Santa Clara University - School of Law campus


Acceptance Rate
Average Undergrad GPA
Accepted Applicants Who Attend

Test Scores

156 - 160


Application Deadlines
February 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
Essay / Personal Statement

Selectivity Rating


Faculty Information

Total Faculty


Students Say

Jesuit-affiliated Santa Clara University School of Law “in the heart of Silicon Valley” is a smaller school that manages to offer “a wide range” of courses across a host of legal areas. As you would expect given the location, Santa Clara Law boasts “one of the top-ranking high-tech programs in the nation.” The course work in patent and intellectual property law is “tremendous,” and students regularly intern with “the vast array” of existing mammoth corporations as well as the next generation of mammoth corporations here “in the venture-capital capital of the country.” The international law program is also extensive and “incredible.” Study abroad opportunities are mind-blowing. There are a dozen different programs in twenty cities around the globe including—just to cite a few—Istanbul, Budapest, and Shanghai. In addition, there are several unique international judicial externships and international internships available. Still another perk here is the prominent focus on public interest and social justice law. SCU is teeming with institutes, centers, and programs that allow students to do “great things for people.”
“Real-world experience” is one of the hallmarks of the professors at Santa Clara Law. “Some are brilliant savants, but you just can’t learn from them.” On the whole, though, faculty members are “top-notch,” “dedicated to teaching,” and “obviously committed to their students.” Professors are “approachable” as well. They “really engage students” outside of class” “about their past experiences and future hopes.” Administratively, lower-level staff can be “somewhat surly,” and sometimes the decisions of the top brass “leave much to be desired,” but the general consensus is that management is “extremely accommodating” and “very concerned with student feedback.” “It would be difficult to find another law school that cares so much about [its] students and actually does something about it,” beams a 1L.
Santa Clara’s lush, “peaceful” campus is “simply gorgeous and kept very nicely.” It’s also home to some “great facilities.” The law school facilities are pretty mundane, though. “The classrooms are classrooms,” says a 3L. The law library is “certainly adequate,” but it’s “fairly depressing.” It’s “dark, and the temperature controls suck.” On the bright side, the undergrad library “right next door” is “incredibly awesome,” and it’s a regular haunt for law students.
Santa Clara has a stellar reputation in the Bay Area, and career prospects are solid. More than 80 percent of all newly minted graduates head off to the private sector, where median starting salaries are very impressive. Quite a few students take jobs in Silicon Valley. San Francisco is another common destination. Santa Clara Law’s “very accessible, passionate, successful, and helpful alumni network” is a huge advantage when students are looking for work. They are “very willing to give back to the school and provide advice and opportunities to current students.” “Sometimes it feels like the entire community of attorneys in the South Bay graduated from Santa Clara,” explains a 3L, “especially when it comes to district attorneys, public defenders, and judges.” The alumni base and the SCU brand name aren’t as strong nationally, though. “Nobody knows about it outside of the San Francisco area,” laments another 3L.

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
Blakely, Sokoloff, Taylor and Zafman LLP; Cisco Systems, Inc.; Ropes & Gray LLP;DLA Piper; Fenwick & West LLP; Intel Corporation; Jones Day; Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP; Morrison & Foerster LLP; Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP; Perkins Coie LLP; Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP; PricewaterhouseCoopers; Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; McDermott Will & Emery LLP; Cooley LLP

Graduates Employed by Area

Graduates Employed by Region

Prominent Alumni

Leon Panetta
Political Leader

Zoe Lofgren
Congresswoman, U.S. House of Representatives

Sam O'Rourke
Deputy General Counsel, Intellectual Property at Facebook

Dorian Daley
General Counsel, Oracle

Robert Durham
Oregon Supreme Court Associate Justice


Financial Aid Rating
Feb 1

Financial Aid Statistics

Average Annual Total Aid Package Awarded

% Students Receiving Some Aid

Direct Lender

Expenses per Academic Year

Estimated On-Campus Room and Board
Estimated Off-Campus Room and Board
Estimated Cost for Books / Academic Expense

Student Body Profile

Total Enrollment
Parent Institution Enrollement

Number of Foreign Countries Represented
Average Age at Entry

% International


% Under-represented Minorities

79% are full time
21% are part time
47% female
53% male

Campus Life

Students Say

“The school’s location allows it to attract a diverse group of highly educated students.” In terms of ethnicity, Santa Clara Law is among the most diverse schools in the country. “Varying ages,” radically different life experiences, and a solid geographic distribution also make for “a good mix.” Academically, a few students “are jerks and should be quarantined,” but “there usually is a positive vibe around the school.” “It is a very welcoming environment that engenders very happy students.” “We’re a social tribe,” explains a 1L. “We might be graded on a curve but you’d never know it from how everyone treats each other.”
“Student life is collaborative.” “There’s a club or society for everything under the sun.” “Stimulating” speakers including local corporate bigwigs are frequent, and “The school makes a real effort to engage its alumni and host events where students can meet them.” “Social activities and opportunities for students to get together” are also commonplace. “We study hard, but we also go out a lot on the weekends and form some close-knit friendships,” says a 3L. The cost of living in Silicon Valley is very high, and the city of Santa Clara is “decidedly not a college town.” The locale is “green and sunny most of the year,” though, and the Bay Area offers quite a bit to do. When students need a break from their casebooks or law school in general, heading up to San Francisco is pretty common.

More Information

% of Classrooms with Internet Access

Admissions Office Contact

Bryan L. Hinkle
Assistant Dean for Enrollment Management

500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053-0435