KU Law School Ranks 8th Nationally for ‘Best Jobs’ Employment

LAWRENCE — Nearly 95% of University of Kansas Law School graduates of 2021 have found full-time, long-term legal employment, according to recently released data from the American Bar Association.

KU Law ranks eighth among ABA-accredited law schools nationally in the category sometimes referred to as “best jobs” – defined as full-time, long-term positions that require passing a bar exam or where a law degree is an advantage. Employment data for KU and all ABA-accredited law schools is available on the ABA website.

Overall employment for the class of 2021 was 96.9%. Compared to all ABA law schools, KU Law ranks 21st nationally for overall employment. This is the eighth consecutive year that KU Law employment has exceeded 90%, including graduates who enrolled in graduate school full-time after completing their Juris Doctor.

“We are encouraged that even in a year where the health crisis continued to weigh on our economy, our students still achieved excellent employment outcomes,” said Heather Spielmaker, vice-president. Dean of Career Services at KU Law. “High-caliber teaching and professional development guidance has helped produce competent and confident graduates, and this has clearly resonated with our employers.”

Graduates have accepted positions in law firms, corporations, government agencies, public interest organizations, and judges across the country. An analysis by the nonprofit Transparency Law School placed KU Law fourth nationally for graduates working full-time, long-term jobs in government or in the public interest. Just over 30% of graduates from the KU Law class of 2021 accepted jobs in this category. Law School Transparency ranks KU Law 19th for graduates in full-time, long-term jobs that require a law degree and are not solo practices.

Thirteen graduates obtained full-time, long-term judicial internships, including two with federal courts. KU Law is in the top quarter of law schools nationwide for percentage of graduates in internships. Two other graduates completed short internships before moving on to positions in law firms.

PreLaw Magazine recognized KU Law as one of the nation’s top schools for trial defense in its Winter 2022 issue. Rankings are based on law school advocacy curricula. At KU Law, these offerings include a Certificate in Advocacy Skills; skills simulation courses through the Shook, Hardy & Bacon Center for Excellence in Advocacy; and several clinical and externship programs that help students gain hands-on experience.

The magazine also highlighted innovative and practical mediation training offered to first-year students in the law school’s Legal Skills program.

KU Law was listed as one of the “Best Schools for Practical Training” in the Spring 2022 issue of PreLaw magazine. This ranking focuses on hands-on offerings, including clinics, field placements, mock lessons, pro bono service hours, and mock court attendance.

“KU Law’s program is designed to give students the kind of practical training that will prepare them for a successful legal career, starting in the first year of law school,” said Stephen Mazza, Dean and Professor of Law. “From the first-year course on legal skills to graduate-level workshops on negotiating business agreements or taking depositions, KU Law’s courses and faculty help ensure that graduates can pursue jobs that match their their interests.”

Visit the KU Law website for an infographic with additional Class of 2021 employment data.

Photo: Students and employers meet at KU Law’s Legal Career Options Day job fair in November 2021. Credit: Meg Kumin, KU Marketing.

Nancy I. Romero