OBABL Honors Bowen as Top School for Black Students

The UALR William H. Bowen School of Law has been named one of the southern region’s Top Five Law Schools for Black Students, according to On Being A Black Lawyer (OBABL), a blog and media enterprise begun in 2008 to promote the causes and contributions of African-American attorneys.

The rankings are based on the following information about each ABA-accredited school in the country:

  • Cost – Cost is measured by the 2011 annual tuition data provided by the American Bar Association (ABA) and Law School Admissions Council (LSAC). For public law schools, resident-tuition figures are used.
  • Placement – Employment rates are based on the number of JD graduates working full time in a legal or JD-advantaged job. Data is adjusted to take into account the percentage of black law students at each law school.
  • Distinguished black alumni – This figure incorporates schools attended by OBABL’s Power 100. We also consult law school websites and other sources.
  • Selectivity – This measure combines LSAT and GPA data from the 2011 ABA and LSAC figures for all full-time and part-time entering JD students.
  • Black student population – Figures from the 2011 annual demographic data provided by the ABA and LSAC.
  • Local legal job access – This measure incorporates the number of state and district courts, appeals courts, federal public defender offices, state capitals, and National Law Journal 250 firms.
  • Local cost of living – This measure uses the Kiplinger Index to determine the cost of living in law school cities.
  • Local black population – This measure uses the 2010 U.S. Census to determine the percentage of African Americans in law school cities.

“Our achievement in bringing diversity to our school and the legal field is a part of Bowen’s dedication to providing access to justice to underserved populations,” said Interim Dean Paula Casey. “We’re proud of being named to this prestigious list because it incorporates some of the things we’ve always been known for – among them our location in Arkansas’ capital city and our cost-effective tuition for students.”

In addition to these measures, to be named a top regional school, OBABL ensures that the black law student population percentage reflects or exceeds one-third of the state’s black population percentage. At recognized schools, tuition cannot exceed $20,000 in the midwest, southern, and mountain regions.

The complete list of law schools will be featured in The Black Student’s Guide to Law Schools, which will be published in October.

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