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February 27, 2012

Northwestern is #2 “go-to” law school for large-firm legal practice

by dan rodriguez

So says the National Law Journal in their annual ranking of law schools.  Tremendous achievement; well-deserved recognition.  Here is the memorandum I sent out to our law community this morning.

I am pleased to report that The National Law Journal (NLJ) has tabbed Northwestern Law School as the nation’s #2 “go-to” law school in its just released 2012 rankings.

This annual NLJ listing identifies the 50 law schools with the highest percentage of 2011 JD graduates hired by NLJ 250 law firms.  In total, 52.1% of our 2011 graduates accepted positions with NLJ 250 firms.  Last year, we held the 8th spot with 44.4% of our 2010 graduates going to these same firms.

With this most recent result, we have ranked in the top five on this measure for five of the past six years (and always in the top 10 during the same period).

The list of “go-to” law schools was compiled from recruiting information that law firms provided on The National Law Journal’s annual survey of the nation’s largest law firms.

Additionally, The National Law Journal “identified firm favorites – the schools where NLJ 250 firms recruited the most graduates.”  Northwestern Law is the favorite of 3 firms (Baker & McKenzie, Kirkland & Ellis, and McDermott Will & Emery) and we are exceeded only by Harvard on this listing.

While the difficult economy continues to present immediate challenges to students hitting the job market, our consistently high position in this ranking is a testament to our strong reputation.  This is the second time this year that we have placed very highly in an employment-based ranking.  In the fall, The Princeton Review designated Northwestern Law #1 for Best Career Prospects.

For your information, the top 15 law schools are (percent hired by NLJ 250 in parentheses):

1.   University of Pennsylvania (56.9%)
2.   Northwestern (52.1%)
3.   Columbia (51.7%)
4.   Harvard (48.9%)
5.   Stanford (48.1%)
6.   University of California – Berkeley (45.9%)
7.   University of Chicago (45.3%)
8.   Duke (40.6%)
9.   New York University (40.1%)
10. University of Virginia (39.8%)
11  Cornell (38.3%)
12. University of Southern California (32.9%)
13. University of Michigan (31.5%)
14. Georgetown (31.1%)
15. Yale (29.8%)

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