Paul M. Hebert Law Center
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|Paul M. Hebert Law Center|
|Parent school||Louisiana State University System|
|School type||Public university|
|Dean||Jack M. Weiss|
|Location||Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States|
|Bar pass rate||86.5%|
Because Louisiana is a civil law state, unlike its 49 common law sister states, the curriculum includes both civil law and common law courses, requiring 94 hours for graduation, the most in the United States. In the Fall of 2002, the LSU Law Center became the sole United States law school, and only one of two law schools in the Western Hemisphere, offering a course of study leading to the simultaneous conferring of a J.D. (Juris Doctor), which is the normal first degree in American law schools, and a B.C.L. (Bachelor of Civil Law), which recognizes the training its students receive in both the common and the civil law. As of June 2008, the LSU Law Center will no longer confer the B.C.L., but will confer a Graduate Diploma in Civil Law instead. This is due to a conflict with the Southern Association of Colleges (SACS) over the requirements of a bachelor degree.
The Paul M. Hebert Law Center is an autonomous campus of, rather than a dependent college of, its larger university. Its designation as a Law Center, rather than Law School, derives not only from its campus status but from the centralization on its campus of J.D. and post-J.D. programs, foreign and graduate programs, including European programs at the Jean Moulin University Lyon 3 School of Law, France, and the University of Louvain, Belgium, and the direction of the Louisiana Law Institute and the Louisiana Judicial College, among other initiatives.
In 1904, LSU constitutional law professor Arthur T. Prescott, who earlier had been the founding president of Louisiana Tech University, became the first to propose the establishment of a law school at LSU.
The law school came to fruition in 1906, with nineteen founding students. Since 1924, the LSU Law Center has been a member of the Association of American Law Schools and approved by the American Bar Association. The Law Center was renamed in honor of Dean Paul M. Hebert  (1907–1977), the longest serving Dean of the LSU Law School, who served in that role with brief interruptions from 1937 until his death in 1977. One of these interruptions occurred in 1947-1948, when he was appointed as a judge for the United States Military Tribunals in Nuremberg.
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The LSU Law Center has moved nine spots upward in the 2014 U.S. News rankings of law schools, climbing to 76th. The number 76 ranking is the second highest in LSU Law history, bested only by the school's ranking of number 75 in 2010.
The LSU Law Moot Court/Trial Advocacy Program has been ranked in the Top 25 nationally. Since the 2005-06 academic year, the Moot Court/Trial Advocacy Program has earned 5 National Moot Court Championships, 7 National Second Place Finishes, 3 State Championships (LSBA Mock Trial), 15 Top 8 Finishes in National Quarter Finals, 15 Regional Championship or Finalist Awards, 18 Best Oralist/Best Individual Advocate Awards, and, 8 Best Brief/Best Motion Awards.
The LSU Law Center ranked 11th in the United States in the percentage of 2011 graduates employed in full-time, long-term legal jobs within nine months of graduation, according to an analysis published by the Wall Street Journal. The ranking was based on detailed legal employment data reported by all accredited law schools to the American Bar Association (ABA).
A recent study conducted by The National Jurist magazine identified LSU Law as the number 1 school in the United States in terms of first-time bar passage ratios in a predictive statistical model based on Law School Admission Test scores. It also ranked the historic LSU Law Library number 5 based on measures reported to the ABA by all ABA-approved law schools.
In 2011, the Law Center received 1,437 applications for the J.D./C.L. program for an enrolled class of 239. The current first-year class includes graduates from 80 colleges and universities throughout the nation. Women make up 49% of the class, 51% are men. Approximately 35% of the class of 2014 came from outside Louisiana representing 19 others states, United States Virgin Islands, France, and China.
LSU Journal of Energy Law and Resources
The Center publishes the biannual open-access LSU Journal of Energy Law and Resources that focuses on the law of energy development, energy industries, natural resources, and sustainable development.
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