613 South Henry Street, Williamsburg, VA 23185 | Google Map

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Founded 1779 | ABA Accredited 1932

Established in 1779, William & Mary Law School is the nationâ??s oldest law school. Indeed, its history dates back to only three years after the execution of the Declaration of Independence. The law school was founded when the College of William & Mary's Board of Visitors appointed George Wythe as the nationâ??s first law professor at the urging of former U.S. President Thomas Jefferson, who was governor of Virginia at the time. â??Besides Jefferson, Wythe at one time or another taught John Marshall, James Monroe, Edmund Randolph, and Henry Clay. Thus the mind of George Wythe, acting through those whom he had trained, dominated the policies of this republic for fully fifty years, and is still a potent force.â?? (William & Mary Website)

The school recently ranked among the top 28 schools in the nation according to the U.S. News & World Report. The school offers a broad curriculum. In addition to the traditional coursework, every first-year law student is assigned to a "law firm" as part of William & Maryâ??s two-year Legal Skills Program. During their second and third years, students choose from a diverse array of more than 100 courses and other academic opportunities. William & Mary offers a number of clinical programs in areas ranging from domestic violence to federal tax practice, varied externship opportunities, joint degrees, and study abroad programs.

The law school is also home to a number of prominent research centers and programs such as the Institute of Bill of Rights Law, which addresses issues critical to the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. In addition, the schoolâ??s Election Law program was created to assist state court judges involved with difficult election law disputes. The school also maintains a Human Rights and National Security Law Program that presents students with the opportunity to examine the relationship between national defense and the protection of civil rights.

Finally, the school is located in the historic college town of Williamsburg, VA. Its location gives students access to facilities of interest such as the National Center for State Courts, Colonial Williamsburg, and the Courtroom 21 Program.

NOTABLE ALUMNI

Honorable Haldane Robert Mayer, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit Gregory Paw, Partner at Pepper Hamilton Eric Cantor, U.S. House of Representatives Henry C. Wolf, Chief Financial Officer and Vice Chairman, Norfolk Southern Corporation Jerry W. Kilgore, Former Attorney General of Virginia

Rankings

POLL OF POLLS#27

SELECTIVITY RANK#24

About Rankings Data

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