Loyola University School of Law (Chicago)
Academics & Programs: Loyola University—Chicago’s School of Law is “a stellar school” that is “well-known in the Midwest” and located “in the most desirable area” of “a world-class city.” Perks here include an “unrivaled” sense of community, no fewer than six journals, study abroad programs in, among other places, Rome and Beijing, and eleven individual areas of focus. There are specialty programs and certificates galore, too. “The health law program is one of the best in the country.” “Loyola is also extremely well-known for [its] child and family law program.” Students say that the way Loyola imparts advocacy skills is another advantage. “Loyola is perhaps the only law school in Chicago which produces trial attorneys as a rule, not as an unexpected happenstance,” brags a 3L.
The “very accessible” administration here “is not always the most organized,” but it “is composed of smart and kind people” who go “out of their way to help the students.” “Honestly, everyone here wants the students to succeed,” beams a 2L, “and that feeling is apparent.” The full-time faculty is “extraordinarily knowledgeable” and otherwise “really impressive.” “The professors are brilliant, but not stuffy,” reports a 1L. “They have academic experience and professional experience that meld perfectly.” “Professors are friendly and always available,” adds a 3L. There’s “a strong emphasis on professors having open-door policies and establishing relationships with students,” and they “will go out of their way to help students in the classroom and in finding a job.” The adjunct professors who teach some specialized elective courses are reportedly “either really great or horribly atrocious, with not much in the way of middle ground.”
Some students are critical of the Office of Career Services at Loyola. However, the general sentiment is that the administrative staff is “amazing” and that career prospects are bright. Public service jobs and internships are “easy to find.” In the private sector, starting salaries are formidable. “In the greater Chicago legal community, Loyola seemingly carries a hefty reputation for producing good lawyers,” relates a 3L. Loyola’s “very loyal alumni” are also a tremendous asset when it comes to job searches. “The alumni have a strong connection with the law school,” says a 2L. Networking events with alums are common.
Campus Life/Facilities: The “plush,” “state-of-the-art” facility here is relatively new, but “that doesn’t seem to deter the administration from constantly updating just about everything.” Most classrooms are “spacious and modern.” “The new classrooms are really nice” “with plug-ins for your laptop at every space.” “The library is really great,” comments a 2L. “There are always plenty of tables and study rooms available.” “The new courtroom [is] gorgeous.” Technology is reportedly “excellent,” too. “I can print to the school’s printers from my laptop,” notes a 1L. “The wireless Internet always seems to be working (knock on wood).”
“There is very little interaction between the day and evening-section students” but, within those two largely separate groups, “Loyola deliberately fosters an environment of student cooperation.” Again and again, students here extol “the administration’s ability to create a sense of community within the school” despite the urban location. “Law students at Loyola are genuinely happy and friendly,” they tell us. “There is very little competition or animosity.” “There is no pettiness.” “The atmosphere is productive and encouraging,” “even though there is a mandatory grade curve.” “People will share notes and have study groups ‘til the cows come home.”
By all accounts, the quality of life beyond the academic sphere here is high. Loyola’s location in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood is fabulous. It’s “very affluent,” which means that “housing around Loyola can be more expensive,” but it’s very vibrant and very safe. The Magnificent Mile—one of the planet’s premier shopping districts—is “just steps away” from campus, which “makes lunchtime errands or emergency business casual clothes purchases for a forgotten networking event very easy.” Access to public transit is “ideal” and law offices and federal and state courthouses in the Loop are a reasonable walk away.
“A huge gossip mill” notwithstanding, “Loyola creates a great social scene” and students report that they have “a very good social life.” “You would have to try pretty hard to keep from making friends,” challenges a 1L. There are over thirty student-run organizations. Rollicking Thursday night bar reviews “create an easy outlet for social interaction and class cohesiveness.” If you have the energy and the time, there are “social events every weekend” as well.
* The Princeton Review is not affiliated with Princeton University.