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CUNY Law Posts Highest Bar Pass Rate in School’s History

November 27, 2007

School Also Beats State Average for First Time

CUNY School of Law posted the highest New York State Bar Exam pass rate in its history, with 82.75 percent of students passing the July 2007 exam on their first try. Also, for the first time, Law School graduates’ performance beat the statewide average of 79.1 percent for first-time Bar Exam test-takers.

Eighty-seven CUNY Law graduates were authorized to sit for the two-day exam on July 24 and 25. A total of 72 passed, according to John J. McAlary, executive director of the NYS Board of Law Examiners, which administers the exam. The outcome for 2007 follows a 77 percent pass rate for the July exam in 2006.

CUNY School of Law Dean Michelle J. Anderson today said that she was very pleased with the results. “We are thrilled to be moving in the right direction,” Dean Anderson said, “and we hope to strengthen the positive trend in future years.”

In addition to initiatives that have been in place at the Law School for several years, several changes at the School in the past year likely contributed to the strong showing, Anderson said. The news about this year’s Bar exam comes in the wake of a number of accomplishments at the Law School:

  • The School has been asked, along with such prestigious law schools as Georgetown, Harvard, and NYU, to participate in a three-year study to analyze and shape the future of law school education. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Stanford Law School are organizing the panel, which will meet for the first time in December.
  • In 2007, CUNY School of Law again ranked in the top 10 schools in the nation in U.S. News & World Report annual rankings of law schools for the quality of its clinical practice program.
  • The Carnegie Foundation selected CUNY School of Law as a model for the integration of clinical education and traditional doctrinal training in its report on law school education, released earlier this year.

CUNY School of Law is the premier public interest law school in the country. It trains lawyers to serve the underprivileged and disempowered and to make a difference in their communities. CUNY Law pioneered the model of integrating a lawyering curriculum with traditional doctrinal study. The school has been praised in a study by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, “Educating Lawyers: Preparation for the Profession of Law,” for being one of the few law schools in the country to prepare students for practice through instruction in theory, skills, and ethics. The school also will participate in a three-year study program, led by Carnegie and Stanford Law School, to evaluate the future of law school education. Roughly nine other schools, among them Harvard, Georgetown and NYU law schools, will participate.

Contact: Emily Sachar, Director of Media Relations, 718-340-4530, office; 718-644-5789, cell;


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