PHILADELPHIA - The combination of cross-disciplinary offerings, collaboration and superb schooling adds up to a job and paycheck for University of Pennsylvania law graduates.
According to the Princeton Review, Penn Law students are hired almost immediately after graduation and are paid the best salaries. The University of Pennsylvania once again has retained the top spot in law school rankings for “Best Career Prospects.”
The Review’s annual study surveyed 19,400 students across 172 law schools. They were ranked according to the percentage of graduates who are employed one year after graduation and their median salaries. The 80-question survey asked students to rate their schools on several topics and report on their experiences.
Heather Frattone, Penn Law’s associate dean for professional and student engagement, told the Pennsylvania Record that 97.6 percent of the JD Class of 2015 was employed after graduation. She cited information from the standard American Bar Association 509 Required Information Report. The median salary of these graduates is $160,000, Frattone added.
“We’re pleased our talented new graduates continue to enjoy success in the legal job market,” she said.
“Because the law touches virtually every part of our lives, we strongly believe that Penn Law’s interdisciplinary academic program, combined with professional skills training and a highly collaborative learning environment, best prepares students to be successful lawyers and leaders, wherever their career paths take them.”
She cited the Center on Professionalism at Penn Law as an example. The programs - which include organizational savvy, team dynamics and purposeful communication - prepare the students for any career and not just law, she says.
“Our Center on Professionalism, which complements Penn Law’s classroom and legal clinics offerings, (provides) an array of management and leadership programming in areas such as finance, negotiation and strategy,” Frattone said.
Because the faculty is cross-trained, students get another benefit, she said. They are also encouraged to seek out relationships with law professionals in Philadelphia.
“Our cross-disciplinary offerings include 35 joint degree and certificate programs offered in partnership with other Penn professional schools and graduate departments,” Frattone said. They include the Wharton School, the Perelman School of Medicine and Penn Engineering.
She said that according to the most recent reporting to ABA, which would be for 2015, the University of Pennsylvania had 756 JD students enrolled. There were approximately 70 full-time faculty.
In the Princeton Review’s press release announcing the annual law school rankings, it was noted that the survey asked students about their school’s academics, student body and campus life, and their career plans. On average, 112 students at each law school were surveyed for the lists’ 2017 edition. All institutional data used to tally these ranking lists was collected in 2015-16.
“The schools we selected for this guide all offer academically outstanding degrees: we recommend them highly,” said Robert Franek, SVP/publisher.
“Their program offerings vary considerably, and we salute and highlight those distinctions in our profiles. Our purpose is not to rank schools hierarchically or crown any school as ‘best’ overall. Our goal is to provide school profiles combined with multiple rating scores and ranking lists to help applicants choose the best business school for them.”