Fordham University School of Law (commonly known as Fordham Law or Fordham Law School) is a part of Fordham University in the United States. The School is located in the Borough of Manhattan in New York City, and is one of eight ABA-approved law schools in that city.
According to the U.S. News & World Report
, 1,516 J.D.
students attend Fordham Law. There are 1,170 are in the Day Division and the rest attend the Evening Division. Fordham Law also offers Master of Laws (LL.M.
) degrees in the following specializations: Banking
, & Finance
Law; International Business & Trade Law; and Intellectual Property & Information Technology Law. Joint degrees are also offered in conjunction with Fordham's other graduate schools, including J.D./M.A.
in International Political Economy
; and J.D./M.S.W. William Treanor
became the ninth dean
of Fordham Law School in 2002, succeeding John Feerick
Founded in 1905, Fordham Law commemorated its Centennial during the 2005-2006 academic year, and capped the year-long celebration with an alumni gala on Ellis Island on September 28, the school's official birthday. The school used the occasion of its Centennial to launch a new fundraising drive in 2005, and in just one year has raised more than $10 million thanks in large part to the more than 100 "Centennial Founders" who each contributed $100,000 or more. As of February 2006, Fordham has met 71% of its Centennial goal of 100,000 hours of collective community service from students, faculty, administrators, and alumni.
According to US News and World Report
, Fordham Law is a top-tier
law school, with a 2008 ranking of 25. Its average of 25th and 75th percentile LSAT
score is 165. It is the highest-ranked law school in New York
state with an evening program.
According to the 2006 AmLaw 100 database from the American Lawyer, Fordham is 9th in placement of graduates into the top 50 firms, 8th in placement for the top 25 firms, and 7th for the top ten firms (Law school graduates at top firms identified through “Martindale Hubbell Listings, All” database of LexisNexis, identifying every attorney from any of top firms who graduated from a particular law school).
Originally located in New York's downtown Financial District, Fordham Law is currently located on the West Side of Manhattan, as part of Fordham University's Lincoln Center campus. The main law school building is named for Benjamin A. Javits (LL.B 1918), brother of Jacob K. Javits. In 1984, the Ned Doyle Building (actually only a new wing) was added. Fordham Law also rents space at 33 West 60th Street, across Columbus Avenue from its main building, for some faculty offices, its law clinic, and administrative offices for the Crowley Program, Admissions, and Financial Aid.
As part of the university's Lincoln Center Master Plan, unveiled in 2005, a new law school building will be completed some time around 2011. The existing building will then be "razed and replaced by a 21-story dormitory" sometime around 2025. The new building is still in the planning stages, with the law school administration holding the first round of focus groups with student organization leaders in March 2006.
Legal writing program
In addition to a traditional J.D. curriculum, Fordham offers an extensive legal writing program, with many course offerings beyond the first year. All legal writing courses are taught by distinguished practitioners serving as adjunct professors
. Last year's adjuncts included a federal judge, several attorneys in high positions in government service, and many partners in large New York firms.
Clinical education is available but not required. Students are selected for clinics via a competitive application process. Fordham students have an opportunity to enroll in clinics following their first year, and after taking the Fundamental Lawyering Skills course. The following clinics were offered to J.D. students in 2006:
- Community Economic Development
- Criminal Defense
- Family Advocacy
- Federal Litigation
- International Justice
- Securities Arbitration
- Tax Litigation
- Urban Policy
Fordham's clinics represent clients as "Lincoln Square Legal Services."
Crowley Program in International Human Rights
The Crowley Program in International Human Rights
, named after the late Professor Joseph R. Crowley, was founded in 1997. It is a highly selective program of study in international human rights law undertaken in the 2L year, culminating in a two-week overseas fact-finding mission in the summer. Students in the program are known as Crowley Scholars. In the fall semester, Crowley Scholars are required to take International Human Rights, a survey course, and are encouraged to take other human rights/international law courses. In the spring, Crowley Scholars take a seminar to prepare them for the summer fact-finding mission. Following the mission, Crowley Scholars assist in writing the mission report, which is later published in the Fordham International Law Journal. The program is overseen by in part by a Crowley Fellow, who serves a one-year adjunct professorship.
Students at Fordham Law publish six law journals. In order of their founding, they are:
In addition, the Stein Center for Ethics and Public Interest Law publishes two newsletters, The Common Good (for the law school community at large) and The Steins (for Stein Scholars).
Public Interest Resource Center
Fordham's Public Interest Resource Center (PIRC) serves as the clearinghouse for student community service and pro bono
work, and hosts 19 student-run organizations, including Habitat for Humanity
, Unemployment Action Center
, Just Democracy
, and others.
The PIRC also runs the competitive Stein Scholars Program in Public Interest Law and Ethics, in which selected students train for a career in the public sphere and receive funding for doing unpaid public interest work. The program is sponsored by the Louis Stein Center for Law and Ethics, which counts among its Board of Advisors several influential people, including Geraldine Ferraro
'60, three sitting judges, and others.
- Thomas Alfano, member of the New York State Assembly (1996-present)
- Cornelius Blackshear, Judge, U.S. Bankruptcy Court (1985-2005); presided over Pan Am and Spiegel bankruptcies
- John Bonacic, New York State Senator
- Kathleen Brown, Senior Advisor, Head of Public Finance, Western Region, Goldman Sachs
- Denny Chin, Judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
- Christopher Cuomo, Emmy Award-winning correspondent for ABC News
- Steven Derounian, member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1953-1965), Justice, NY Supreme Court (1969-1981)
- Francis Edwin Dorn, member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1953-1961)
- Kevin Duffy, Judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
- Claire Eagan, Chief Judge, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma
- Jonathon Edington, class of 2004, murder suspect in the stabbing death of Barry James
- John D. Feerick, Dean, Fordham University School of Law (1982-2002)
- Geraldine Ferraro, member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1979-1985) and first woman Vice Presidential candidate of a major political party
- Jack Ford, co-anchor of Court TV's Banfield & Ford: Courtside, Peabody Award and two-time Emmy Award winner.
- Vito Fossella, member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1997-present)
- Arthur Gonzalez, Judge, U.S. Bankruptcy Court (1995-present); presided over Enron Corporation and WorldCom bankruptcies
- John F. Keenan, Judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
- Paul J. Kelly, Jr., Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
- G. Gordon Liddy, Watergate conspirator, nationally syndicated radio talk show host
- John Mara, President and COO, New York Giants
- Ralph J. Marino, Majority Leader, New York State Senate (1988-1994)
- Joseph M. McLaughlin, Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (1990-present)
- Dave Mejias, Nassau County, New York legislator
- Lara Jill Miller, actress, best known for her role as Samantha "Sam" Kanisky on the TV sitcom Gimme a Break!
- John N. Mitchell, U.S. Attorney General under President Richard Nixon
- K. Michael Moore, Judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida
- William Hughes Mulligan, Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (1971-1981)
- Jerrold Nadler, member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1993-present)
- Walter O'Malley, owner of the Dodgers baseball club who brought Major League Baseball west of the Mississippi by moving the team from Brooklyn, New York to Los Angeles, California.
- Marilyn Hall Patel, Judge, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
- Adam Clayton Powell IV, member of the New York State Assembly (2000-present)
- Loretta A. Preska, Judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
- Thomas Vincent Quinn, member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1949-1951)
- Marie Reilly, former member of Grammy nominated group "Cherish the Ladies" and Riverdance
- Jaime Rios, Judge, Queens County Supreme Court
- Bernard M. Shanley, Deputy Chief of Staff and White House Counsel to President Dwight Eisenhower
- Dean Skelos, Majority Leader of the New York State Senate
- Thomas Suozzi, Nassau County Executive and former 2006 New York gubernatorial candidate
- Mike Sweeney, Emmy Award-winning head writer of Late Night with Conan O'Brien
- Peter Vallone, Jr., Member of the New York City Council (2002-Present)
- Peter Vallone, Sr., first and longtime Speaker of the New York City Council
- Ruth Whitehead Whaley, first female African-American lawyer admitted in New York (1924)
- Malcolm Wilson, Governor of New York (1973-1975)
Fordham Law in popular culture