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Cornell law school graduates have been ranked first in the state in acquiring competitive job placement.

May 25, 2016

Report: Cornell Law School Demonstrates Highest Graduate Placement Rate in State

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Cornell Law School has been ranked first in successful graduate job-placement in New York State and ninth in the nation by the New York Law Journal.

Approximately 89.6 percent of Cornell’s law school graduates received full-time jobs which require a bar certification — the highest of the 15 New York law schools, according to the New York Law Journal. New York University School of Law and Columbia School of Law  had the the next highest employment rates within the state of New York placing 87.4 and 87.1 percent of graduates, respectively.

Nationally, Above the Law— a blog on news and commentary on U.S. legal industry — ranked Cornell ninth in law schools that “deliver on the promise of gainful employment,” according to its website. This ranking incorporated the American Bar Association’s employment data on the class of 2015.

These studies were conducted by “very well known publications in the legal profession” and are consistent with results in years passed, according to Dean of Cornell Law School, Prof. Eduardo M. Peñalver.

“Cornell Law School always ranks highly where the ranking methodology focuses on the issues students care most about — job placement success and faculty quality,” Peñalver said.  “This year, we continued to perform extremely well on the job placement front, both in terms the number of students employed after graduation and the quality of the jobs they obtained.”

Peñalver attributes the Law School’s success in job placement to the individual attention the career services staff can give to its relatively small class sizes.

“Cornell Law School benefits on the placement front from its small size, which allows our very talented and dedicated career services staff to devote personalized attention to students, to treat them as individuals,” Peñalver said.

According to Above the Law, because the legal job market has shrunk since the financial crisis of 2008, aspiring lawyers should consider job-placement as a priority when they are choosing which institution to attend.

“Given the steep cost of law school and the new normal of the legal job market, potential students should prioritize their future employment prospects over all other factors in deciding whether and where to attend law school,” the blog’s website said.

Peñalver emphasized that, in spite of a smaller applicant pool, the law school has “not compromised the quality of [it’s] student body,” saying employers have demonstrated an eagerness to hire Cornell law graduates.
“Employers recognize the consistent quality of our student body and are therefore willing to recruit deeper into our class,” Peñalver said. “Our students are known to be hard working and collaborative.”