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Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Lawsky Entry Level Hiring Report 2024

Following is a data summary of Reported Entry-Level Law School Hiring as of Spring 2024. To remain consistent with past years, while the spreadsheet contains all hiring information received, the data analysis includes only tenure-track hires at U.S. law schools. The data analysis also includes several hires who requested not to be included in the spreadsheet as of the date of this posting.

This report and the spreadsheet are freely available under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license, cited as Sarah Lawsky, Reported Entry-Level Law School Hiring Spring 2024, PrawfsBlawg, https://prawfsblawg.blogs.com/prawfsblawg/2024/05/lawsky-entry-level-hiring-report-2024.html.

Here is the full spreadsheet:


There were 112 tenure-track hires at U.S. law schools reported, at 74 different law schools.

Q: How does 112 reported hires compare to past years?

A: There are fewer hires than each of the last two years, but still somewhat more than usual compared to the years since the “new normal” began. The average number of hires per year since 2014 is 88. (I omit 2010 in this and all subsequent cross-year comparisons because insufficient data was collected that year to include it in the report.)


It would useful to know the percentage of those on the market who got jobs. While the AALS does not provide that information, the number of forms in the first distribution of FAR AALS forms is not a terrible proxy. The x-axis here is Hiring Year; thus, for example, if the Hiring Year is 2024, the FAR forms were released in 2023.


As that graph suggests, the hires per FAR form were roughly comparable to 2019 and onward; last year seems to have been an anomaly.


As is true every year, some people who received entry-level jobs and are represented in this data did not participate in the AALS/FAR process.

Q: You say the hires were at 74 law schools. How does that compare to previous years?

A: Comparable to previous relatively recent years.


Q: How many reported hires got their JD from School X?


Yale: 23; Harvard: 12; NYU: 8; Georgetown: 6; Chicago: 5; Berkeley: 4; Michigan: 4; Hebrew University: 3; Virginia: 3; Penn: 3; Baylor: 3; Fewer than Three: 38

Schools in the “fewer than three hires” category with two JD/LLBs who reported hires: Minnesota; Northwestern; UCLA; Vanderbilt; William & Mary

Schools in the “fewer than three hires” category with one JD/LLB who reported hires: Alabama; Arizona; Arizona State; Brooklyn; Cardozo; Chicago Kent; Columbia; FGV Direito São Paulo; Geneva; Houston; ITAM; Kogi State University; LSE; Lahore University; Marie Curie-Sklodowska; McGeorge; Nanchang; Nat'l Law University Jodhpur; Notre Dame; Ohio State; Pepperdine; Reichman; San Francisco; Stanford; Tel Aviv; UNLV; Universidad Torcuato Di Tella; Washington & Lee

A high percentage of hires every year get their degree from Yale, Harvard, Stanford, or NYU.


However, over time, many schools are represented as the source of entry-level hiring.


The schools with four hires include: BYU; British Columbia; CUNY; Cardozo; Indiana-Bloomington; Iowa; LSU; Tel Aviv; Tennessee; Tulane; USC; Washington (St. Louis).

The schools with three hires include: American; Arizona; Arizona State; Arkansas-Fayetteville; Baylor; Brooklyn; Chicago Kent; Davis; Emory; Florida; George Mason; Howard; ITAM; Miami; Mitchell Hamline; Northeastern; Pittsburgh; Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile; Washington (University of).

The schools with two hires include: Cambridge; Colorado; East China University; Florida State; Georgia; Kansas; Kentucky; Lewis & Clark; Nat'l Law School of India; New Mexico; New South Wales; Nigeria Law School; North Carolina; North Dakota; Oklahoma; Oregon; Queen's University; Queensland; Reichman; San Diego; Seoul Nat'l U; Sorbonne; St. Louis; Suffolk; Thomas Jefferson; UNLV; Universidad Torcuato Di Tella; West Virginia; William & Mary.

The schools with one hire include: Ain Shams Fac of Law; Alabama; Aristotle U; Athens; Augsburg; Barry; Belarusian State U; Bonn; Catholic (Portugal); College of Mgmt Acad Stud; Cologne; Connecticut; Dayton; DePaul; Democritus of Thrace; Denver; Diego Portales; FGV Direito São Paulo; Freiburg; Fundacao Getulio Vargas; Geneva; Genoa; Georgia State; Ghent; Haifa; Hamburg; Hawaii; Hofstra; Houston; Humboldt; Idaho; Inter-American; Irvine; Kogi State University; LSE; Lahore University; Lisbon; Louisville; Loyola-Chicago; Loyola-LA; Loyola-New Orleans; Maine; Marie Curie-Sklodowska; McGeorge; McGill; Melbourne; Montana; Nanchang; Nat'l Chengchi U; Nat'l Law University Jodhpur; Nebraska; New Hampshire; Ohio State; Passac (Germany); Penn State; Pepperdine; Phillipines; Pontificia Universidad Javeriana; Richmond; Rutgers; SMU; San Francisco; Sao Paulo; Sapienza; Savannah; Shandong; Shenzhen; South Carolina; Southern; Southern Illinois; Sydney; Tehran; Toronto; Trinity; Tsinghua; Tulsa; UCL; Universitat Pompeu Fabra; University of Ljubljana; Utah; Vermont; Vienna; Wayne State; Whittier; Zimbabwe.

Again, this is a partial list, as over time I am certainly missing hires. This is just an aggregation of the information reported to me in the spring of the year in which I do each report.

And each year, there are relatively many unique schools represented.


The number of unique schools may be in part a function of the number of hires. Unique schools as a percentage of total hires is comparable to recent years. (This graph represents the number of unique schools from which hires got their JD in a given year divided by total number of hires for that year. If in a particular year there were five total hires, and each came from a different law school, the graph would show 5/5 = 100% for that year. If in a given year there were five total hires, and three of those hires came from School X and two came from school Y, then the graph would show 2/5 = 40% for that year.)


This information comes with two related caveats.

First, the spreadsheet reports the number of hires who received a JD from a particular school who accepted a tenure-track job, but not the number of JDs on the market who received a tenure-track job offer.

Second, the spreadsheet reports the count of JDs from a particular school, but not the rate at which JDs received (or accepted) offers. A smaller school with a high placement rate thus might not appear on the chart, whereas a larger program with a low placement rate might appear. This caveat means that smaller schools may be undervalued if one relies only on this data, while larger schools might be overvalued.

Q: How many reported hires had a fellowship, degree, or clerkship?

85 (about 76%) had a fellowship; 55 (about 49%) had a clerkship; 67 (about 60%) had a higher degree. 5 people had none of these credentials. The percentage of each of these credentials was consistent with but slightly lower than percentages in recent years.



12_percent_Higher Degree_per_year

Venn diagram. Of the five people who did not have a fellowship, clerkship, or advanced degree, at least four of the five had significant, extensive academic experience (three were non-tenure-track to tenure-track hires and one was a current professor in another field).


Comparing two categories of the Venn diagram related to fellowships, degrees, and clerkships--hires that have all three credentials, and hires that have none of the credentials--last year seems to have been an anomaly.


Q: From what law schools did people get these fellowships?

I count here any law school at which a person reports having a fellowship. So one person could account for two schools’ being listed here. For example, if a single individual had a fellowship at Columbia followed by a fellowship at NYU, that would be reflected below as +1 to Columbia and +1 to NYU.


NYU: 15; Harvard: 14; Penn: 4; Columbia: 4; Stanford: 4; Chicago: 4; UCLA: 3; Gonzaga: 3; George Washington: 3; Yale: 3; Berkeley: 3; Georgetown: 3; Fewer than Three: 41

This information comes with the same two caveats as the JD numbers.

First, the spreadsheet reports the number of hires who received a fellowship from a particular school who accepted a tenure-track job, but not the number of fellows who received a tenure-track job offer. This caveat likely applies to all or nearly all fellowship programs. Presumably, someone choosing between fellowships cares more about how many people received tenure-track job offers than about how many people accepted those offers.

Second, the spreadsheet reports the count of fellows, but not the rate at which fellows received (or accepted) offers. A smaller program with a high placement rate thus might not appear on the chart, whereas a larger program with a low placement rate might appear. This caveat means that smaller programs may be undervalued if one relies only on this data, while larger programs might be overvalued.

Q: Tell me more about these advanced degrees.

Okay, but first a caveat: Although some people had more than one advanced degree, the following looks only at what seemed to me to be the "highest" degree someone earned. For example, someone with a Ph.D. and an LL.M. would be counted only as a Ph.D. for purposes of this question. (This tracks the "Other Degree (1)" column.)

That said, looking only at what seemed to be the most advanced degree, and including expected degrees, the 67 “highest” advanced degrees broke down like this:


Doctorate: 39; Masters: 21; LLM: 6; MBA: 1

Topics ranged all over the maps. For the 39 Doctorates, a number of topics had multiple hires, including Law: 14; Philosophy: 6; Political Science: 6; History: 4; Health: 2. The other doctorate topics, each of which had one hire, were Religion; Education; Psychology; Literature; Finance; Sociology; Environment.

Q: That's a lot of doctorates, and that goes along with a lot of fellowships! How many people had a doctorate, or a fellowship, or both?

83% of the hires had either a doctorate (Ph.D., SJD, JSD, D.Phil.), a fellowship, or both. The percentage of reported hires with doctorates is roughly comparable to years since 2017, though still below 40%.


The percentage of doctorates who also had a fellowship is 79%, which is comparable to recent years (except for last year).


Q: How long ago did these reported hires get their initial law degrees?


Zero to Four Years (Graduated 2020-2024): 15; Five to Nine Years (Graduated 2015-2019): 48; Ten to 19 Years (Graduated 2005-2014): 44; Twenty or More Years (Graduated before 2005): 5

Q: How do the "years since initial degree" numbers compare to previous years?

Consistent with prior years.


Q: This is all wrong! I know for a fact that more people from School Y were hired!

Yes, this report is certainly missing some information. It is without question incomplete. If you are aware of an entry-level hire who is not reported, please let me know and I will add that person.

If you want to know about real entry level hiring, I commend to you Brian Leiter's report (hiring 1995-2011), the Katz et al. article (all law professors as of 2008), the George and Yoon article (entry level, 2007-2008 hiring year), and the Tsesis Report (entry level, 2012-2013 hiring year). This is just a report about entry-level hires reported to me as of the spring before the school year starts.

Originally posted 5/14/2024. Updated 5/15/24 to fix the JD school over time graph and add text for schools with fewer than five hires over time. Updated 5/16/24 to add hires and add text related to NTT to TT hires. Updated 5/29/24 to add one fellowship to fellowship school information. Updated 6/1/24 to fix FAR/percent graph. Updated 5/19/24 (approximately), 5/23/24, 5/31/24, 6/1/24, 6/11/24 to add hires.

Posted by Sarah Lawsky on May 14, 2024 at 03:54 PM in Entry Level Hiring Report | Permalink


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