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 13 credits may be applied. The following joint degrees may be earned: J.D./M.A. (Juris Doctor/Master of Arts in international political economy), J.D./M.B.A. (Juris Doctor/Master of Business Administration), and J.D./M.S.W. (Juris Doctor/Master of Social Work).
The School of Law offers concentrations in corporate law, criminal law, entertainment law, environmental law, family law, international law, juvenile law, labor law, litigation, maritime law, media law, securities law, sports law, tax law, torts and insurance, European Community law, trial advocacy, public interest law, and professional responsibility. Clinics, which are open to upper-class students who have satisfied prerequisites, include Criminal Defense, Immigration Law, and Community Economic Development. Seminars, usually worth 2 or 3 credits, are also open to upper-class students; a selection of recent offerings includes Advanced Copyright Law, Civil Rights, and Environmental Law. After the first year, students may participate in a broad range of actual practice settings in federal and state courts, administrative agencies, prosecutors’ and defenders’ offices, and nonprofit agencies for 2 credits. Research is done through the Stein Institute of Law and Ethics Research fellowships and the Crowley International Human Rights Program. Field work may be undertaken in the Crowley International Human Rights Program and in the noncredit Pro Bono program, where students assist in preparing cases under the direction of attorneys from the Legal Aid Society and various public agencies and nonprofit organizations through Fordham’s Public Interest Center. Special lecture series include John F. Sonnett Lectures by distinguished judges and litigators; Stein Lectures in ethics and professional responsibility; Noreen E. McNamara Lectures by outstanding women in the profession; and Robert L. Levine Lectures by distinguished legal scholars. Students may study abroad for up to 1 year for up to 24 credits in approved subjects. The law school operates a summer program in Dublin and Belfast and SKKU in South Korea. The noncredit Academic Enrichment Program provides training in briefing cases, study strategies, and exam-taking techniques. The school contributes to the CLEO program. The Student Bar Association funds several student-run minority organizations. Public service programs include a nonlegal community service project; advocacy projects for battered women, low-income tenants, and unemployed individuals; and student-funded fellowships for summer work at public interest organizations. The most widely taken electives are Income Taxation, New York Practice, and Evidence.
To earn the J.D., candidates must complete 83 total credits, of which 39 are for required courses. They must maintain a minimum GPA of 1.9 in the required courses. The following first-year courses are required of all students: Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Contracts, Criminal Justice, Legal Process, Legal Writing and Research, Property, and Torts. Required upper-level courses consist of Corporations and Partnerships and Professional Responsibility. The required orientation program for first-year students is a 2-day general orientation program and a 1-week legal process course. There are separate orientation programs for legal writing, library use, career planning, university resources, and clinical programs.
To graduate, candidates must have a GPA of 1.9 and have completed the upper-division writing requirement.
Some figures and information in the above capsule and in this profile are from an earlier year. In a recent first-year class, 6866 applied, 1493 were accepted, and 483 enrolled. Twenty-six transfers enrolled. The median LSAT percentile of a recent first-year class was 93; the median GPA was 3.56 on a scale of 4.0. The lowest LSAT percentile accepted was 62; the highest was 99.
Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree and take the LSAT. The most important admission factors include LSAT results, GPA, and general background. No specific undergraduate courses are required. Candidates are not interviewed.
The application deadline for fall entry is June 30. Applicants should submit an application form, LSAT results, transcripts, TOEFL if the student is from a non-English-speaking country, a nonrefundable application fee of $70, and a personal statement. LSAT results and transcripts should be submitted through LSDAS. Notification of the admissions decision is 6 to 8 weeks after the application is complete. The latest acceptable LSAT test date for fall entry is February. The law school uses the LSDAS.
About 78% of a recent year’s law students received some form of aid. The average annual amount of aid from all sources combined, including scholarships, loans, and work contracts, was $31,340; maximum, $56,120. Most awards are based on need; approximately 10% are based on merit. Required financial statement is the FAFSA. Check with the school for current deadlines. Special funds for minority or disadvantaged students include funds contributed by benefactors of the school. Also, some funds are specifically allocated to assist these groups. First-year students are notified about their financial aid application after acceptance, when their file is complete.
About 47% of the student body are women; 26%, minorities; 6%, African American; 11%, Asian American; 8%, Hispanic; and 1%, Native American. The majority of students come from the Northeast (73%). The average age of entering students is 24; age range is 20 to 52. About 31% of students enter directly from undergraduate school, 19% have a graduate degree, and 50% have worked full-time prior to entering law school. About 2% drop out after the first year for academic or personal reasons; 98% remain to receive a law degree.
Students edit the Fordham Law Review, Fordham Urban Law Journal, Fordham International Law Journal, Fordham Environmental Law Journal, Fordham Entertainment, Mass Media, Intellectual Property Journal, and Fordham Journal of Corporate and Financial Law. Moot court competitions include the intramural William Hughes Mulligan and the I. Maurice Wormser and the interschool Irving R. Kaufman Securities Law Competition. Teams also compete at the National Moot Court, Jessup International Law, Craven Constitutional Law, Cardozo Entertainment Law, National Trial Advocacy, National Tax, and National Products Liability competitions. There are approximately 40 student-run organizations at the law school, including the Student Bar Association, Fordham Law Women, and Stein Scholars. There are local chapters of the Federalist Society, National Lawyers Guild, BLSA, LALSA, APALSA, and Phi Alpha Delta. Campus clubs include Habitat for Humanity, Equal Justice Works, and the Sports Law Association.
The law school operates on a traditional semester basis. Courses for full-time students are offered both day and evening and must be completed within 3 years. For part-time students, courses are offered both day and evening and must be completed within 4 years. New full- and part-time students are admitted in the fall. There is an 8-week summer session. Transferable summer courses are offered.