Where to Get Your JD, ASAP

Northwestern to join ranks of universities offering 2-year law degree program
By Green Point,  Newser User
Posted Jul 24, 2008 8:02 PM CDT
A first-year associate at an elite law firm earns about $150,000. But critics of the two-year program say the graduates will have less job opportunities.   ((c) sergis blog)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – Northwestern University’s law school will offer its JD program, normally a 3-year commitment, in 2 years, a move designed to increase the school's competitive edge and respond to critics who say students with jobs lined up coast through their final year. Northwestern isn't pioneering the approach, but as the first top-tier school to offer a shortened program, other elite universities may follow, Time reports.

The tuition fees for the accelerated program, which begins in May 2009, will likely equal the 3-year rate—about $128,000—with the true savings being "the extra year of salary students make by getting out into the marketplace faster," said the dean. Critics warn of mass-produced, low-quality lawyers, with one noting, "Northwestern gets more tuition with less teaching."