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North Carolina Law Schools Compared by Employment
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law schools compared

Summary: North Carolina’s law schools compared in terms of post-grad employment.

The legal market is still crawling, with little reprieve, after the 2008 recession, as well as after such annoying innovations as over-the-seas outsourcing and computerized data-base searches, reducing the necessity for lawyers to locate legal resources. So what’s a good metric on how things stand? For North Carolina, we might consider how the six law schools compare in terms of what truly matters: how many of their graduates were employed within 6 to 18 months in a market requiring a law degree? After all, that’s what the lawyers-to-be are eager to know. And in this, the schools differ starkly.


In the number one spot is Durham’s Duke University, with about 91 percent of its 2013 graduates employed in a legal job as of March 15, 2014. This data is from the American Bar Association’s raw data for 2013 graduates. Despite that 1 in 10 of Duke’s graduates aren’t even employed as lawyers – despite Duke being one of the top law schools in the university, ranked 7th nationally – this is a relatively bright statistic, especially when contrasted North Carolina’s worst.

And that would be North Carolina’s Central University School of Law, also in Durham, which could brag of 26 percent of its 2013 grads employed in law. That is to say, the vast majority of its students were not working in employment that even required them to go to law school. Considering that the school was ranked 199th out of 201 amidst ABA approved schools, this isn’t too surprising.

The remaining 5 schools fell between these extremes. UNC School of Law in Chapel Hill had a 72.5 percent employment, Campbell University Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law had 71.8, Forest University School of Law at 71.1, Elon University School of Law at 45.1 percent, and Charlotte School of Law at 43.7 percent. Certainly it matters which school you study at, with even the best giving you no assurance you will end up in your desired employment.

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