University of Pittsburgh School of Law
|University of Pittsburgh School of Law|
|Dean||William M. Carter Jr.|
|Location||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA|
The University of Pittsburgh School of Law (sometimes referred to as Pitt Law) was founded in 1895. It became a charter member of the Association of American Law Schools in 1900. It primary home facility is the Barco Law Building. The school offers four degrees: Master of Studies in Law, Juris Doctor, Master of Laws for international students, and the Doctor of Juridical Science. The school offers several international legal programs, operates variety of clinics, and publishes several law journals.
The law department was founded in 1843 and is one of 17 schools constituting the University of Pittsburgh. The first four law degrees were conferred in 1847. Classes were held in a stone building at Third Street until the building was destroyed in the fire of 1845 and were then held in the university's building on Duquesne Way until that building was burned in 1849. Classes were continued after the second fire in the basement of the Third Presbyterian Church until the universities first law professor, Walter H. Lowrie, was elected to the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania in 1851 and forced him to abandon his teaching at the school. This, along with the fires that destroyed many of the university's facilities and resources, disrupted the development of the School of Law.
Although various attempts were made to reestablish law instruction beginning in 1862, a permanent law school was not established until 1895. The university at that time was named the Western University of Pennsylvania, but despite this, the law school was originally named the Pittsburgh Law School, a name it held until 1918. The Pittsburgh Law School became a charter member of the Association of American Law Schools in 1900.
The first classes in the permanently established school were conducted in the orphans' court rooms in the old Allegheny County courthouse. In 1897, the school moved into the old university building at Ross and Diamond streets that had been sold to the county in 1882. The school moved again in 1919-20 to the tenth floor of the Chamber of Commerce building. In 1936 the School of Law moved in its entirety to the 14-16 floors of the Cathedral of Learning on the main campus of the university located in the Oakland neighborhood of Pittsburgh. The School of Law moved into their own dedicated facility, the Barco Law Building, upon its opening on the university's main campus in 1976.
Today, Pitt's Law School faculty has been ranked 21st in the nation based on a standard objective measure of scholarly impact. Pitt Law is currently ranked 91st out of 184 in U.S. News & World Report's rankings of America's top law schools and is listed among the "Best Law Schools" by The Princeton Review. Pitt Law is also one of 80 law schools with membership in the Order of the Coif.
The University of Pittsburgh School of Law offers four degrees. The J.D. (Juris Doctor) is the required degree to practice law in most of the United States, thus J.D. students make up most of the school's student body. The following degrees are offered by Pitt Law:
- M.S.L. - Master of Studies in Law (designed for individuals wanting to expand their knowledge of the law, but not intending to practice law)
- J.D. - Juris Doctor (primary law degree)
- LL.M. - Master of Laws (international students)
- J.S.D. - Doctor of Juridical Science (a doctoral degree designed for lawyers seeking academic appointments)
In addition, the School of Law offers joint degrees with several other programs within the university, and the Pittsburgh Council on Higher Education.
- JD/MPA, Law and Urban and Public Administration (GSPIA)
- JD/MPIA, Law and International Affairs (GSPIA)
- JD/MID, Law and International Development (GSPIA)
- JD/MBA, Law and Business Administration (Katz)
- JD/MPH, Law and Public Health (GSPH)
- JD/MA, Law and Bioethics (GSPH)
- JD/MBA, Law and Business Administration (Carnegie Mellon Tepper School of Business)
- JD/MS, Law and Public Policy and Management (Carnegie Mellon Heinz College)
- JD/MAM, Law and Arts Management (Carnegie Mellon Heinz College)
- The John P. Gismondi Civil Litigation Certificate Program
- Environmental Law, Science and Policy
- Health Law
- Intellectual Property and Technology Law
- International and Comparative Law
- Disability Studies
- Law and Entrepreneurship
- Washington, D.C. Externship Program
Pitt Law Center for International Legal Education
Pitt Law offers area studies in the following international legal systems:
- Asian Studies
- Global Studies
- Latin American Studies
- Russia and Eastern European Studies
- Western European Studies
These area studies serve to supplement the study of International Law, in addition to providing Pitt Law students with the opportunity to pursue careers abroad.
Admissions to the University of Pittsburgh School of Law are conducted on a rolling basis, with an acceptance rate of slightly less than 30%. The median LSAT range for the class of 2011 was 158-161, and a median GPA range of 3.2-3.65.
Rankings and Honors
- Pitt Law is ranked 91st out of 184 law schools by U.S. News & World Report
- Pitt Law is ranked 63rd by the Law School 100
- Pitt Law is ranked among the top 12 public U.S. law schools by QS World University Rankings
- Pitt's Health Law program is ranked 13th by USN&WR
- Pitt's Intellectual Property program is ranked 28th by USN&WR
- Pitt's faculty is ranked 21st in terms of scholarly impact by the Princeton Review
- One of only 80 law schools to be a member of Order of the Coif
Life after Pitt Law
Pitt Law boasts a strong nationwide alumni network, affording strong career prospects for its graduates. 79% of Pitt law grads are employed within 9 months of graduation, with an average private sector salary of $95,000.
Pitt law grads find employment in numerous fields:
- 55% in private practice (12% in NLJ250 Firms)
- 11% in judicial clerkships
- 4% in academia
- 17% in business
- 8% in government
- 5% in public interest
The University of Pittsburgh School of Law has several clinical programs, which allow law students to gain practical experience as lawyers before graduating from law school. The following clinics are currently offered by the School of Law:
- Tax Clinic
- Family Law Clinic
- Environmental Law Clinic
- Community and Economic Development Clinic
- Health Law Clinic
- Elder Law Clinic
- Immigration Law Clinic
Pitt Law is home to several student-edited legal journals, including the Pittsburgh Law Review, which is one of the 40 most-cited law reviews in the country, according to Chicago-Kent Law Review's 1996 Faculty Scholarship Survey . The following journals are all publications of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.
- University of Pittsburgh Law Review
- Journal of Law and Commerce
- Pittsburgh Tax Review
- Pittsburgh Journal of Technology Law & Policy
- Pittsburgh Journal of Environmental and Public Health Law
JURIST is the world's only law school-based comprehensive legal news and research service. Its professionally-trained staff of law faculty and law students report and research the latest legal developments in real time for members of the legal community and the public at large. JURIST covers legal news stories based on their substantive importance rather than on their mass-market or commercial appeal.
- Barco Law Building - Pitt Law School is housed in the six-story Barco Law Building on Forbes Avenue, located on the main campus of the University of Pittsburgh.
- Barco Law Library - The Law Library is housed on the third, fourth, and fifth floors of the Barco Law Building. The library was renovated in 2004 , and the current collection numbers some 450,000 volumes and volume equivalents and has a seating capacity, in both the individual carrels and in private reading areas, of over 400. In addition, located within several blocks of the Law Building are Hillman Library, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, and several special libraries of the University, including the business, medical, and public and international affairs libraries.
- Teplitz Memorial Moot Courtroom - Located on the ground floor, the moot courtroom, named for the late Benjamin H. Teplitz, includes a seven-seat judges' bench, jury and press boxes, counselors' tables, judges' chambers, and a jury room. It is used primarily by trial tactics classes and by the growing number of moot court programs. It is equipped to handle special sessions of the Commonwealth and Federal Appellate Courts and hearings before various administrative tribunals.
- Cathedral of Learning – The tallest academic building in the United States, and the second tallest in the world, the Cathedral of Learning is the centerpiece of the University of Pittsburgh. Before the construction of the Barco Law Building, the law school was located in the Cathedral. Inside the neo-Gothic structure is a large foyer conducive to study, and several stories of office buildings and classrooms. It is also home to the Nationality Rooms which celebrates the world's cultures by designing classrooms based on architecture of various regions and cultures around the globe.
- Other design features of the Law Building include a pedestrian bridge connecting the School of Law with Litchfield Towers dormitories, Lawrence Hall, and Wesley W. Posvar Hall.
- David A. Reed - (1903) - U.S. Senator (1922–1935)
- James H. Duff - (1907) - Pennsylvania Governor (1947–1951), U.S. Senator (1951–1957)
- Joseph H. Thompson (1908) - Medal of Honor Recipient, College Football Hall of Fame player and coach, Pennsylvania State Senator (1913–16)
- Harmar D. Denny, Jr. - (1911) - U.S. Representative (1951–1953)
- Harry Allison Estep - (1913) - U.S. Representative (1927–1933)
- William Corbett - 2nd Secretary of Guam (1953–1956) and the 3rd Civilian Governor of Guam (1956)
- Homer S. Brown - (1923) - Judge, civil and political rights activist, elected to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives (1934–1950)
- James A. Wright - (1927) - U.S. Representative (1941–1945)
- Earl Chudoff - (1932) - U.S. Representative (1949–1958)
- George D. Lockhart - (1935) - Founder of Kirkpatrick & Lockhart Preston Gates Ellis LLP, K&L Gates
- Ruggero J. Aldisert - (1947) - U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit 1968-1986
- K. Leroy Irvis - (1953) - first African American to serve as a speaker of the house (Pennsylvania) in any state legislature in the United States since Reconstruction. 
- Derrick Bell - (1957) - First tenured black professor at Harvard Law School
- Dick Thornburgh - (1957) - Pennsylvania Governor (1979–1987), U.S. Attorney General (1988–1991)
- Orrin Hatch - (1962) - U.S. Senator (1976–present)
- Cyril Wecht - (1962) - American forensic pathologist
- Joseph "Chip" Yablonski - (1965) - Attorney, NFL Players Association; son of murdered labor leader Joseph Yablonski
- Edgar Snyder - (1966) - Prominent personal injury attorney, Pennsylvania "Super Lawyer"
- Mary Jo White - (1967) - Pennsylvania State Senator
- Ralph J. Cappy - (1968) - Justice (1990–2008) and Chief Justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court (2003–2008)
- Dennis Unkovic — (1973) — International business advisor, partner at Meyer, Unkovic & Scott and author of six books
- Q. Todd Dickinson - (1977) - former Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) (1999–2001); current Executive Director of the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA)
- Susan Richard Nelson - (1978) - Judge for the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota
- Gerald T. Hathaway - (1979) Father of Anne Hathaway
- Mark R. Hornak - (1981) - Judge for the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
- Debra Todd - (1982) - Justice on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court (2007–present)
- Tom Feeney - (1983) - U.S. Representative (2003–2009)
- Melissa Hart - (1987) - U.S. Representative (2001–2007)
- Mary Beth Buchanan - (1987) - United States Attorney for Western Pennsylvania (2001–2009)
- Linda Drane Burdick - (1989) - Chief Assistant State Attorney at the Orange and Osceola County State Attorney's Office in Orlando, Florida. She was the lead prosecutor on the State of Florida vs. Casey Anthony case.
- Dan Onorato - (1989) - Chief executive of Allegheny County (2003–present)
- Pavel Astakhov - (2002) - Children's Ombudsman of Russia (2009–present)
Deans of the Law School
- John Douglass Shafer, 1895–1920
- Alexander Marshall Thompson, 1920–1940
- Eugene Allen Gilmore, 1940–1942
- Judson Adams Crane, 1942–1949
- Charles Bernard Nutting, 1949–1951
- Judson Adams Crane (Acting Dean), 1951–1952
- Brainerd Currie, 1952–1953
- Arthur Larson (on leave of absence 1954-56), 1953–1956
- Charles Wilson Taintor II (Acting Dean), 1954–1957
- Thomas McIntyre Cooley II, 1957–1965
- William Edward Sell, Chairman, Administrative Committee, 1965–1966; Dean, 1966–1977
- John E. Murray, Jr., 1977–1984
- Richard J. Pierce, Jr., 1984–1985
- Mark A. Nordenberg, 1985-1993 (Currently University Chancellor)
- Richard H. Seeburger (Interim Dean), 1993–1994
- Peter M. Shane, 1994–1998
- David J. Herring, 1998-2005
- Mary A. Crossley, 2005-2012
- William M. Carter Jr., 2012-present
- George Thornton Fleming, History of Pittsburgh and Environs, from Prehistoric Days to the Beginning, 1922, American Historical Society, New York, pg 364
- Agnes Lynch Starrett, Through one hundred and fifty years: the University of Pittsburgh, 1937, University of Pittsburgh Press, pg. 335-36, accessdate=2009-04-05
- Agnes Lynch Starrett, Through one hundred and fifty years: the University of Pittsburgh, 1937, University of Pittsburgh Press, pg. 336-38, accessdate=2009-04-05
- Agnes Lynch Starrett, Through one hundred and fifty years: the University of Pittsburgh, 1937, University of Pittsburgh Press, pg. 339-343, accessdate=2009-04-05
- Agnes Lynch Starrett, Through one hundred and fifty years: the University of Pittsburgh, 1937, University of Pittsburgh Press, pg. 347, accessdate=2009-04-05
- Agnes Lynch Starrett, Through one hundred and fifty years: the University of Pittsburgh, 1937, University of Pittsburgh Press, pg. 352, accessdate=2009-04-05
- Robert C. Alberts, Pitt :the story of the University of Pittsburgh, 1787-1987, University of Pittsburgh Press, 1986, page 406, accessdate=2009-04-05
- "The Princeton Review: University of Pittsburgh School of Law". The Princeton Review. Retrieved 2009-08-21.
- "David A. Reed". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "James H. Duff". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Joseph H. Thompson". The Pittsburgh Record (University of Pittsburgh) 2 (3): 222. April 1928. Retrieved February 23, 2013.
- "Harmar D. Denny, Jr". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Harry Allison Estep". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Law". The Alumni News Review (University of Pittsburgh) 12 (1): 6. October 1957. Retrieved February 23, 2013.
- "Pitt In The Election". University of Pittsburgh Alumni Review (General Alumni Association of the University of Pittsburgh) 5 (3). December 1938. Retrieved February 23, 2013.
- "James A. Wright". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Earl Chudoff". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Members of Distinction". Alumni Times (University of Pittsburgh Office of Development and Alumni Affairs) 13 (3): 55. Autumn 1981. Retrieved February 23, 2013.
- "Ruggero J. Aldisert". Federal Judicial Center. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "K. Leroy Irvis". The New York Times Company. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Derrick Bell". The President and Fellows of Harvard College. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Dick Thornburgh". Notable Names Data Base. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Orrin Hatch". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Class Notes". Pitt Magazine (University of Pittsburgh). Winter 2010. Retrieved February 23, 2013.
- 1965 University of Pittsburgh Commencement. University of Pittsburgh. June 7, 1965. p. 31. Retrieved February 26, 2013.
- "Edgar Snyder". linkedin corporation. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Mary Jo White". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Ralph J. Cappy". whoislaw.info. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Dennis Unkovic". Zoom Information, Inc. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- Dickinson's bio from the Intellectual Property Owners Association
- "Susan Richard Nelson". Federal Judicial Center. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- "Gerald T. Hathaway at Paley Center Event, NYC". Pitt Law Magazine (Office of the Dean and the Office of Development and Alumni Affairs, University of Pittsburgh School of Law). Fall 2008. Retrieved February 26, 2013.
- "Mark R. Hornak". Federal Judicial Center. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- "Debra Todd". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- "Tom Feeney". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- "Melissa Hart". Notable Names Data Base. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- "Mary Beth Buchanan". Notable Names Data Base. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- Article (2012-05-31). "Iron Lady | Orlando Home & Leisure". Ohlmag.com. Retrieved 2012-08-18. Unknown parameter
- "Dan Onorato". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
- "Pavel A. Astakhov". Official website of the Children's Rights Commissioner for the President of the Russian Federation. Retrieved 7 March 2012.