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University of Puerto Rico School of Law
|University of Puerto Rico School of Law|
|Dean||Vivian I. Neptune- Rivera|
|Location||Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico, US|
|Faculty||123 (See List)|
|Bar pass rate||74.86%|
|Outlines||0 (See List)|
The University of Puerto Rico School of Law is a law school in Puerto Rico. It is one of the professional graduate schools of University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus and the only law school in the University of Puerto Rico System. It was founded in 1913 at its present site in Río Piedras, which at the time was an independent municipality and is now part of the City of San Juan. The School of Law has been accredited by the American Bar Association since 1945 and by the Association of American Law Schools since 1948. It is also accredited by the Council on Higher Education and the Puerto Rico Supreme Court.
The law school provides a unique venue for the study of the civil law tradition and its complex interaction with common law and U.S. federal law, including the controversial application of the U.S. Constitution to Puerto Rico's special political status.
The Law School's academic program aims to increase and diversify the learning and development experiences of its students. Thus, half of its 92 credit/hour study program is elective, with course offerings ranging from theoretical to practical in topics pertaining to civil rights, technology, feminism, business, international relations and comparative law, among others. In addition, students are required to participate in a clinical program. The majority of the courses are taught in Spanish.
The Law School has several programs of study.
- Juris Doctor (JD)
- Juris Doctor / Master of Business Administration concurrently (JD / MBA)
- Juris Doctor / Double Degree Program, University of Barcelona (JD / LLB)
- Juris Doctor / Master of Public Policy, University of Minnesota (JD / MPP)
- Juris Doctor / Doctor of Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Puerto Rico (JD / MD)
- Master of Laws (LLM) for International Students
Each incoming class at the Law School has 215 students. Of those, the top two hundred (93%) are automatically selected on the basis of a numerical ranking of academic excellence which gives equal weight to the three basic criteria for admission: (1) the undergraduate GPA, as computed by the Law School Data Assembly Service (an information collection service offered by the Law School Admission Council); (2) the LSAT score; and (3) the score of either the Graduate Record Examination or its Spanish language equivalent, the EXADEP (which, like the GRE, is offered by the Educational Testing Service).
The remaining 15 spaces (7%) are selected by the Admissions Committee from among those applicants who are in positions 201 to 260 of the aforementioned ranking of academic excellence. The Committee makes a full assessment of the applicant's file, considering the essay and presented academic work, and gives weight to such criteria as economic disadvantage, academic achievement, graduate studies, trends in academic progress, publications, and extracurricular activities, to reach a conclusion about the applicant's aptitude for the study of law. Another 15 students in this group are placed on a waiting list.
Other professors include Chloé S. Georas, Glenda Labadie-Jackson, Santos P. Amadeo, José Julián Álvarez González, Michel Godreau Robles, Érika Fontánez Torres, Vivian Neptune, Ana Cristina Gómez, Hiram Meléndez Juarbe, Ernesto Chiesa Aponte, Olga Resumil Ramírez, Efrén Rivera Ramos, Ivette Ramos Buonomo, Luis Muñiz Argüelles, Ana Matanzo Vicéns, Guillermo Figueroa Prieto, Luis González Correa, Carlos Díaz Olivo, Carmelo Delgado Cintrón, Luis Aníbal Avilés, Demetrio Fernández, and Roberto Aponte Toro.
Visiting speakers have included United States Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and professors Lawrence Tribe of Harvard Law School, Owen Fiss of Yale Law School and the late Ferdinand Stone of Tulane Law School.
Some of the distinguished scholars who have served as deans, include:
- Manuel Rodríguez Ramos "Dean Emeritus"
- David Helfeld
- Jaime B. Fuster
- Carlos Cadilla
- Antonio García Padilla "Dean Emeritus"
- Dr. Efrén Rivera Ramos
- Dr. Roberto Aponte Toro
The Law School is housed in a building designed by architect Henry Klumb and inaugurated in 1962, replacing a converted tobacco storage facility which housed the Law school for many years. Built during David Helfeld's incumbency as Dean, it was extensively remodeled under Antonio García Padilla's term as the law school dean.