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1021 Georgia Avenue
Macon, GA 31207
p. 800-637-2378
f. 478-301-2989
w. <IT>www.Law.Mercer.edu<RO>

Walter F. George School of Law

Walter F. George School of Law Rating: 3.4/5 (5 votes)

Academics

Students may take relevant courses in other programs and apply credit toward the J.D.; a maximum of 6 hours in the school of credits may be applied. The following joint degrees may be earned: J.D./M.B.A. (Juris Doctor/Master of Business Administration).

The Walter F. George School of Law offers concentrations in legal writing, research and drafting certificate program, and law and public service program. In addition, clinics include Death Penalty Clinic, a three-credit course that places second- and third-year students under the joint supervision of the staff attorneys of Georgia Capital Defenders and a professor; the Public Defender Criminal Defense Clinic, worth 3 credits; the Habeaus Project for second- and third-year students, also worth 3 credits. Each student must elect at least 1 seminar in the third year or 2 credit hours. Approximately 12 seminars are offered each year on a range of subjects from legal ethics to mass media. Supervised internships of 1 to 3 credit hours may be arranged under the Public Interest Practicum Program. Judicial Field Placement, a three-credit course for second-year students, places students with federal and state court judges to serve as clerks. There is a weekly classroom component as well. Mercer offers numerous lecture series including the John James lecture, Law Review Symposium, and Ethics and Professionalism symposium. Study abroad programs are available in conjunction with Stetson University Law School. An academic tutorial program offers one-on-one mentoring to any student in academic difficulty. Minority programs include Mercer’s BLSA organization, which conducts minority orientation prior to the first year. Various minority groups on campus visit HBC schools during the year and work with BLSA and minority student organizations. Mercer Pro Bono Clinic and Public Interest Foundation provide volunteer services for local legal aid organizations. The most widely taken electives are Business Associations, Criminal Procedure, and Domestic Relations.

To earn the J.D., candidates must complete 91 total credits, of which 59 are for required courses. The following first-year courses are required of all students: American Constitutional System, Contracts, Criminal Law, Introduction to Law Study, Introduction to Legal Research, Jurisdiction and Judgments, Legal Analysis, Legal Profession, Legal Writing I, Property, Sales, and Torts. Required upper-level courses consist of Civil Lawsuits, Evidence, Introduction to Alternative Dispute Resolution, Introduction to Counseling, Law of Lawyering, Legal Writing II, and Statutory Law and Analysis. All students must take Introduction to Counseling and Introduction to Dispute Resolution courses. Each student also must elect at least 1 course from a list of advanced skills courses that use simulations of law practice situations.The required orientation program for first-year students is a 1-week, Introduction to Law Study course, taught before the start of regular first-year courses. It carries 1 hour of credit, has an exam, and is graded. Additional information is offered in a 3-day session before the start of classes.

In order to graduate, candidates must have completed the upper-division writing requirement.

Admissions

In the fall 2007 first-year class, 1367 applied, 419 were accepted, and 148 enrolled. Two transfers enrolled. The median GPA of the most recent first-year class was 3.44.

Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree and take the LSAT. The most important admission factors include LSAT results, GPA, and writing ability. All factors in the application process are important and considered. No specific undergraduate courses are required. Candidates are not interviewed.

The application deadline for fall entry is March 15. Applicants should submit an application form, LSAT results, transcripts, a personal statement, a nonrefundable application fee of $50, 2 letters of recommendation, and a personal statement to be used as a writing sample. Notification of the admissions decision is on a rolling basis. The latest acceptable LSAT test date for fall entry is February. The law school uses the LSDAS.

Financial Aid

About 85% of current law students receive some form of aid. The average annual amount of aid from all sources combined, including scholarships, loans, and work contracts, is $38,135; maximum, $47,142. Awards are based on need and merit. Students are awarded merit scholarships and need- and non-need based loans. Required financial statements are the FAFSA and institutional application. The aid application deadline for fall entry is April 1. Special funds for minority or disadvantaged students include the National CLEO Program and Georgia Fellowship Program. First-year students are notified about their financial aid application at the time of application to law school.

Students

About 45% of the student body are women; 14%, minorities; 11%, African American; 3%, Asian American; 3%, Hispanic; and 1%, Native American. The majority of students come from the South (90%). The average age of entering students is 23; age range is 21 to 43. About 4% drop out after the first year for academic or personal reasons; 96% remain to receive a law degree.

Students edit the Mercer Law Review, and the Journal of Southern Legal History. National moot court competitions held annually are the National Moot Court, Gabrielli National Family Law, and Gibbons National Criminal Procedure. Other competitions include the Georgia Intrastate, Vale National Corporate Law, National Negotiation, National Client Counseling, National Civil Rights, and Frederick Douglass competitions. Law student organizations include the Association of Women Law Students, Student Bar Association and Project Equality. There are local chapters of Phi Alpha Delta, Phi Delta Phi, and Black Law Student Association. Other campus organizations include Environmental Law Society, International Law Society, and Legal Aid Volunteer Association.

The law school operates on a traditional semester basis. Courses for full-time students are offered days only and must be completed within 3 years. For part-time students, courses are offered days only and must be completed within 5 years. New full- and part-time students are admitted in the fall. There is a 7-week summer session. Transferable summer courses are offered.

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