Overview

Applicants
5,877
Acceptance Rate
20%
Average Undergrad GPA
3.68
Accepted Applicants Who Attend
391

Test Scores

LSAT
168 - 174

Deadlines

Application Deadlines
February 15

Application Process

Rolling Admissions
Yes

Application Fee
$85

LSDAS Service Used
Yes

Applicants accepted in terms other than fall
No

Transfer Applicants Accepted
Yes

Deferred Admission
Yes

Other Admission Factors


Selectivity Rating

Faculty Information


Students Say

Columbia Law School is “a very exciting and dynamic place.” The curriculum is very heavy on legal theory “with a dash of practical, just for show,” and the “breadth of course offerings” is staggering. There are countless centers and programs specializing in everything from law, media, and the arts to European legal studies to tax policy to gender and sexuality law. “Getting on a journal is remarkably noncompetitive.” “Being in New York affords the opportunity to participate in almost any internship you could imagine.” Programs in international law and intellectual property law are reportedly excellent. Columbia is also “a corporate lawyer factory” and the “best place in the country for budding transactional lawyers.” Public interest law is yet another strong suit here. Students who are involved are “a bit clique-ish” but, if you are in the clique, you’ll have access to a wealth of opportunities as well as a tremendously generous loan repayment assistance program.
The “unbelievable,” “unmatched” faculty at Columbia is “amazing” “across the board.” “Columbia does a good job mixing the young, relatable rising superstars with older, more practiced professors.” Virtually all of them “make class interesting,” and “they’re the number-one reason to come to CLS (besides the prestige, of course).” Professors also “make a huge effort to be approachable” and “are happy to give career-related advice or answer questions.” The administration isn’t as beloved. Happier students note that there are some “really caring people” on staff. However, the general sentiment seems to be that management is somewhat “disdainful.”
When the time comes to find a real job, “employment prospects are unbeatable and the alumni network is extraordinarily strong.” Career Services is “very helpful in offering support in a variety of capacities.” Columbia boasts a “high placement rate in big law firms” and “the opportunities for working in prestigious government and sought-after public interest positions are unparalleled.” “It’s Columbia,” candidly explains a 2L. “The name buys you a lot.” About the only complaint we hear is the contention that “the employment focus is a little too New York–centric.”
The facilities here are far from great. “Everything is very modern” and “the building is serviceable and clean, but it is ugly.” Classrooms “aren’t terribly comfortable,” and “They’re not as pretty as what you’ll find at other Ivy League law schools.” “The library is one of the best in the country” as far as the resources on offer are concerned, but its aesthetic “is absolutely hideous,” says an appalled 2L.

Career overview

Pass Rate for First-Time Bar Exam
96%
Median Starting Salary
$180,000
% of graduates who are employed within ten months of graduation
98%
% of job accepting graduates providing useable salary information
100%

Career Services

On campus summer employment recruitment for first year JD students
Yes

On campus summer employment recruitment for second year JD students
Yes

# of Employers that Recruit on Campus Each Year
750

Employers who most frequently hire graduates
Large international corporate law firms, federal judges, federal government agencies, and public interest organizations.

Graduates Employed by Area

6%
Judicial Clerkships

Graduates Employed by Region

75%
Mid-Atlantic

Prominent Alumni

Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Justice/U.S. Supreme Court

Brad Meltzer
Author

Brad Smith
Executive VP and General Council, Microsoft

Sheena Wright
President/CEO of United Way

Eric Holder
Attorney General of the United States

Dates

Financial Aid Rating
Mar 1
Application Deadlines
Apr 1

Financial Aid Statistics

Average Annual Total Aid Package Awarded
$47,449

% Students Receiving Some Aid
75%

Direct Lender
Yes

Expenses per Academic Year

Estimated On-Campus Room and Board
$21,738
Estimated Cost for Books / Academic Expense
$1,575

Student Body Profile

Total Enrollment
1,234
Parent Institution Enrollement
30,304

Number of Foreign Countries Represented
45
Average Age at Entry
24

% International
11%

Demographics

32.00%
% Under-represented Minorities

100% are full time
0% are part time
48% female
52% male

Campus Life

Students Say

The population of future lawyers at Columbia is “extremely diverse,” generally young, and “quite national.” Students describe this place as “a nerd paradise,” full of “geniuses” who are “brilliant and accomplished but surprisingly cool.” “There are spoiled brats, and awkward types, and public interest people, and friendly people, and inflated egos, and social people,” reports a 3L. A few students say there is a “divide between students of different economic and academic” backgrounds. However, many others insist that personal circumstances don’t matter at all. “There isn’t any sort of conspicuous divide between the student body on socioeconomic or geographic factors until you realize that most of the Ivy kids are terrible at beer pong,” quips a 1L.
Academically, “There is an atmosphere of [intensity] here.” Students are “constantly assessing how they stack up, which feeds into the collective neurosis.” Some students assert that the struggle for top grades is pretty brutal. “People in general are not happy to share notes,” claims a 2L. “They are, in fact, very secretive about their notes.” “Our reputation for gunning, competitive jerks is unfortunately true for about 5 percent of the class,” laments a 1L. Other students tell us, “People are extremely generous about sharing their outlines and studying together.” “If you miss a class,” they say, “your neighbors will e-mail you their notes without you even asking.”
Columbia’s location in a “safe, relatively quiet” neighborhood on Manhattan’s Upper West Side provides few distractions when you are trying to study. When students put down their casebooks, though, they can take advantage of a “vibrant student community.” “You’ll be happy socially here unless you are a complete tool,” promises a 2L. “Everyone is fairly involved in all sorts of organizations.” “There are multiple lunch events every day, and there’s some sort of lecture or panel or firm event with dinner almost every evening.” There are “plenty of students who want to party like it’s college,” too, and “no shortage of happy hours.” Living in the Big Apple is also a massive plus. “It’s hard to explain the type of magnetic force this place can be unless you’ve lived here and worked here,” reflects a 1L. “New York City means students can do anything they please (with the free hours they have).”

More Information

% of Classrooms with Internet Access
100%

Admissions Office Contact

Contact
Nkonye Iwerebon
Dean of Admissions

Address
435 West 116th Street, Box A-3
New York, NY 10027

Phone
212-854-2674

Email
admissions@law.columbia.edu