: Work Experience, Extracurricular Activities, Interview, State Residency

Rankings

Rankings

The Princeton Review

#10 Best Career Prospects

Outcomes

Outcomes

Bar Exam Results

Percent Reporting 92%
First Time Pass Rate 91%
Avg. Pass Rate In This State 72%

Campus Recruitment

Number of Employers Recruiting on Campus 115
First Year Recruitment Time Summer
Second Year Recruitment Time Summer

Employment

Percent Employed (9 Months After Graduation) 86%
Average Starting Salary $145,000
Job Sector Number of Graduates Percent of Graduates
Firm Sized 2-10 36 19%
Firm Sized 11-25 9 5%
Firm Sized 26-50 3 5%
Firm Sized 51-100 4 2%
Firm Sized 101-250 7 4%
Firm Sized 251-500 12 6%
Firm Sized 501+ 49 26%
Business Industry 31 16%
Government 6 3%
Public Interest 8 4%
Federal Clerkship 15 8%
Academia 5 3%
Unemployed Number of Graduates Percent of Graduates
Unemployed, Not Seeking 6 3%
Unemployed, Seeking 19 9%
Pursuing Graduate Degree 2 1%

Top Employment Locations

State Percent Employed
NV 2%
NY 4%
CA 85%
International 1%

Famous Alumni

Well known alumni of University of Southern California, Gould School of Law include:

  • Sol Price - Founder of FedMart and Price Club (Costco)
  • Walter Zifkin - CEO of William Morris Agency
  • Judge Dorothy Nelson - US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Larry Flax - Co-founder California Pizza Kitchen
  • Justice Joyce Kennard - California Supreme Court

Associations & Memberships

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