LJWorld.com weblogs Heard on the Hill

With $80,000 average debt and 83.1 percent employed, KU is in top 20 of 'Best Value' law schools; other recent KU rankings


With 83.1 percent of graduates employed and bearing an average of $80,884 in student debt, the University of Kansas School of Law ranks No. 17 on a new national list of Best Value Law Schools.

National Jurist’s PreLaw magazine recently published its annual rankings highlighting schools “where graduates have excellent chances of passing the bar and getting a legal job without taking on a ton of debt,” according to the article. The new rankings were based on American Bar Association employment statistics for the class of 2015, as well as other 2015 data sources. Below the top 20, another 38 law schools were given grades of “A-” or “B+” in the article.

This is the third consecutive year the KU law school has made the top 20 in National Jurist’s “Best Value” list, according to a KU news release. It also noted that more than 75 percent of the incoming class receives scholarships and that U.S. News ranked KU Law 30th in the nation among law schools whose graduates finish school with the least debt.

KU dean of law Stephen Mazza said in KU’s news release: “We provide an outstanding legal education with ample opportunities for students to explore different practice areas through hands-on clinics and field placements. KU Law ranks among the top 25 percent of all law schools for employment, and our graduates are able to choose careers that aren’t defined by excessive financial burdens."

A few other KU rankings and ratings I’ve come across lately:

Students move along Jayhawk Boulevard on the KU campus between classes on Wednesday January 27, 2016.

Students move along Jayhawk Boulevard on the KU campus between classes on Wednesday January 27, 2016. by Richard Gwin

• Grads going into family medicine: Among U.S. medical schools, the KU School of Medicine has the second most graduates — 17.8 percent — who were family medicine residents in 2015, according to a new American Academy of Family Physicians study, based on averages from the past three years.

This ranking is important and good, according to an American Academy of Family Physicians article, because medical schools are still underproducing family physicians.

Study corresponding author Stan Kozakowski, director of the academy’s Division of Medical Education, said in the article: “This annual study is important because it represents one outcome measure of the efforts made by U.S. medical schools to produce family physicians ... Our intention is to spark curiosity at a local level. We want state leaders to begin conversations about all their medical schools so they can learn from each other and try different approaches."

• Honors Program: The KU Honors Program is one of 11 universities nationwide to receive a “Five Mortarboard” rating (the highest possible) in “Inside Honors: Ratings and Reviews of Sixty Public University Honors Programs,” published in print Oct. 1. According to a KU news release, the program has been top rated in the publication’s past three editions.

• Online doctoral programs: Guide to Online Schools has published (online) a “Top Online Colleges” list for 2017. KU is No. 3 of “the top 25 online colleges offering degrees at the doctoral level,” based on affordability and academic quality. Available programs listed are “Doctor of Occupational Therapy,” “Doctorate in Nursing Practice” and “PhD in Nursing.”

• Sexual health: KU moved up — from 83 to 80 of 140 schools — on this year's Trojan condoms and Sperling’s BestPlaces sexual health “report card,” The University Daily Kansan reports. A KU Health Education Resource Office representative told the Kansan that adding free HIV/STI testing opportunities and the office’s Friday “condom sense” educational programming probably contributed.

— I’m the Journal-World’s KU and higher ed reporter. See all the newspaper’s KU coverage here. Reach me by email at sshepherd@ljworld.com, by phone at 832-7187, on Twitter @saramarieshep or via Facebook at Facebook.com/SaraShepherdNews.


Bob Forer 1 year, 6 months ago

80K in debt????

Times sure have changed. When I went to law school tuition was less than 1K per semester. I lived at home and was able to get a pretty decent legal education at minimal cost.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.