UofM Law School Ranked 13th for African American Students by preLaw Magazine

February 5, 2020 - The University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law has been ranked the 13th best law school nationally for African American students in the latest issue of preLaw magazine. Memphis Law also received an A- for its Trial Advocacy program and was recognized for its out-of-state tuition reduction.

“Memphis Law offers one of the oldest and most successful pre-admission programs for diverse applicants in the nation,” said Katharine Schaffzin, dean of the School of Law. “We consistently enroll 1L classes that are 30% diverse. Memphis Law is fortunate to have an Office of Diversity & Inclusion directed by tenured Professor Demetria Frank. Under Professor Frank’s leadership, the law school has actively sought to improve the climate within the law school, while growing the number of student support resources and pipeline programs available to prepare potential diverse law school applicants. 

“The magazine measured our broad advocacy-based curricular offerings, recognized the value of our investment in clinics and externships, noted our successful Moot Court Program and highlighted our certificate in Advocacy. At Memphis Law, we prepare students for practice, and we appreciate this honor recognizing that.”

The Law School has lowered out-of-state student tuition by 25%, making it one of the most affordable law schools in the country. The new tuition structure will take effect in August. The tuition reduction, which caps out-of-state tuition at the 11 credit hours rate and results in the 25% savings in tuition and fees at the 15-hour rate, was approved by the University’s Board of Trustees in December.

preLaw also noted the number of female law school deans hired in 2019, including Schaffzin, who was named the new dean of the UofM Law School last July. The first woman to serve as dean of the law school, Schaffzin has been with the University of Memphis since 2009 and previously served as interim dean of Memphis Law.

“I anticipate our ranking by preLaw Magazine will continue to improve,” said Schaffzin, “as we grow our investment in staff, programs and scholarships supporting diverse students at Memphis Law.”

Last August, the UofM launched the African American Male Academy designed to increase graduation rates among African American male students. Starting in middle school, the initiative will identify, recruit and induct African American males into a culture of inclusive excellence. Through this inclusive excellence model of early exposure to academic and career preparation, peer and faculty mentors, textbooks and educational supplies, and integration into college life, African American male students are set on a path early toward college completion. This will include recruiting students into the law school.

Read more in preLaw here.