Hamline University School of Law
|Hamline University School of Law|
|School type||Private university|
|Location||St. Paul, Minnesota, US|
|Bar pass rate||91%|
Hamline University School of Law is a private law school affiliated with Hamline University in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The School of Law was founded in 1972 as the Midwestern School of Law by a group of legal professionals. In 1976, it was absorbed by Hamline University as its own School of Law, making Hamline one of the few smaller universities to support a full law school. The School is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools. Hamline has 41 full-time faculty members, including nationally recognized experts in bioethics, health law, intellectual property, international trade, corporate law, and critical race theory. Faculty members are committed to an "open door" policy to help students learn the practice of law. Experienced adjunct faculty complement the faculty by teaching upper division courses in specialty areas. Hamline's Career Services Office (CSO) provides informational programs, mock interviews, one-on-one counseling, networking opportunities, and an online job bank. The CSO most recently launched an innovative web-based mentoring portal, HUSLink, to connect alumni and other experienced legal practitioners with recent Hamline graduates. CSO hosts on-campus interviews for interested employers and works extensively with employers to market Hamline law students.
Hamline University School of Law (law.hamline.edu) offers full- and part-time legal education in pursuit of the Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree, as well as the Master of Law (LL.M.) degree for international lawyers. Dual degrees are available in Public Administration, Business Management, Nonprofit Management, Fine Arts in Creative Writing, and Organizational Leadership.
Hamline's curriculum supports 13 organized tracks of study, including business/commercial law, child advocacy, dispute resolution, criminal law, government and regulatory affairs, health law, intellectual property, international law, labor law, litigation and oral practice, property law,and public and human rights. The school is home to three centers of excellence – the Dispute Resolution Institute, the Health Law Institute, and the Business Law Institute.
The school places a high priority on students becoming proficient in problem-solving, skilled in advocacy, and cognizant of global implications. Two new 1L courses, "Practice, Problem-Solving and Professionalism" and "International Law," encourage students on this path beginning in their first year at Hamline. The school also offers clinics in child advocacy, education, employment discrimination, mediation, health law, immigration law, innocence, mediation, small business/non-profit, state public defender and trial practice. A practicum program combines 114 hours of field experience with a classroom component focused on enhancing a student's lawyering skills. Pro bono legal service also is encouraged, with Hamline requiring a minimum of 24 hours of pro bono service as part of each student's J.D. education. Many Hamline students far exceed this minimum. These experiences allow Hamline students to gain practical legal experience, with 95 percent of the school's 2009 graduates (for whom information is available) employed within nine months of graduation.
Moot court and similar competitions involve legal research, brief writing and oral argument. Hamline students have a record of excelling in these competitions, including the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Mediation Representation Competition in Paris and the Willem C. Vis International Arbitration Moot in Hong Kong. A video on Hamline and the Vis competition can be found on YouTube.
Hamline has an exceptionally strong Legal Research and Writing program in which students receive individualized attention in small sections. A third semester has been added to the 1L curriculum, beginning in fall 2010, to further reinforce excellent writing skills. More attention also is being focused on significant areas that include motion practice, transactional work and professionalism.
Hamline University School of Law is nationally and internationally recognized for its alternative dispute resolution program, the Dispute Resolution Institute (DRI). DRI was begun in 1991 and provides a full range of related programing, including a summer institute, January term courses, certificate programs and a bi-annual symposium. DRI offers more than 30 courses in both domestic and international dispute resolution, including certificate programs in arbitration law and practice, problem-solving and dispute resolution. DRI courses are enhanced by agreements with international institutions that bring international students to Hamline University and send U.S. students overseas. Another unique feature of DRI academic programming is the cross-disciplinary nature that has been achieved. At Hamline, law students have the opportunity to study alongside practicing lawyers and graduate students from a variety of disciplines.
The Dispute Resolution Institute launched a publication initiative, DRI Press, in 2009 and a video production initiative, DRI Productions, in 2010 to increase the availability of high-quality teaching and training materials. In May 2011, DRI will host a major international conference in Beijing, China as the culmination of a multi-year, cross-disciplinary, global initiative to critically examine how graduate schools can best prepare lawyers, business leaders and other professionals for negotiation success anywhere in the world.
Established in 2006, the Health Law Institute at Hamline University School of Law offers a comprehensive health law curriculum—including a General Health Law Certificate—and a variety of professional development opportunities to students and the health law community. Courses also are available through Hamline's part-time weekend program, summer term and January term. The January and summer term allows many students from beyond Minnesota to take health law courses that are not available at their home campus.
Students develop critical professional skills through Hamline's Health Law Clinic, which allows them to represent clients in health law-related administrative hearings, and through health law practicum externships that include a minimum of 114 hours of field work. Practicum placements have included Fairview Health Services, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, Minnesota Department of Health, Mayo Clinic Legal Department, Medica Health Plans, among others.
The Health Law Institute was the 2009 recipient of the fifth annual International Compliance and Ethics Award from the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics. The award pays tribute to organizations and individuals making significant contributions to the corporate compliance and business ethics profession. Hamline's Health Law Institute includes a Health Care Compliance Certificate program, which is one of only six such programs in the nation to be accredited by the Compliance Certification Board. The Health Care Compliance Certificate program is also offered online for working professionals.
The Dispute Resolution Institute, the Health Law Institute, and Emerging HealthCare Communities (EHCCO) have partnered to form the Conflict Engagement for Health Professionals Certificate. The first class began the program in Spring 2012.
The Business Law Institute (BLI) was created in January 2011 and is led by Director Ann Graham. BLI draws from the exceptional core business law curriculum that has long been a fixture within Hamline Law and better equips students with the skills they need as they guide transactions and navigate solutions to disputes. BLI balances experiential learning and ethical problem-solving with key subjects relevant to business. Students have the opportunity to collaborate with the local business community as well as students at Hamline University's School of Business. The result is well-connected lawyers who are prepared for the realities of business law practice.
Post-Graduation Employment & Rankings
Employment Outcomes: According to the law professor blog, The Faculty Lounge, based on 2012 ABA data, only 42.6% of graduates obtained full-time, long term positions requiring bar admission (i.e., jobs as lawyers), 9 months after graduation, ranking 163rd out of 197 law schools.
The 2014 U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Law Schools” ranked Hamline's overall law school program in a six-way tie at #126 among the 144 law schools it ranked. The 2014 rankings place the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) program fourth among 14 schools, and Hamline's Health Law Institute is ranked 16th of 18 ranked schools.  The four-year average of first-time bar passage rate for Hamline students is about 91%.
The school publishes two law journals. The Hamline Law Review is in the top 20% of the Most Cited Law Reviews . The Hamline Journal of Public Law and Policy provides a forum for discussions relating to public policy decisions of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches at all levels of government. Hamline law students staff the Hamline Law Review and the Hamline Journal of Public Law and Policy.
The School of Law fields student-run sports teams under the team name Res Ipsa, particularly in ice hockey, where it competes in community leagues, intramural competition, and inter-law school competition among the Minnesota-based law schools.
- Don Betzold, Minnesota State Senator
- Donovan Frank, Judge, U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota
- John Lesch, Minnesota State Representative
- Paul Magers, renowned CBS – Los Angeles newscaster
- Carly Melin, Minnesota State Representative
- Eric Swanson, attorney
- Van Tran, California Assemblyman
- Charles Wiger, Minnesota State Senator
- "Hamline University Profile' Hamline University, P.11" Accessed October 15, 2013.
- "U.S. News and World Report Education: Grad Schools, Hamline University, Grad School: Law School." Accessed April 23, 2013.
- Rosin, Gary. "Full Rankings: Bar Admission Required, Full-Time, Long Term", The Faculty Lounge, March 30, 2013. Retrieved on February 24, 2014, http://www.thefacultylounge.org/2013/03/-full-rankings-bar-admission-required-full-time-long-term.html. -- For the latest Employment Summary Reports from the American Bar Association, Section of Legal Education, see http://employmentsummary.abaquestionnaire.org/
- "U.S. News & World Report Best Grad Schools, Law 2014, pg. 6" Accessed April 27, 2013.
- "U.S. News & World Report Best Grad Schools, Law 2014, Dispute Resolution". Accessed April 23, 2013.
- "Law School Rankings Rise", Hamline University website, March 12, 2013. Accessed April 23, 2013.
- "U.S. News & World Report Best Grad Schools, Law 2014, Healthcare Law". Box at bottom of page: "See all 18 Ranked Schools". Accessed April 23, 2013.
- "Hamline University School of Law: Class Profile". Hamline.edu. Retrieved January 4, 2011.
- "Don Betzold". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "Donovan Frank". Federal Judicial Center. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "John Lesch". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "Carly Melin". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "Van Tran". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "Charles Wiger". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- Hamline University School of Law mainpage
- Hamline Law Review's home page
- Hamline Journal of Public Law and Policy
- Hamline Journal of Law and Religion
- Hamline Health Law Institute
- Hamline Alternative Dispute Resolution Program