The University of San Francisco School of Law (USF Law) is the American Bar Association (ABA) approved law school of the private University of San Francisco. Established in 1912, the law school has approximately 700 students. It received ABA approval in 1935. It joined the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) in 1937.
University of San Francisco School of Law: Introduction -
In February 2012, USF Law was named as the defendant in a class action lawsuit alleging deceptive reporting of employment data to prospective students. According to the complaint, USF Law's material misrepresentations include job placement rates and salary data published in its "Viewbook" for prospective students.
The University of San Francisco School of Law's Koret Law Center occupies two buildings on the 55-acre (220,000Â m2) hilltop USF campus overlooking Golden Gate Park, the Pacific Ocean and downtown San Francisco.
For fall 2013 admitted students, the median LSAT scores were 153 and the median GPA was 3.28. The majority of the class admitted in 2013 has LSAT scores in the 56th percentile or higher. Following the 2012-2013 academic year, 26.9% of first year students left USF Law in academic (26 students) and non-academic (33 students) attrition.
USF offers full and part-time programs leading to the J.D. degree. Students can also enroll in the J.D./M.B.A. program which takes four years of study. J.D. students can also receive certificates at graduation in Public Interest Law, Intellectual Property and International Law. USF also offers a Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree program in Comparative Law and International Transactions for foreign lawyers who have first degrees in law from a non-American university as well as an LL.M. in Intellectual Property and Technology law for foreign and American lawyers.
In 2015, the U.S. News & World Report placed USF Law 138th in the United States.
In 2010, Super Lawyers U.S. Law School Rankings placed USF Law 62nd in the United States.
USF Law was listed with a "B+" in the March 2011 "Diversity Honor Roll" by The National Jurist: The Magazine for Law Students.
Bar passage rates
February and July 2012 California Bar passage rates for USF test takers were 66.7% compared to the state average of 71.43%.
Based on a 2001-2007 6 year average, 70.3% of University of San Francisco Law graduates passed the California State Bar.
According to the University of San Francisco School of Law's official 2013 ABA-required disclosures, 34% of the Class of 2013 obtained full-time, long-term, JD-required employment nine months after graduation, excluding solo-practitioners. The University of San Francisco School of Law's Law School Transparency under-employment score is 41.5%, indicating the percentage of the Class of 2013 unemployed, pursuing an additional degree, or working in a non-professional, short-term, or part-time job nine months after graduation.
Employment Outcomes: According to the law professor blog, The Faculty Lounge, based on 2012 ABA data, only 22.6% of graduates obtained full-time, long term positions requiring bar admission (i.e., jobs as lawyers), 9 months after graduation, ranking 196th out of 197 law schools.
As of 2014, the University of San Francisco School of Law does not publish an average salary for recent graduates.
Based on a 2001-2007 6 year average, 92.3% of University of San Francisco Law graduates were employed in some capacity (including part-time, short-term, non-legal jobs) 9 months after graduation.
The total cost of attendance (indicating the cost of tuition, fees, and living expenses) at the University of San Francisco School of Law for the 2014-2015 academic year is $75,302. The Law School Transparency estimated debt-financed cost of attendance for three years is $266,638.
According to U.S. News & World Report, the average indebtedness of 2013 graduates who incurred law school debt was $146,919 (not including undergraduate debt), and 89% of 2013 graduates took on debt. This information should be considered in light of the fact that only 22.6% of 2012 graduates obtained full-time, long term positions requiring bar admission (i.e., jobs as lawyers) within 9 months after graduation.
The Law School has several school-sponsored publications in which students can participate. The Maritime Law Journal is one of two journals devoted to maritime law in the country and is subscribed to by the United States Supreme Court.
- University of San Francisco Law Review
- Intellectual Property Law Bulletin
- USF Maritime Law Journal
- Journal of Law and Social Challenges
USF sponsors student groups encompassing a wide range of interests, which reflects the diversity and drive of the student body. The various organizations sponsor lectures from notable attorneys and judges as well as a Last Lecture series highlighting the outstanding scholarship of the faculty. In addition, the Public Interest Law Foundation holds an annual auction, drawing lawyers, judges and other community members in support of the school's commitment to public service.
Institutes, centers and special projects
USF sponsors a range of institutes, centers and special projects. Those with an international focus include the Center for Law and Global Justice which develops and implements international rule of law projects. In addition USF sponsors study abroad programs for its students in Prague, Dublin and Budapest. The exchange programs include instruction at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland and Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic. Relevant international coursework includes the study of European Community Law, International Business Transactions, and European Constitutionalism. The latter has been taught by the late prof. Vojtech Cepl, the principal drafter of the post-communist Constitution of the Czech Republic. Following his role in the Velvet Revolution of 1989, Mr. Cepl was nominated a justice of the Czech Constitutional Court and briefly participated as an advisor in post-war Iraq.
USF is also home to the McCarthy Institute for Intellectual Property and Technology Law, the Internet and Intellectual Property Justice Project, which provides legal assistance to those in need of intellectual property advice, and Picturing Justice, which focuses on images of law in film and television.
In addition, USF hosts programs designed specifically for students such as the Keta Taylor Colby Death Penalty Project, which places students in the South working on death penalty appeals. Students can also participate in the Intensive Advocacy Program, which brings students from a variety of law schools and places them in an intensive trial advocacy class featuring notable local practitioners as teachers.
The school also provides ongoing mentoring through its chapter of Inn of Court. The USF chapter is the American Inn.
Dorraine Zief Law Library
In 2000, the law school doubled in size when the new Dorraine Zief Law Library opened. Three years later, the law school's main classroom and administration building, Kendrick Hall, reopened after an extensive renovation. The library is also frequented by students of other local law schools, attesting to its comfort and functionality. The staff of the law library maintain a web site with useful information tailored to the needs of law students, practitioners and other legal researchers at http://www.usfca.edu/law_library.
- J. Thomas McCarthy, author of McCarthy on Trademarks and Unfair Competition
- John Jay Osborn, Jr., author of The Paper Chase
- John D. TrasviÃ±a, dean, former assistant secretary of fair housing at HUD and president of MALDEF
- Angela Alioto (1983), civil rights attorney and former President of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors
- John Burton, former Member of Congress and former California Senate Majority Leader, current chairman of the California Democratic Party
- Cupcake Brown, author and a lawyer, wrote A Piece of Cake
- Kimberly Guilfoyle, former assistant San Francisco district attorney, Fox News television personality
- Michael Hennessey (1973), long-serving Sheriff of the City and County of San Francisco (1980â"2012)
- Edward Imwinkelried, Evidence Scholar and Professor at UC Davis School of Law
- Frederick J. Kenney, Judge Advocate General of the United States Coast Guard
- Susan C. Lee, Maryland State Senator, Maryland State Senate
- Mark Massara, Director of The Sierra Club Coastal Programs
- Kevin V. Ryan, former United States Attorney for the Northern District of California
- Marjorie Scardino (1975), CEO of Pearson PLC, and the first woman to head a top 100 firm on the London Stock Exchange
- John F. Shelley, former Mayor of San Francisco, and member of U.S. House of Representatives
- Sal Torres (1988), Councilman and Mayor of Daly City, California (1996 - ), former host of "El Amanecer (Daybreak)", KBHK-TV, and Managing Corporate Counsel & Director at Marvell Technology Group
Notable alumni sitting judges
- Ming Chin, Supreme Court Justice of the California Supreme Court
- Mary Jane Theis, Supreme Court Justice of the Illinois Supreme Court
- Saundra Armstrong, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California
- Martin Jenkins, First District Court of Appeal (formerly of the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California)
- Bill Schuette, former Member of Congress and current Michigan Attorney General, former Judge of the Michigan Court of Appeals
- Official website