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At A Glance

Vanderbilt University Law School

First-year requirements provide the intellectual foundation on which to build a legal education that is tailored to meet individual needs and interests in the second and third years. Upper-level offerings are almost entirely elective, allowing students to choose from a broad curriculum, combining courses, clinics, externships, independent work, and courses outside the law school to accomplish career goals. Second- and third-year students also have the option of pursuing specific areas of interest through the law school's special academic programs.

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Vanderbilt University Law School's Full Profile

Program At a Glance

Total Program Enrollment 580
Incoming LSAT Scores (25th-75th Percentile) 163 - 170
Incoming GPA (25th-75th Percentile) 3.43 - 3.85
Bar Exam First Time Pass Rate 92.54%
Percent Employed (9 Months After Graduation) 92.3%
Tuition $46,804

Overview

Overview

About Vanderbilt University Law School

First-year requirements provide the intellectual foundation on which to build a legal education that is tailored to meet individual needs and interests in the second and third years. Upper-level offerings are almost entirely elective, allowing students to choose from a broad curriculum, combining courses, clinics, externships, independent work, and courses outside the law school to accomplish career goals. Second- and third-year students also have the option of pursuing specific areas of interest through the law school's special academic programs.

Reviews

Motivated legal eagles tend to fall in love with Vanderbilt University Law School’s “collegial, relaxed environment.” This “collegiality sets it apart from most other law schools of similar academic reputation.” “The people are incredible, the classes are interest­ing and challenging, the building is beautiful, and [hometown] Nashville is the best city in the world.” Others add, “You get all the benefits of a top-five law school, both faculty-wise and job-wise, but in a comfortable and low-key environment.” Academically speaking, Vanderbilt offers an array of joint-degree, specialized, interdisciplinary and clinical offerings. Education here begins with “an orientation week ‘boot-camp’ course called Life of the Law,” during which “all 1L’s are brought up to speed. [The course] gives everyone a sense of what law school [will] be like.” Though many tout the overall academic experience at Vanderbilt as “fantastic,” with “great faculty” and “bright, sociable students,” some students desire “more practical experiences. The only classes that really focus on skills are limited enrollment and/or clinical courses (our clinic is awesome by the way).” The top brass has taken steps to implement classes that remain on “the cutting edge of legal education.” Students who have felt the effect of these changes say, “There are numer­ous specialization programs you can choose from. The most well-known and demanding is probably the law and business program.” Students in this specialization benefit from “the ability to…gain practical experience from actual practitioners.” The legal writing program, however, continues to be “less than inspiring” and “somewhat weak, as com­pared to the rest of the curriculum.”Professors at Vanderbilt “are outstanding; they challenge you to find good arguments and are very fair with students. You can tell they want to teach, not just do research.” In addition, there are “outstanding opportunities for practical experience (externships, clinics).” When it comes to outside help, “Professors are beyond accessible.” They “invite us to their houses for dinner and go out of their way to find us jobs.” Overall students say the administration “is super involved in student life.” “You can easily find a Dean with whom you feel comfortable.” “The administration goes above and beyond to look out for the well-being of the students, especially during the first year when students are adjusting to law school.” Others have a more mixed view, pointing out that though the administra­tion tries to be “helpful and responsive to student needs,” “they don’t listen to what we actually need versus what they think we need.”In the wake of recent renovations, classrooms at Vanderbilt are “comfortable and up-to-date on technology with remote-control everything. Many of the smaller classrooms are beautiful conference rooms with high-tech amenities. Even the hallways are littered with lounge furniture.” When it comes to students’ list of gripes, very few rumblings are heard save for a few complaints about the “tough job market.” Some feel that Career Services “does not do enough to give us access to alumni or search out alternative career paths.” Others cite a “strong alumni network” and applaud “a strong Career Services staff” that has “eased the stress of the floundering economy.” As one student aptly appends, “law school opens doors, but the extent to which certain doors will always [be open] depends on the student.”

- The Princeton Review

Academics

Academics

Degree Programs Offered

Graduates Last Year: 35

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: 2

Description: An advanced, professional study of the law and process related to the regulation of businesses and the financial services industry. Includes instruction in corporate law, antitrust law, securities law and regulation, negotiation, incorporation, partnerships, trusts, and related topics

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: 206

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.

Joint Degree Programs Offered

JD/MBA-4 years., JD/MA-4 years., JD/PhD-7 years., JD/MDiv-4 years., JD/MTS-4 years., JD/MD- 6 years, JD/MPP-4 years., LLM/MA of Latin American Studies-2 years, PhD in Law and Economics 5-6 years

Specialty Law Programs

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

Faculty Information

Total Faculty 90
Full-Time Faculty 38
Deans, Librarians, and Others Who Teach 12
Part-Time Faculty 40
Faculty Gender 65% Male
34% Female
Student Teacher Ratio 13 : 1

Accreditation

Accredited by American Bar Association

Student Body

Student Body
Gender Breakdown 56% Male
44% Female
Student Diversity
Percentage
White 61%
Multi-racial 1%
International 4%
Hispanic/Latino 4%
Ethnicity Unknown 15%
Black or African American 10%
Asian 6%
American Indian or Alaska Native 0%

Finance

Finance

Sticker Price

On-Campus Off-Campus
Stated Tuition $46,804 Same as On-Campus
Housing N/A N/A
Books N/A N/A
Total (before financial aid) $46,804 $46,804

Financial Aid

82% Graduate students receiving financial aid (loans and grants)

$70,146 Average financial aid amount

Admissions

Admissions

Application Information

Deadline for Regular Decision: April 1

Average Age Admitted: 23

Application Fee: $50

Incoming Class

Vanderbilt University Law School's entering class of 2012 enrolled having these exam grades:

Exam Enrollment Type 25th - 75th Percentile
LSAT Full-Time 163 - 170
LSAT Total 163 - 170

Vanderbilt University Law School's entering class of 2012 enrolled having these college GPA's:

Enrollment Type 25th - 75th Percentile
Full-Time 3.43 - 3.85
Total 3.43 - 3.85

Admission Considerations

Very Important: Personal Essay, Recommendations, Undergraduate GPA

Admission Requirements

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

Optional: Academic GPA, Interview, Work Experience

Rankings

Rankings

The Princeton Review

#5 Best Quality of Life

Outcomes

Outcomes

Bar Exam Results

Percent Reporting 72%
First Time Pass Rate 93%
Avg. Pass Rate In This State 82%

Campus Recruitment

Number of Employers Recruiting on Campus 300
First Year Recruitment Time Summer
Second Year Recruitment Time Summer

Employment

Percent Employed (9 Months After Graduation) 92%
Average Starting Salary $105,000
Job Sector Number of Graduates Percent of Graduates
Firm Sized 2-10 14 8%
Firm Sized 11-25 8 4%
Firm Sized 26-50 9 4%
Firm Sized 51-100 5 3%
Firm Sized 101-250 13 7%
Firm Sized 251-500 8 4%
Firm Sized 501+ 35 19%
Business Industry 13 7%
Government 26 14%
Public Interest 13 7%
Federal Clerkship 23 13%
State Clerkship 9 5%
Unknown Employer Type 2 1%
Unemployed Number of Graduates Percent of Graduates
Unemployed, Not Seeking 1 1%
Unemployed, Seeking 5 3%
Pursuing Graduate Degree 4 2%

Top Employment Locations

State Percent Employed
GA 9%
NY 14%
TN 23%
International 2%

Famous Alumni

Well known alumni of Vanderbilt University Law School include:

  • Pauline Gore - Attorney , Mother of VP Al Gore
  • Paul Atkins - SEC Commissioner
  • Martha Daughtrey - US Circuit Court Judge
  • Fred Thompson - Senator; Counsel Watergate Committee, Actor
  • Greg Abbott - Texas Attorney General

Associations & Memberships

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