’s Top Go-To Law Schools

Columbia University Law School’s Top Go-To Law Schools

This week, officially released its “Top 50 Go-To Law Schools” ranking – a measure of graduates who work in blue shoe law firms.
Coming in at No. 1 was Columbia Law School, with 71% of its recent graduate class now working in Big Law. The University of Pennsylvania Law School followed at No. 2. New York University School of Law rounded out the Top 3.
Columbia Law Wins Big, Again
This was the sixth year in a row that Columbia Law landed the No. 1 spot on’s Go-To Law Schools Ranking.
The New York-based law school has been successful year-after-year in getting graduates top jobs in Big Law.
Marta Ricardo, Dean of Career Services at Columbia Law, says part of that success can be attributed to the intense preparation law students go through for on-campus interviews. The school’s location in NYC also plays a factor, however.
“We look at every single resume. We make every single student do a practice interview with an external lawyer. We prepare them as much as possible,” Ricardo tells “They also have the benefit of having spent their first year of law school in New York City. They see all the leading practitioners come to campus. They are very prepared, in terms of what Big Law practice looks like.”
Strong Job Market
The job market of law grads has been relatively strong in recent years.
According to employment numbers from National Association of Law Placement (NALP), class of 2017 law grads saw an overall employment rate of 88.6%. Additionally, the number of grads employed in jobs that require bar passage was 71.6%, a 4% increase from the year before.
James Leipold, NALP’s executive director, says the job market for law grads is the most optimistic it has been since the recession.
“Some cautious optimism seems in order,” Leipold tells Above The Law. “Barring another economic slowdown or interruption and barring a significant jump in law school enrollment as a result of rising applications, the employment outlook for recent law school graduates looks brighter (if not exactly rosy) than it has at any time since 2008, and that is good news.”
To compile its Go-To Law School rankings, ranked the top 50 law schools by the percentage of 2018 JD grads who accepted jobs at the largest 100 law firms. received the data from the largest 100 firms in the country. The publication also used data from ALM Media LLC’s RivalEdge database to account for firms that did not submit numbers for the ranking.
The ranking does not take into consideration 2018 law grads who took jobs as judicial clerks nor data around 2018 LLM grads.
Check out the Top 25 Go-To Law Schools below.
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Sources:,, Above The Law, National Association of Law Placement (NALP)

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