In April 2017, Colorado Law reported post-graduation employment data for its class of 2016 to the American Bar Association (ABA) and the National Association for Law Placement (NALP). A detailed description of the employment outcomes and salaries for the class of 2016 appears below.
You may review a summary of the employment outcomes of the class of 2016 by clicking on "Class of 2016 ABA Employment Summary" to the right. The “Class of 2016 NALP Employment Summary” will be uploaded later this summer.
Of the 184 graduates in the Colorado Law class of 2016, 89 percent (164 graduates) reported employment ten months after graduation (March 15, 2017):
Five members of the class of 2016 reported accepting jobs before March 15, but did not start their employment until April 3. In accordance with ABA and NALP rules, none of the five are counted as employed. Adding them to our current job totals, along with a sixth graduate who accepted a job in early April, brings the percentage of those employed in full-time law or law-related jobs that last one year or more to 79%, and overall employment to 92% as of April 15, 2017.
Post-graduate employment information for the Colorado Law class of 2016 was reported to the ABA and NALP in April 2017 and will be reported to U.S. News in December 2017 (outcomes as of ten months after graduation, March 15, 2017):
* Nine of the 164 employed graduates are receiving funding from Colorado Law's post-graduate public service fellowship program for work with judges, government agencies, and public interest organizations.
Consistent with transparency in reporting, we calculate overall employment percentages by dividing the number of employed graduates by the total number of graduates. This calculation's denominator includes graduates who are not seeking employment (one graduate), and those from whom no employment status could be determined (four graduates).
103 / 184 = 55.9 % employed at graduation
164 / 184 = 89.1 % employed ten months after graduation
On March 14, 2017 U.S. News & World Report released its current law school rankings, which include employment statistics from the class of 2015. For both the “employed at graduation” and “employed ten months after graduation” categories, U.S. News counts only those graduates with full-time jobs that last at least one year for which bar passage was required, or a JD degree was an advantage.
Utilizing the U.S. News formula, 52.2 percent (96/184) of our 2016 graduates had full-time, long-term jobs at graduation for which bar passage was required or a JD degree was an advantage. This compares to 55.3 percent in the class of 2015 and 50.3 percent in the class of 2014. Offers for some government and public interest positions, such as those with district attorney offices and city attorney offices, are typically made after graduates pass the bar exam, five months after graduation.
Of our 2016 graduates 75.5 percent (139/184) had full-time, long-term jobs ten months after graduation for which bar passage was required, or a JD degree was an advantage. This compares to 83.6 percent in the class of 2015 and 78.8 percent in the class of 2014.
The timing of Colorado Law students accepting post-graduate employment has followed a distinct pattern over the last three years. By spring break, about one-third of students had reported a post-graduate position. By graduation, approximately half of graduates were employed. While some graduates found positions over the summer, it was more common for graduates to report accepting jobs in September and October.
By mid-December of the last three years, approximately 90 percent of our graduates had found jobs. Below are the percentages of students known to be employed on each of the following dates. Note that subsequent surveys revealed a higher percentage of graduates to be employed than we knew of at graduation.
|April 1, 2016||41%|
|January 1, 2017||89%|
Thirty-seven percent of employed 2016 graduates (60/164) are working for law firms in private practice ten months after graduation, with 88 percent of these graduates in full-time, long-term positions. Twenty-two of these 2016 graduates reported employment at National Law Journal 500 law firms ten months after graduation while another five will join NLJ 500 firms after their judicial clerkships. These twenty seven graduates account for 17% of all employed 2016 graduates, compared to 13% for the class of 2015.
Thirteen percent of employed 2016 graduates (22/164) accepted judicial clerkships, which includes 3 federal court clerkships, 8 state appellate court clerkships, and 11 state trial court clerkships. Seven of the 9 post-graduate fellows were employed with judges, so there were 29 graduates working with judges ten months after graduation.
Excluding fellows receiving school funding, 16 percent of employed 2016 graduates (26/164) are working in government, and another 10 percent (16/164) are in public interest positions, including public defender offices and non-profit organizations.
Finally, 15 percent of employed 2016 graduates (25/164) accepted positions with businesses other than law firms including Ardent Mills, Century Health, DISH Network, Elevate Services, Molson Coors, and VMWare.
Of the 164 employed graduates from the class of 2016, 160 reported a salary. This represents 98 percent of employed graduates. These salaries represent 139 long-term jobs and 21 short-term jobs. One hundred and forty-five of the positions are full-time, and 15 are part-time.
To maintain consistency with the 2016 NALP employment report, below we report only salaries from full-time, long-term positions held by members of the class of 2016 as of March 15, 2017. We received salaries from 98% of graduates employed in full-time, long-term positions (136 salaries).
The median salary reported was $60,000 and the mean was $70,894. Twenty-five percent of the graduates reporting salaries earn $80,000 or more per year, and 25 percent of the graduates reporting salaries earn $50,000 or less per year.
With respect to salaries, our public service-focused programs, including criminal defense, are strong. The Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP) is available for many graduates working in public service jobs, and the program awarded 48 qualified applicants with $5,500 awards during the 2016-17 academic year.
The following charts provide detailed information about the employment outcomes for the Colorado Law class of 2016, including the number of graduates working in the private sector versus the public sector, the employment categories in which graduates were working ten months after graduation and finally, the number of graduates working in positions that require a law degree.
|Sector||# Reporting||Full/ Part Time||Long/ Short Term||# FT/LT Employed Reporting Salary||% FT/LT Employed Reporting Salary||Median||Mean||25th Percentile||75th Percentile|
The 9 graduates in the public sector reporting part-time/short-term employment are employed as post-graduate public service fellows.
|Category||# Reporting||Full/ Part Time||Long/ Short Term||# FT/LT Employed Reporting Salary||% FT/LT Employed Reporting Salary||Median||Mean||25th Percentile||75th Percentile|
Seven of the 9 post-graduate part-time fellows are employed with judges, 1 is with a government agency, and 1 is with a public interest organization.
|Type||# Reporting||Full/ Part Time||Long/ Short Term||# FT/LT Reporting Salary||% FT/LT Reporting Salary||Median||Mean||25th Percentile||75th Percentile|
“Bar Required” jobs require that the graduate pass the bar and be licensed to practice law. These jobs may be in a law firm, business, government, or non-profit setting. This category also includes judicial clerks and positions that require the graduate to pass the bar after being hired.
“JD Advantage” jobs include those for which the employer sought an individual with a JD, and perhaps even required a JD, but the job itself does not require bar passage, an active law license, or involve practicing law.
An "Other Professional" position is one that requires professional skills or training but in which a JD is neither required nor particularly applicable, such as accountant, teacher, business manager, nurse, etc.
A "Non-Professional" position is one that does not require any special professional skills or training.
|Region||# Student Reported||% of Reported|
|New England (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT)||2||1.2%|
|Mid-Atlantic (NJ, NY, PA)||0||-|
|North East Central (IL, IN, MI, OH, WI)||0||-|
|North West Central (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD)||1||0.6%|
|South Atlantic (DE, DC, FL, GA, MD, NC, SC, VA, WV)||6||3.7%|
|South East Central (AL, KY, MS, TN)||1||0.6%|
|South West Central (AR, LA, OK, TX)||7||4.3%|
|Mountain (AZ, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, UT, WY)||137||83.5%|
|Pacific (AK, CA, HI, OR, WA)||9||5.5%|
One hundred and thirty-three of the 137 graduates reporting employment in the Mountain region were employed in Colorado, representing 81 percent of employed graduates.
(Duplicate employers have been removed. Out of state employers have been marked.)