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Salt Lake City, UT 84112
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S.J. Quinney College of Law

S.J. Quinney College of Law Rating: 5.0/5 (1 votes)

Academics

In addition to the J.D., the law school offers the LL.M. Students may take relevant courses in other programs and apply credit toward the J.D.; a maximum of 12 credits may be applied. The following joint degrees may be earned: J.D./M.B.A. (Juris Doctor/Master of Business Administration), J.D./M.P.A. (Juris Doctor/Master of Public Administration), and J.D./M.P.P (Juris Doctor/Master of Public Policy).

The S.J. Quinney College of Law offers concentrations in corporate law, criminal law, environmental law, family law, intellectual property law, international law, juvenile law, litigation, natural resources, public lands and energy, and constitutional law. In addition, live and simulation component clinics are offered for 2 to 4 credit hours. Clinics may be criminal, in which students work at the offices of the county attorney, U.S. Attorney, federal defender, or Salt Lake legal defenders; civil, in which students represent actual clients from a public-interest law firm; or judicial, in which students act as law clerks to state and federal judges. There are also placements in environmental law, health law, legislative and mediation program locations. In seminars, students perform closely supervised research, analysis, and writing, covering a wide array of topics. Students may spend a semester as full-time clerks in the judicial extern program as part of the judicial clinic. Numerous opportunities exist for students to be paid as research assistants for faculty, or to undertake directed research for credit or advanced legal research courses. Field placements with a public interest law office, Utah Legal Services, Legal Aid Society of Salt Lake, Legal Center for People with Disabilities, Catholic Community Services, and the ACLU are part of the clinical program. Special lecture series include the Leary Lecture, Fordham Debate, Distinguished Jurist in Residence, Law Review Symposium, the Natural Resources Law Forum, and the annual Wallace Stegnar Symposium. Study abroad is possible for upper-level students in the London Law Consortium, a 1-semester, ABA-approved program. The academic support program is available for eligible students and includes a legal process tutorial course, organized study groups, and academic counseling. The college sponsors a summer intern program, funded with private donations, for minority students. Selected students intern with major Salt Lake City law firms for 10 weeks following the completion of their first year and receive a $3000 stipend. The college has hosted and regularly recruits participants from the Council on Legal Education Opportunity Summer Institute, and the Pre-Law Summer Institute. Special interest groups include the Natural Resources Law Forum and the Family Law Symposium. The most widely taken electives are Evidence, Criminal Procedure, and Business Organization.

To earn the J.D., candidates must complete 88 total credits, of which 40 are for required courses. They must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0 in the required courses. The following first-year courses are required of all students: Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Contracts, Criminal Law, Legal Writing and Research, Property, and Torts. Required upper-level courses consist of Advanced Constitutional Law, Professional Ethics, and seminar. Students are not required to take clinical courses. They are, however, strongly encouraged to participate.The required orientation program for first-year students is a 4-day course before classes begin to help students understand the role of law, the tasks of a lawyer, and the method of legal education and study.

In order to graduate, candidates must have a GPA of 2.0 and have completed the upper-division writing requirement.

Admissions

In the fall 2007 first-year class, 940 applied, 340 were accepted, and 122 enrolled. Twenty-three transfers enrolled. The median LSAT percentile of the most recent first-year class was 82; the median GPA was 3.57 on a scale of 4.0. The lowest LSAT percentile accepted was 17; the highest was 99.

Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree and take the LSAT. The most important admission factors include academic achievement, general background, and writing ability. No specific undergraduate courses are required. Candidates are not interviewed.

The application deadline for fall entry is February 1. Applicants should submit an application form, LSAT results, transcripts, a personal statement, a nonrefundable application fee of $60, 1 letter of recommendation, and a resume. Notification of the admissions decision is from January on. The latest acceptable LSAT test date for fall entry is February. The law school uses the LSDAS.

Financial Aid

About 83% 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 $18,400; maximum, $44,750. Awards are based on need and merit. Required financial statements are the FAFSA and College of Law need-based scholarship application. The aid application deadline for fall entry is March 15. Special funds for minority or disadvantaged students include need and merit scholarships, stipend for a summer intern program, and CLEO fellowships. First-year students are notified about their financial aid application between April and June.

Students

About 42% of the student body are women; 16%, minorities; 1%, African American; 6%, Asian American; 7%, Hispanic; and 1%, Native American. The majority of students come from the West (78%). The average age of entering students is 26; age range is 20 to 56. About 45% of students enter directly from undergraduate school, 16% have a graduate degree, and 51% have worked full-time prior to entering law school. About 2% drop out after the first year for academic or personal reasons; 97% remain to receive a law degree.

Students edit the Utah Law Review, Journal of Law and Family Studies, Journal of Land Resources and Environmental Law, and the newspaper, Utah Law Forum. Moot court competitions include the Annual National Moot Court, Pace University Environmental Law Moot Court, and Jessup International Moot Court Competition. In addition, several writing and research competitions are offered in connection with scholarships and awards. Law student organizations, local chapters of national associations, and campus organizations include the Natural Resources Law Forum, Women’s Law Caucus, Minority Law Caucus, Native American Law Student Association, Federalist Society, American Constitution Society, Phi Alpha Delta, Phi Delta Phi, and International Law Society.

The law school operates on a traditional semester basis. Courses for full-time students are offered days only and must be completed within 6 semesters. There is no part-time program. New students are admitted in the fall. There is a 6 to 12-week summer session. Transferable summer courses are offered.

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