Willamette University, Students at the Mill Stream

College of Law News

Willamette jumps to second place among "best value" private law schools in the country

For the second year in a row, the College of Law was ranked among the nation's "Best Value Law Schools" by PreLaw magazine. This time, the College jumped to second place among the nation's 107 private law schools.

Of the 199 public and private law schools accredited by the ABA, only 59 qualified for this ranking and most of them are public law schools. Of those 59, only one private law school (Brigham Young) ranked ahead of Willamette. Two others private schools received the same grade. All other private law schools in the Pacific Northwest ranked below Willamette.

To qualify for ranking, law schools must have a bar passage rate higher than the state average; average student indebtedness of less than $100,000; and an employment rate of 85 percent or higher for students nine months after they graduate.

Willamette's bar passage rate was 6.67 percentage points higher than the Oregon state average. This places Willamette within the top 20 law schools on the "Best Value" list in bar passage. Among the Pacific Northwest law schools, only the University of Washington ranks as well as Willamette.

"This ranking simply confirms what we have always known," said Dean Symeon Symeonides, "namely, that Willamette provides a first-rate legal education without charging an exorbitant price, and that a law school's value does not depend on pre-admission credentials but rather on the post-admission work of students and faculty. I am proud of both."

Dean Symeonides receives honor from American Society of Comparative Law

Dean Symeon SymeonidesDean Symeon Symeonides was elected honorary president of the American Society of Comparative law after serving as the Society's president of four years, vice president for four years and secretary of eight years.

The Society awarded him a commemorative plaque noting his "extraordinary leadership" and his "numerous contributions to comparative law and private international law."

While serving as the Society's president, Symeonides hosted the 18th Quadrennial International Congress of Comparative Law, held in Washington, D.C. July 25 to Aug. 1. More than 500 delegates from 55 countries attended the event.

During the conference, Symeonides was elected president of the Common Law Group of the International Academy of Comparative Law, which includes the United States and all countries whose law derives from English common law. He also was re-elected as vice president of the International Association of Legal Science.