Albany Law School

Coordinates: 42°39′08.51″N 73°46′38.40″W / 42.6523639°N 73.7773333°W / 42.6523639; -73.7773333

Albany Law School
Type Private
Established 1851
Dean Alicia Ouellette
Academic staff
33 full-time, 21 part-time
Students 415
Location Albany, New York, USA
Campus Urban

Albany Law School is a private, independent, American Bar Association-accredited law school founded in 1851 in Albany, New York making it the oldest law school in New York. It has an affiliation agreement with University at Albany that includes shared programs. The school is located near New York's highest court, federal courts, the executive branch and the state legislature.[1]


Albany Law School is the oldest independent law school in the United States. It was founded in 1851 by Amos Dean (its dean until 1868), Amasa J. Parker, Ira Harris, and others.[2]

Beginning in 1878, the Albany College of Pharmacy, Albany Law School, Albany Medical College, Dudley Observatory, Graduate College of Union University, and Union College created the loose association today known as Union University. Each member institution has its own governing board, is fiscally independent, and is responsible for its own programs.[3]

Albany Law School has a historically close relationship with the New York Court of Appeals.[4] One of the original members of the court, Greene C. Bronson, helped to found the law school.[5][6] Since that time, Albany Law School alumni have been members of the court nine times with two serving as Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals.[4] In addition, the school hosts the Fund for Modern Courts' Hugh R. Jones Memorial Lecture, which is typically given by a current or former member of the court.

The law school inducted its first permanent female President & Dean, Penelope Andrews, on July 1, 2012. On July 1, 2015, Alicia Ouellette became President & Dean.


Albany Law is the only law school located within New York's Capital District. It is within three miles of the New York State Legislature, New York Court of Appeals, The Appellate Division 3rd Department, the Federal District Court for the Northern District of New York, the New York State Bar Association, several state agencies, and a number of private law firms.

Programs and centers

Albany Law School offers 14 concentrations for J.D. candidates,[7] as well as an L.L.M program,[8] and joint J.D./M.B.A, J.D./M.P.A., J.D./M.R.P., J.D./M.S., and J.D./M.S.W. programs.[9]

Albany Law School is home to several centers of legal study: The Government Law Center, The Center for Excellence in Law Teaching, The Institute of Legal Studies, The Institute for Financial Market Regulation, and The Center for Judicial Process.

In addition, under the auspices of its Law Clinic and Justice Center, Albany Law School operates several public interest clinics. Some of the clinics available include the Health Law, Introduction to Litigation, Low Income Taxpayer, Civil Rights and Disabilities Law, Domestic Violence Prosecution, and Family Violence Litigation.

Albany Law School's Schaffer Law Library holds a collection of more than 730,000 volumes and equivalents,[10] including videotapes of oral arguments before the New York State Court of Appeals dating back to 1989.

Albany Law School is ranked 129th in U.S. News and World Report 2017 ranking of law schools.[11]

Degrees Offered

Albany Law School offers courses and concentrations for the following degree programs: J.D. Three-year program, J.D. Two-year accelerated program, LL.M. (Master of Laws), LL.M. for International Law Graduates, M.S. in Legal Studies with Concentrations in: Cyber-security & Data Privacy (online only), Government Affairs & Advocacy, Health Law & Health Law Compliance, and Social Entrepreneurship.

Joint degrees: J.D./ Master of Business Administration with The College of Saint Rose, Union Graduate College, The Sage Colleges or University at Albany, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, J.D./ Master of Business Administration in Healthcare Management with Union Graduate College, J.D./ Master of Science in Bioethics with Alden March Bioethics Institute at Albany Medical College; or Union Graduate College and Mount Sinai School of Medicine, J.D./ Master of Public Administration & Policy with University at Albany, J.D./ Master of Social Work with University at Albany, J.D./ Master of Regional Planning with University at Albany, J.D./ Master of Science, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Albany Law School has an affiliation agreement with University at Albany that includes shared programs, and access for students and faculty to learn from one another.[12]

Law journals

In 1875, Albany Law published the nation's first student-edited legal periodical, the Albany Law School Journal, which existed for only one academic year before being discontinued.[13] Currently, the school publishes three journals, which are listed in order of their founding and combined national ranking:

Notable faculty

Full Time faculty:

Adjunct faculty:

Former faculty:

Notable alumni

Albany Law School has numerous notable alumni. It is one of only twelve law schools in the United States to have graduated two or more justices of the United States Supreme Court: Robert H. Jackson[16] and David Josiah Brewer.[17] Nine judges of the New York State Court of Appeals, United States President William McKinley, current New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly, and over a dozen members of the United States Congress can also call Albany Law School their alma mater. The first woman admitted to the New York State Bar, Kate Stoneman, and the first African American man to graduate from law school in New York State, James Campbell Matthews, also both attended Albany Law School.[18]

Other notable alumni include: Richard D. Parsons '71, Former Chairman, Citigroup, Lawrence H. Cooke '39, Former Chief Judge of New York State, Victoria A. Graffeo '77, Former Associate Judge, New York State Court of Appeals, Leslie Stein '81, Associate Judge, New York State Court of Appeals, Thomas J. Vilsack '75, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture; Former Governor of Iowa, David Miranda '88, President-elect, New York State Bar Association; Partner, Heslin Rothenberg Farley and Mesiti, Stephen P. Younger '82, Former New York State Bar Association President; Partner, Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP [19]


Albany Law School was one of more than a dozen law schools sued by some of their alumni (three Albany Law graduates filed the suit[20]) in 2011 and 2012.[21] On February 1, 2012, it was named as a defendant in a class action alleging fraudulent misrepresentation of its published employment statistics relating to past graduates. The case was dismissed in January 2013.[22]


According to Albany Law School's 2015 ABA-required disclosures, 65.6% of the Class of 2015 [23] obtained full-time, long-term, JD-required employment ten months after graduation.[24] 150 of 159 graduates obtained full-time, long-term work and 9 graduates obtained either part-time short-term, part-time long-term or full-time short-term positions.[25] Albany Law School's 2015 Law School Transparency under-employment score is 18%, indicating the percentage of the Class of 2015 unemployed, pursuing an additional degree, or working in a non-professional, short-term, or part-time job nine months after graduation.[23]

preLaw magazine ranked Albany Law number 1 for government careers, citing its "A" grades in curriculum and employment, and ranked the school number 6 for public defender and prosecutor jobs, in its winter 2016 issue.[26]

Status Full Time Long Term Full Time Short Term Part Time Long Term Part Time Short Term Number
Employed J.D. Advantage 25 5 2 1 33
Employed Professional Position 3 0 0 0 3
Employed Non-Professional Position 0 0 0 0 0
Employed Law School/University Funded 3 0 0 0 0
Employed Indeterminable 0 0 0 0 0
Graduate Degree Full Time 2
Unemployed Start Date Deferred 0
Unemployed Not Seeking 0
Unemployed Seeking 22
Employment Status Unknown 0
Total Graduates 183

Employment Summary for 2015 Graduates [25]


The total cost of attendance (indicating the cost of tuition, fees, and living expenses) at Albany Law School for the 2014-2015 academic year is $59,728.[27] The Law School Transparency estimated debt-financed cost of attendance for three years is $234,466.[28] Tuition is $43,248. Last year the school awarded $7 million in financial aid, and over 60% of first-year students received merit scholarships.[29]

See also


  2. Elizabeth K. Allen; Diana S. Waite (2000). Albany Law School 1851–2001: A Tradition of change. Albany Law School. pp. 3, 14–16.
  3. "Union University - Union College". Retrieved 2015-06-08.
  4. 1 2 Jonathan Lippman, The New York Court of Appeals, Albany Law School, and The Albany Law Review: Institutions Dedicated to the Evolution of the Law in New York State, 75 Alb. L. Rev. 9, 10 (2011/2012)
  5. Kevin T. Bezio, Greene C. Bronson, in The Judges of the New York Court of Appeals: A Biographical History 11–15 (Albert M. Rosenblatt ed. 2007)
  6. Elizabeth K. Allen; Diana S. Waite (2000). Albany Law School 1851–2001: A Tradition of change. Albany Law School. p. 3.
  7. "Concentrations". Albany Law School. Retrieved 7 February 2014.
  8. "Master of Laws". Albany Law School. Retrieved 7 February 2014.
  9. "Joint Degree Programs". Albany Law School. Retrieved 7 February 2014.
  10. "Schaffer Law Library". Albany Law School. Retrieved 7 February 2014.
  11. "Albany Law School". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved 18 May 2016.
  13. Jonathan Lippman, The New York Court of Appeals, Albany Law School, and The Albany Law Review: Institutions Dedicated to the Evolution of the Law in New York State, 75 Alb. L. Rev. 9, 10 (2011/2012); Spencer M. Ritchie, The Journal's Journey: a History of the Mississippi Law Journal, 81 Miss. L. J. 1527, 1528 n.7 (2012); Whit Pierce & Anne Reuben, The Law Review is Dead; Long Live the Law Review: A Closer Look at the Declining Judicial Citation of Legal Scholarship, 45 Wake Forest L. Rev. 1185, 1188 n.17 (2010); Michael Closen & Robert Dzielak, The History and Influence of the Law Review Institution, 30 Akron L. Rev. 15, 34 (1996); Michael Swygert & Jon Bruce, The Historical Origins, Founding, and Early Development of Student-Edited Law Reviews, 36 Hastings L. J. 739, 764 (1986).
  14. "Law school leader is Cape Town-bound". The Albany Times Union. 2 July 2015. Retrieved 3 July 2015.
  15. Gunther, Gerald (1994), Learned Hand: The Man and the Judge 61, New York: Knopf, ISBN 978-0-394-58807-0.
  16. Barrett,, John Q. (2005). "Albany in the Life Trajectory of Robert H. Jackson". Albany Law Review. 68: 529.
  17. "David J. Brewer, 1890-1910". The Supreme Court Historical Society. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  18. Smith, Jr., J. Clay (1999). Emancipation: The Making of the Black Lawyer 1841–1914. p. 421.
  21. Neil, Martha (February 1, 2012). "12 More Law Schools Sued Over Reporting of Law Grad Employment and Salary Stats". National Law Journal. Retrieved 7 February 2014.
  22. Wiessner, Daniel (January 4, 2013). "Judge dismisses employment data suit against Albany Law School". Reuters.
  23. 1 2
  24. "Employment Summary for 2014 Graduates" (PDF). Albany Law School. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  25. 1 2
  26. preLaw magazine
  27. "Cost of Attendance".
  28. "Albany Law School Profile".
  29. "Class of 2017 Profile". Albany Law School.
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