Paul L. Caron

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Law Grads Hiring Report: Job Stats For The Class Of 2020

Karen Sloan (, Law Grads Hiring Report: Job Stats for the Class of 2020:

Considering that a global pandemic rendered a massive blow to the economy just as they wrapped up their legal studies, the J.D. class of 2020 did surprisingly well on the entry-level job market. The latest figures from the American Bar Association show that the percentage of recent graduates who landed full-time, long-term jobs that require bar passage within 10 months of leaving campus was 70%. That’s down from 72% the previous year—which was a historic high—but the decline was not nearly as much as many legal educators feared.

Those aggregate numbers don’t provide a full picture of what happened at individual law schools, and where graduates did—and didn’t—find work. has dug through the trove of jobs data released this month by the ABA to break down how each law school performed in 10 different areas.

We’ve ranked schools according to the percentage of 2020 J.D.s in bar passage-required jobs (the University of Chicago Law School edged Columbia Law School out of the top spot in that category this year); the percentage of grads in federal clerkships (again, Chicago unseated Stanford Law School there); and jobs at large law firms (Columbia retained its No. 1 position.)

Karen Sloan (, A Contrarian Take on the Latest Law Grad Job Numbers:

“This is basically very good news. And much better news than I personally expected,” said Bernie Burk, a former professor at the University of North Carolina School of Law who studies the law job market. “That this segment of the job market did almost as well as it ever has is a reflection on the nature of law work and how little it was affected by the pandemic.” ...

I hopped on the phone with Lois Casaleggi, associate dean for career services at the University of Chicago Law School, to get her take on the new job numbers, and she was pretty much in agreement with Burk. She recalled that a year ago, she and her staff were bracing for the bottom to fall out of the legal job market. But that never happened.

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