New Employment Numbers Show CUNY Law Continues to Lead in Public Interest

Today’s New York Law Journal reports on recently released statistics from the American Bar Association on the employment of 2012 grads. CUNY Law continues to have one of the highest rates in the nation and the highest in New York State of sending graduates into public service and public interest jobs. CUNY also significantly increased the number of recent graduates who had full-time, permanent positions requiring bar passage, jumping 17.7 points to 54.6 percent.

Three New York law schools— Columbia, NYU and Cornell—were in the nation’s top five most likely to send their students to jobs at big law firms with 100 or more lawyers, according to ABA data. Columbia sent 64.2 percent to big firms, while NYU and Cornell sent 59.5 percent and 57.9 percent, respectively.

Others were far likelier to send their students into government and public interest jobs.

The City University of New York School of Law, for example, sent 43.3 percent of its graduates into those fields, one of the highest rates in the nation, while NYU Law, sent 21.6 percent, the second-highest percentage for the New York schools.

Nationwide, the percentage of students in positions funded by their schools decreased less than 1 percent, to about 4 percent of all recent graduates.

CUNY Law leads the pack for New York schools in that category, employing 13.5 percent of its most recent class. NYU Law and Fordham University School of Law employ about 13 percent and 12 percent, respectively, in jobs with nonprofits, public interest and governmental organizations across the country, as well as in their own centers and clinics.

Nearly all of the recent graduates employed by CUNY Law are employed through our LaunchPad for Justice and Incubator for Justice programs.

LaunchPad, a first-in-the-nation program introduced in conjunction with the New York State Courts, provides recent graduates with the opportunity to represent clients before being admitted to the New York State Bar. Through special practice orders, recent grads may appear and represent clients in Civil Court through the “Volunteer Lawyers for a Day” (VLFD) program. In keeping with their public interest mission, CUNY Law graduates represent low-income New Yorkers facing eviction, foreclosure, and landlords who refuse to repair heating systems, hot water systems, and other essentials. They undergo rigorous training and supervision by attorneys in CUNY Law’s Community Legal Resource Network (CLRN) and court-employed attorneys.

CUNY Law’s Incubator, the first of its kind in the nation, provides support and training to recent graduates to help them set up their own practices and aims to develop lawyers who will successfully serve low-income communities that lack access to legal representation.

Read the full article.