State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus
State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law campus

From the School

A public law school, UB School of Law was founded in 1887 by a dozen members of the bench and bar who set out to change the landscape of legal education in Western New York. What is now known as the “Buffalo Model” of law school instruction took root in the 1970s and focused on the multidisciplinary ethos of the school and the increasing complexity of law practice that continues today. The current emphasis on hands-on learning and practical skills has a long provenance at UB School of Law, and a special place in that history belongs to our clinical program. Several of our clinics have drawn national and international recognition for their work.


From The School

Our admission process is selective and based on both quantitative and qualitative criteria. In addition to an applicant’s LSAT score and undergraduate GPA, the Admissions Committee considers other non-numerical factors in reaching its decisions. These factors include achievement and participation in activities that indicate a high level of probability of scholastic excellence, and intellectual contributions that indicate a potential for contributing to the enrichment of the law school community.

Acceptance Rate
Average Undergrad GPA
Accepted Applicants Who Attend

Test Scores

150 - 157


Application Deadlines
March 1

Application Process

Rolling Admissions

Application Fee

LSDAS Service Used

Applicants accepted in terms other than fall

Transfer Applicants Accepted

Deferred Admission

Other Admission Factors


LSAT Score
Undergraduate GPA
Letters of Recommendation
Essay / Personal Statement

Selectivity Rating


From The School

Degrees Offered

We offer the following degree programs: Juris Doctor; Advanced–Standing Two-Year Juris Doctor for Internationally-Trained Lawyers; General LLM; Criminal Law LLM; and the Cross-Border LLM (pending approval).

Programs and Curriculum

UB School of Law offers a full-time program with some courses offered in the evening. We do not offer any online classes or part-time programs. The academic program is broadly clustered around three areas: The First Year, Experiential Learning and Legal Skills.

During your first year in law school, you will take doctrinal courses that teach you the foundation of legal study and train you to think like a lawyer. Our small classes and one-on-one coaching through our Legal Analysis, Writing and Research program ensure that you will get the attention you need to excel.

Experiential learning opportunities include our clinical programs, practica, externships and judicial clerkships, moot courts, mock trials, law journals, our New York City Program on Finance and Law, and pro bono and Access to Justice initiatives. Our experiential learning programs and our strong ties within the legal community give you the opportunity to learn by doing.

Legal skills are critically important to the practice of law. You will spend a lot of time perfecting your writing skills including three semesters of intensive instruction on organizing your thoughts, crafting an argument and writing clearly and persuasively. You’ll learn how to prepare and try a civil or criminal case by participating in our Advocacy Institute or competing in one of our national moot court competitions. Several opportunities exist for international study led by our faculty, or through our study abroad programs in Barcelona, Spain and Glasgow, Scotland. Our curricular concentrations and programs allow you to study a specific area of law in depth, distinguishing you as someone with an unusual level of knowledge and mastery in a particular field.

Faculty Information

Total Faculty


Students Say

SUNY Buffalo Law School is a practical and affordable option for future New York State lawyers. The school’s three-year JD begins with a series of required classes in contracts, torts, and other basic areas. In the next two years, law students have the “ability to create a unique curriculum” through a “nice array of courses,” including “timely classes that are relevant to the world and cover cutting edge legal issues (examples: class on international piracy, class on counterterrorism law, etc.).” The school offers curricular concentrations in nine fields, including civil litigation and intellectual property, and students note the array of “great human rights and international law classes.” While they like the course diversity, many Buffalo students feel the school could dig even deeper into specialty topics and “incorporate more courses which teach practical lawyering skills in specific areas of the law.” Fortunately, curricular improvements are being implemented with attention and efficiency. “The current administration is making a concerted effort to improve the look of the school and the opportunities available to students.” In addition, many students praise the schools’ supervisors and staff and attest, “School administrators seem to genuinely care about you from the moment you step in the door all the way up to graduation and beyond.”
Buffalo offers “plenty of opportunity to get hands-on experience in legal jobs during law school.” Traditional academics are augmented by “diverse opportunities for experiential learning,” including “non-traditional course offerings like clinics and externships.” Within the law school, “there are countless opportunities for moot court, trial team, and journal work,” and “the law school’s clinic program is excellent.” Of particular note, “the school goes out of its way to help those interested in Public Interest work,” with numerous clinics devoted to affordable housing, community economic advocacy, and social justice. Over 50 percent of each graduating class works in private practice. Even so, some would also like to see the school build a “stronger presence in the greater Buffalo community,” and point out the campus’s isolated location in a northern suburb of the city. The events and culture generated from having over 24,000 undergraduate and graduate students on Buffalo’s campus should not be discounted, though.
When it comes to the teaching staff, students praise Buffalo’s “terrific adjunct professors,” saying they love being taught by “faculty members who are still trying cases, rather than those who have been out of court for years.” The school attracts a number of accomplished attorneys, and “some of the faculty [are] at the very pinnacle of their fields, with reputations that span the country.” A current student enthuses, “On multiple occasions, my professors have actually worked on the cases we cover in class.” Despite their many accolades, “faculty is hit or miss” in the classroom. Because SUNY is a “great research institution,” it tends to attract “professors that are experts in their field with a significant amount of publishing in their background, but have no teaching skills and no ability to relate to the students.” Outside of the classroom, teachers are diverse in the same manner. Some professors are friendly and student-oriented, while others “are not always accessible because they are busy.”
Buffalo is a great choice for local lawyers, and the school maintains a great “reputation in New York, particularly in western New York.” For many local students, cost was also a major factor in their decision to attend SUNY Buffalo. New York state residents not surprisingly, comprise more than 90 percent of the school’s population, but the Law School offers competitive scholarships for qualified applicants whether in-state or out-of-state residents.

Career overview

Pass Rate for First-Time Bar Exam
Median Starting Salary
% of graduates who are employed within ten months of graduation
% of job accepting graduates providing useable salary information

Career Services

On campus summer employment recruitment for first year JD students

On campus summer employment recruitment for second year JD students

# of Employers that Recruit on Campus Each Year

Employers who most frequently hire graduates
HSBC Bank, NYS Senate/Assembly, M & T Bank, Hogan Willig PLLC, Bond, Schoeneck & King, LLP, Bronx County District Attorney, City of Buffalo Law Department, Barclay Damon LLP, Empire Justice Center, Erie County District Attorney's Office, Gibson McAskill & Crosby, LLP, Hamberger & Weiss, Harris Beach, LLP, Harter Secrest & Emery, Hodgson Russ, LLP, Hurwitz & Fine, PC, Jaeckle Fleischmann & Mugel, Kings County District Attorney, Legal Aid Bureau of Buffalo, Inc., Lippes Mathias Wexler Friedman, LLP, Lipsitz Green Scime Cambria LLP, Monroe County District Attorney's Office, Neighborhood Legal Services, Inc., New York City Law Department, New York State Court of Appeals, Nixon Peabody, LLP, NYS Appellate Div, 3rd Dept, NYS Appellate Div, 4th Dept, Phillips Lytle LLP, Ropes & Gray, Rupp Baase Pfalzgraf, Cunningham & Coppola LLC, U.S. Dept of Justice, US Air Force JAG, US Army JAG, US Marine Corps JAG, US Navy JAG, Woods Oviatt Gilman, LLP, First Niagara, Citigroup, Liberty Mutual

Graduates Employed by Area

Private Practice
Public Interes

Graduates Employed by Region


Prominent Alumni

Hon. Julio M. Fuentes '75
US Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit

Mark G. Pearce '78
Chairman of the National Labor Relations Board

Hon. Eugene F. Pigott '73
New York State Court of Appeals

Robert C. Schwenkel '82
Managing Partner and Chair of Corporate Department at Fried Frank, NYC Office

Vikki L. Pryor '78
Principle, Change Create Transform


From The School

The cost of attendance for the 2016-2017 academic year for in-state residents is $49,172.00 including tuition, room, board and fees. Non-New York state residents pay $66,442.00. After living in the state for 12 months, domestic non-New York state residents can apply for in-state residency thus lowering their tuition to the in-state rate in years two and three of law school.

Competitive scholarships are available to all of our students in addition to federal loans. Seventy-three percent of our first year students receive a merit scholarship.


Financial Aid Rating
Mar 1
Application Deadlines
Mar 15

Financial Aid Statistics

Average Annual Total Aid Package Awarded

% Students Receiving Some Aid

Direct Lender

Expenses per Academic Year

In-State Tuition
Out-Of-State Tuition
Estimated Off-Campus Room and Board
Estimated Cost for Books / Academic Expense


From The School

Student life is vibrant at the law school with over 40 clubs and student groups to choose from. Our student groups give you an opportunity to gain new skills, and contribute your time and talent in ways that are both personally and professionally gratifying. Student clubs range from the Buffalo Public Interest Law Group to Buffalo Law Review.

Student Body Profile

Total Enrollment
Parent Institution Enrollement

Number of Foreign Countries Represented
Average Age at Entry

% Out-of-State
% International


% Under-represented Minorities

98% are full time
2% are part time
49% female
51% male

Campus Life

Students Say

Students seeking a “serious, but not overly competitive environment” will find a good match at SUNY Buffalo, where academic rigors are balanced by a “strong sense of community and camaraderie among the students.” Most students are serious about their education and “come ready to work every day.” However, that sense of purpose never overrides the generally low-key and friendly atmosphere within the law school. A current student elaborates, “While we are all competitive, there is a "no 1L left behind," feeling to all of the classes. If you are having trouble with the material there are always countless students willing to sit down and thoroughly discuss the material until you grasp it.” Both socially and professionally, the collegial atmosphere pays off. Here, “networking is easy at UB because everyone is already your friend.”
Within the law school, there are “myriad, valuable student organizations.” Socially, one student proclaims, “There are always SO many events going on, it is literally impossible to keep up,” especially since the law school is located on the University at Buffalo campus with an enrollment of over 24,000. In contrast, there isn’t much happening in the surrounding area. Located in “suburban hell,” campus is north of Buffalo proper with“nothing in walking distance. You have to drive everywhere to get or do anything.” Not only is “there is no ‘college town’ feel,” students remind us that “the heart of Buffalo's legal community, including the state and federal courthouses and the major law firms, remains in downtown Buffalo.”

More Information

% of Classrooms with Internet Access

Admissions Office Contact

From The School

Campus and Location

The University at Buffalo School of Law is located on 1,192 acres of land in suburban Amherst, N.Y. on the State University of New York at Buffalo (UB)’s North Campus. With an enrollment of nearly 30,000, UB is the largest and most comprehensive campus in the SUNY system. The School of Law is situated approximately 11 miles northeast of downtown Buffalo, and 19 miles southeast of Niagara Falls. Within a 500-mile radius of Niagara Falls resides 55 percent of the population of the United States and 62 percent of the population of Canada including major metropolitan areas such as Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Detroit, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, New York City and Boston.

The greater Buffalo area offers a wide variety of social, athletic and cultural activities such as downhill skiing, water sports, professional sports, a world-class symphony orchestra and art gallery, theaters, nightlife and access to Canada, all within minutes of the law school.


UB School of Law is housed in John Lord O’Brian Hall on the University at Buffalo’s North Campus. The Charles B. Sears Law Library and the Francis M. Letro Courtroom are both located in the law school. In addition, several research centers support the scholarly work of our faculty and host interdisciplinary lectures for the university community. Exclusive law student space is also available on campus including a recently renovated student lounge on the first floor of O’Brian Hall. Abundant green spaces complement the 125 building campus including Lake LaSalle and Letchworth Woods.

Lillie V. Wiley-Upshaw
Vice Dean for Admissions and Student Life

309 O'Brian Hall
Buffalo, NY 14260



Rankings & Lists

From State University of New York—University at Buffalo - School of Law

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