Tuition: For the 2010-2011 school year, a full-time student at Willamette Law will pay $31,050 in tuition. Books and the SBA fee bring school-related costs to $32,590. Remember, this is an “investment” in oneself - and (supposedly) will make one more “marketable.”
Total Cost of Attendance: The commodes estimates that living expenses, i.e. medical, transportation, insurance, room and board, will amount to $14,510 for the nine-month academic year. This would bring the estimated COA to $47,100 for the 2010-2011 academic year.
Seeing that actual law students will have living expenses for twelve months, and not nine months, we will determine a more accurate number. The lazy hags at Willamette did not provide a breakdown of costs, so twelve month living expenses will total $19,347. This would bring the more-accurate, estimated total COA to $50,397.
Ranking: This school is pricey, but its sterling reputation will excuse the high cost of admission, right?!?! Well, according to US News & World Report, Willamette University School of Law is a decrepit fourth tier piece of trash. But at least it is located in lovely Salem, Oregon. Take some solace in that fact.
Supposed Employment Placement Rate and Salary Info: According to “Career Services,” 95 percent of the Class of 2009 secured employment within nine months of graduation. This pertains to those JDs known to be seeking employment. I suppose those from wealthy families or those who have given up hope could not be considered, in this calculation.
The school also maintains that 49% of this class - or at least those known to be looking for work - landed in private practice. The published salary range is $33,000-$110,000 - with a median salary of $60K.
Law School Indebtedness: According to the Webmaster at US News, “Due to the website redesign some links got lost. U.S. News is in the process of restoring these links and plan to have this back up sometime this week.” Just in case they cannot restore the link or do not re-post the figures, I will look for my hard copy.
Faculty and Administrator Pay: Let’s see how well the professoriate at this fourth tier waste pile is doing. For this info, we head to page 34 of WillameTTTTe Univer$iTTTTy’s 2009 Form 990.
Dean Symeon Symeonides “earned” $321,784 in TOTAL COMPENSATION - for 2008. Next, we see that “Roderick and Carol Wendt Chair in Business Law and Director of the Law and Business Program” Peter V. Letsou made $245,916 in TOTAL COMPENSATION, for the same school year - while “professor of law” Kathy Graham raked in a mere $232,742.
The school offered full-tuition scholarships to 0.0% of its students, for the 2005-2006 academic year. Furthermore, only 10.6% received half-tuition scholarships. It will be interesting to see the law school indebtedness for this school’s recent grads - if USN&WR can be bothered to retrieve this info and publish the chart.
On page 13, you can see that the commode had the 7th best Dispute Resolution program - in 2006! This may come in handy, when - as a WillameTTTTe JD - you are negotiating with your landlord to give you another week to come up with rent, and request that he lower the late fees.
Look at these embarrassing garbage programs. You can earn a certificate in "Sustainability Law" or in "International and Comparative Law." That will surely set you apart from the legions of other job applicants, right?!?!
However, if you truly want to distinguish yourself as an elite student, make sure that you write onto the prestigious Willamette Sports Law Journal.
If you prefer that people line up to buy your drinks, laugh at your jokes, and that beautiful woman faint when you enter a room, become a student editor at the Willamette Journal of International Law and Dispute Resolution.
Conclusion: This school is a true diploma mill. Going back to the employment figures, apparently no one from the Class of 2009 landed Biglaw. The school’s cost almost requires that one earn large sums of money - simply to make a positive return on investment. You do not need to incur an additional $100K-$130K of NON-DISCHARGEABLE debt to land a job making $35K-$55K. As hard as it is to believe, some young workers who exhibit initiative and a strong work product are making such sums, without a law degree!