Did I mention that I love the south? I just got back from recruiting in Atlanta last week and I’m already looking forward to going back next year! Last week I visited Morehouse College, Emory University, and attended the LSAC forum for two days.
At Morehouse I was part of a bustling outdoor community service fair. Despite some of the confusion, the setting was a great segue into talking about Chicago’s public interest offerings. We have 12 clinics including:
- Appellate Advocacy Project
- Criminal and Juvenile Justice Project
- Employment Discrimination Project
- Exoneration Project
- Housing Law Project
- Immigrant Children’s Advocacy Project
- Police Accountability Project
- Poverty and Housing Law Clinic
We also offer significant public service support in the form of funding. For example, we provide partially forgivable loans to 1Ls who want to work in government or the public interest after their first year of law school. Last year we loaned up to $6,000 per student in the program and will be forgiving $3,000 of that amount. As those of you who work in public interest know, those jobs usually don’t pay very much, so every little bit of help with living expenses makes a difference! We also have a generous loan repayment assistance program (HPIP) for alums who choose to go into public service, non-profit, or government work. For the Class of 2012, you can receive up to $10,000 per year from the Law School if you are making less than $60,000 at your public interest job.
At Emory the Pre Law Society had set up a panel of 7 schools to answer questions and discuss different parts of the application process. The event was well attended and I was so pleased with the quality of the students and their questions – not once did I have to answer what our median GPA and LSAT scores were! Even at the LSAC Forum, the questions were more substantive and the steady stream of prospective students kept me on my toes!
One difference I’ve noticed while on the road is that this year in particular, applicants are very concerned about financial aid and scholarships. Here at Chicago over half the incoming class is typically awarded scholarship funds. Our scholarships are both merit and need based and every applicant who is admitted is automatically considered for aid. To the extent that you wish to have us look at your financial need, we ask that you fill out an online Need Access form. Even for students who don’t receive scholarship aid, you are almost certain to be able to finance law school through loans, both federal and private. Law School is a big investment, but one that is well worth it, and students who graduate from Chicago have fantastic employment prospects. Our alums work all over the country and even internationally and yes, even back in Atlanta!