It’s not exactly a secret that the University of Chicago’s Law School is one of the most highly-regarded and academically rigorous law programs in the entire country, with one of the most competitive acceptance rates to boot. UChicago is “invested in each and every student,” and the “excellent and responsive” administration goes above and beyond to ensure the highest level of success for every student. Students at Chicago are constantly being held to the highest standard of work and preparedness for class, but are “given full support with interesting programming/research facilities/beautiful building and library.”
The intimacy of the program (the whole law school is in one building), small class sizes, and the quarter system also make adjusting to law school easier for 1Ls. “Even in required 1L courses like contracts, which I have no natural interest in, I’m blown away by the intellect and teaching skills of our professors,” says one first-year. “That definitely makes up for the fact that we only get to choose one elective our 1L year.” Many of the 1L doctrinal classes are two quarters long (with a switch halfway between two very different professors), allowing students “to get a more comprehensive understanding of the subject and different ways of looking at it,” and once they’re in the clear of their second year, students find it easy to take classes in other departments.
The “funny and engaging” faculty is understandably incredible—“There really are no bad professors”—and the school places such a high value on the in-class experience that it “will reject a candidate who is a good scholar but bad teacher.” Professors “tolerate pretty much any viewpoint, and will respect your opinion” which “fosters a healthy discussion environment and allows people to be themselves.” The fact that their offices are in the student library makes it “incredibly easy to approach them with questions,” and “the sheer quantity of preeminent experts who are professors here is staggering.” It is “astounding how often you will do a reading and come to find that one of your professors is cited in the reading, or even that they wrote the book.” “How often are you taught by federal judges?” asks a 1L. Research librarians are also great and “always available during building hours.”
The employment rate of students is “phenomenal” and faculty members are “eager to go to bat for their students when it’s time to get clerkships/jobs.”” It seems like every week or two, we have major national firms and agencies flying people out to recruit, and almost nobody had any trouble finding a summer job,” says a 1L. Because of the strong job prospects for anyone who graduates, “there is not a lot of overt competition.” “We were given two pieces of advice during orientation: ‘Don’t talk about grades’ and ‘Don’t be a jerk,’” says a student. “People here live by that advice and it makes it a great place to be.”