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Fordham University School of Law

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Fordham University School of Law
Seal of Fordham University
Established 1905
School type Private non-profit
Location New York City, NY, US
Faculty (See List)
USNWR ranking 27
Annual tuition
Outlines 0 (See List)
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Fordham University School of Law is located in New York City, NY

Fordham University School of Law (commonly known as Fordham Law or Fordham Law School) is a part of Fordham University in the United States. The School is located in the Borough of Manhattan in New York City, and is one of eight ABA-approved law schools in that city.


Fordham Law atrium viewed from Lowenstein Plaza

According to the U.S. News & World Report, 1,516 J.D. students attend Fordham Law.[1] There are 1,170 are in the Day Division and the rest attend the Evening Division. Fordham Law also offers Master of Laws (LL.M.) degrees in the following specializations: Banking, Corporate, & Finance Law; International Business & Trade Law; and Intellectual Property & Information Technology Law. Joint degrees are also offered in conjunction with Fordham's other graduate schools, including J.D./M.A. in International Political Economy and Development; J.D./M.B.A.; and J.D./M.S.W. William Treanor became the ninth dean of Fordham Law School in 2002, succeeding John Feerick.

Founded in 1905, Fordham Law commemorated its Centennial during the 2005-2006 academic year, and capped the year-long celebration with an alumni gala on Ellis Island on September 28, the school's official birthday. The school used the occasion of its Centennial to launch a new fundraising drive in 2005, and in just one year has raised more than $10 million thanks in large part to the more than 100 "Centennial Founders" who each contributed $100,000 or more. As of February 2006, Fordham has met 71% of its Centennial goal of 100,000 hours of collective community service from students, faculty, administrators, and alumni.[2]


According to US News and World Report, Fordham Law is a top-tier law school, with a 2008 ranking of 25.[3] Its average of 25th and 75th percentile LSAT score is tied for 15th place with UCLA and USC at 165.5. It is the highest-ranked law school in New York state with an evening program.

According to the 2006 AmLaw 100 database from the American Lawyer, Fordham is 9th in placement of graduates into the top 50 firms, 8th in placement for the top 25 firms, and 7th for the top ten firms. (Law school graduates at top firms identified through “Martindale Hubbell Listings, All” database of LexisNexis, identifying every attorney from any of top firms who graduated from a particular law school).


Fordham Law School

Originally located in New York's downtown Financial District, Fordham Law is currently located on the West Side of Manhattan, as part of Fordham University's Lincoln Center campus. The main law school building is named for Benjamin A. Javits (LL.B 1918), brother of Jacob K. Javits. In 1984, the Ned Doyle Building (actually only a new wing) was added. Fordham Law also rents space at 33 West 60th Street, across Columbus Avenue from its main building, for some faculty offices, its law clinic, and administrative offices for the Crowley Program, Admissions, and Financial Aid.

As part of the university's Lincoln Center Master Plan, unveiled in 2005,[4] a new law school building will be completed some time around 2011.[5] The existing building will then be "razed and replaced by a 21-story dormitory" sometime around 2025.[6] The new building is still in the planning stages, with the law school administration holding the first round of focus groups with student organization leaders in March 2006.


Legal writing program

Leo T. Kissam Memorial Law Library at Fordham Law School
On behalf of Fordham, Dean Treanor bestowed upon civil rights pioneer Judge Robert L. Carter a rare, honorary juris doctor.

In addition to a traditional J.D. curriculum, Fordham offers an extensive legal writing program, with many course offerings beyond the first year. All legal writing courses are taught by distinguished practitioners serving as adjunct professors. Last year's adjuncts included a federal judge, several attorneys in high positions in government service, and many partners in large New York firms.

Clinical education

Clinical education is available but not required. Students are selected for clinics via a competitive application process. Fordham students have an opportunity to enroll in clinics following their first year, and after taking the Fundamental Lawyering Skills course. The following clinics were offered to J.D. students in 2006:

  • Community Economic Development
  • Criminal Defense
  • Family Advocacy
  • Federal Litigation
  • International Justice
  • Mediation
  • Securities Arbitration
  • Tax Litigation
  • Urban Policy

Fordham's clinics represent clients as "Lincoln Square Legal Services."

Crowley Program in International Human Rights

The Crowley Program in International Human Rights, named after the late Professor Joseph R. Crowley, was founded in 1997. It is a highly selective program of study in international human rights law undertaken in the 2L year, culminating in a two-week overseas fact-finding mission in the summer. Students in the program are known as Crowley Scholars. In the fall semester, Crowley Scholars are required to take International Human Rights, a survey course, and are encouraged to take other human rights/international law courses. In the spring, Crowley Scholars take a seminar to prepare them for the summer fact-finding mission. Following the mission, Crowley Scholars assist in writing the mission report, which is later published in the Fordham International Law Journal. The program is overseen by in part by a Crowley Fellow, who serves a one-year adjunct professorship.

Student publications

Fordham Law atrium, interior

Students at Fordham Law publish six law journals. In order of their founding, they are:

In addition, the Stein Center for Ethics and Public Interest Law publishes two newsletters, The Common Good (for the law school community at large) and The Steins (for Stein Scholars). Although Fordham Law does not have a printed student newspaper, a school-funded, student-written blog called the Fordham Law Examiner was started in 2005.

Robert Moses Plaza, adjacent to the law school. New York's "Master Builder" was instrumental in obtaining the land for the Lincoln Center campus.

Public Interest Resource Center

Fordham's Public Interest Resource Center (PIRC) serves as the clearinghouse for student community service and pro bono work, and hosts 19 student-run organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, Unemployment Action Center, Just Democracy, and others.

Stein Scholars

The PIRC also runs the competitive Stein Scholars Program in Public Interest Law and Ethics, in which selected students train for a career in the public sphere and receive funding for doing unpaid public interest work. The program is sponsored by the Louis Stein Center for Law and Ethics, which counts among its Board of Advisors several influential people, including Geraldine Ferraro '60, three sitting judges, and others.

Notable alumni

Judge Denny Chin, October 2005.

See also


  1. Largest law schools
  2. Centennial Community Service Project, Fordham Law School.
  3. Top Law Schools, America's Best Graduate Schools 2008, U.S. News & World Report
  4. Fordham Unveils Lincoln Center Master Plan, press release, Aug. 26, 2005; Master Plan Unveiled, Inside Fordham Online, Mar. 2005
  5. Cramped Fordham Plans to Expand at Lincoln Center, New York Times, Feb. 23, 2005
  6. Id.
  7. John Doyle, Washington and Lee University, School of Law Library - Most-Cited Legal Periodicals: U.S. and selected non-U.S., 2005 rankings of law school journals.
  8. To Shred or Not to Shred: Document Retention Policies and Federal Obstruction of Justice Statutes, by Christopher R. Chase, 8 Fordham J. Corp. & Fin. L. 721 (2003).

External links