The Catholic University of America


CUA Law Comments on the Latest U.S. News Rankings

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Catholic University’s Columbus School of Law is ranked #110 among law schools in the U.S. News & World Report 2019 Best Graduate Schools rankings, released on March 20, 2018. The new ranking is a disappointing four-place decrease from last year's rankings, although CUA Law has remained in the same narrow seven-place range during each of the past five years. As last year, CUA Law’s score is just shy of the overall score assigned to the schools that are ranked #100 or higher. More positively, U.S. News ranks our part-time J.D. program at #30.

As in past years, U.S. News shows CUA Law with a much higher assessment score by practicing lawyers and judges than our assessment score by academic professors at other law schools. This undoubtedly reflects the strong performance of our students and graduates in the real world of law practice. Compared to last year, U.S. News shows CUA Law with an improved bar passage rate and a more favorable student/faculty ratio. But these positives are offset by slight downturns in the selectivity of our acceptance rate and employment placement rates. Other scores — for matriculating students’ undergraduate G.P.A. and LSAT score ranges — remain comparable to last year.

"While closely watched, the U.S. News' rankings do not fully capture the essence of what we call the CUA Law Advantage. Our Law School excels in offering a first-rate legal education that is practical, focused, and connected," said Daniel F. Attridge, Dean and Knights of Columbus Professor of Law at Catholic University’s Law School. "At CUA Law, our students learn by doing in classes, clinics, and externships that emphasize practical skills for the real world of practice. Our students can focus on different legal specialties to gain enhanced expertise, while being challenged by our mission that promotes service to others. And our students are connected in an ideal Washington, D.C. location with small classes, committed professors, a collegial student body, and an active alumni network."

As examples of CUA Law's strong educational value and its graduates' exceptional performance in the real world of practice, the dean pointed to recent recognition from outside sources, including:

PreLaw magazine rated CUA Law #5 in their list of best schools in the country for public defender/prosecutor careers.

American Bar Association ranks CUA Law #14 for the highest percent of 2016 graduates in government and public interest jobs.

American Lawyer survey of midlevel associates ranks CUA Law in the top 15 for preparation for firm practice.

Study ranks CUA Law 26th nationally as one of the best schools for associates obtaining Big Law jobs.

LAW.COM study ranks CUA Law #38 for associate jobs at the Top 100 firms in the country.

“Regardless of whether CUA Law moves up or down in the latest U.S. News rankings, we will remain a top-notch law school with the same unshakeable commitment to excellence," said Dean Attridge. “Our innovative educational programs ensure that our graduates will remain among the most practice-ready, career-focused, and best-connected lawyers in the nation. As alumni, our graduates will continue to outperform whatever expectations may be forecasted by our U.S. News' ranking."