In April 2018, Colorado Law reported post-graduation employment data for its class of 2017 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 2017 as of ten months after graduation, March 15, 2018, appears below.
How Many Graduates from the Class of 2017 Are Employed?
Consistent with transparency in reporting, we calculate overall employment percentages by dividing the number of employed graduates by the total number of graduates.
- 91% (153/168) of graduates reported employment ten months after graduation (March 15, 2018)
- 84% (141/168) of graduates reported a full-time, long-term (defined as a position that does not have a definite term of less than one year), non-school funded job for which bar passage was required or a JD degree was an advantage. (ranked #40 out of 204 law schools reporting class of 2017 employment outcomes)
- 76% (128/168) of graduates reported a full-time, long-term, non-school funded job for which bar passage was required. (ranked #40)
- 87% (146/168) reported full time jobs. This represents 95% of employed graduates.
- 86% (145/168) reported long-term jobs.
- 58% (97/168) of graduates reported employment at graduation
Class of 2017 graduates ten months after graduation
- Employed = 153*
- Accepted a job before March 15 that starts after March 15 = 3
- Working as a volunteer = 0
- Unemployed and seeking employment = 10
- Unemployed and not seeking employment = 0
- Full-time student = 1
- Unknown = 1
* Five of the 153 employed graduates are receiving funding from Colorado Law's post-graduate public service fellowship program for work with government agencies and public interest organizations.
Three members of the class of 2017 reported accepting jobs before March 15, but did not start their employment until March 16, 19, and 26, respectively. In accordance with ABA and NALP rules, none of these three graduates are counted as employed. Adding them to our current job totals brings the percentage of those employed in full-time law or law-related jobs that last one year or more to 86%, and overall employment to 93% as of April 1, 2018.
U.S. News Employment Statistics
On March 20, 2018 U.S. News & World Report released its current law school rankings, which include employment statistics from the class of 2016. 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, and which are not funded by the law school or university.
Employment statistics utilizing the U.S. News formula at graduation:
- 53.6% (90/168) for the class of 2017
- 52.2% for the class of 2016
- 53.5% for the class of 2015
Employment statistics utilizing the U.S. News formula ten months after graduation:
- 83.9% (141/168) for the class of 2017
- 73.4% for the class of 2016
- 81.1% for the class of 2015
- 35% (53/153) of employed graduates are working in law firms:
- 98% (52/53) of these graduates are in full-time, long-term positions for which bar passage is required.
- 18 of those 53 grads reported employment at a National Law Journal 500 law firm ten months after graduation, while another 6 joined NLJ 500 firms after their judicial clerkships. These 24 graduates account for 16% of all employed 2017 graduates, compared to 17% of class of 2016 graduates in NLJ 500 firms and 13% of class of 2015 graduates in NLJ 500 firms.
- Salaries for these firms range from $110-180K, with the bulk in the $130s.
- 18% (28/153) of employed graduates are working in government:
- 100% of these graduates are working in full-time positions for which bar passage was required, or a JD degree was an advantage.
- Eleven of these graduates are working for the U.S. federal government, including 5 who are working for either the Army or Air Force JAG Corps.
- 18% (28/153) of employed graduates are working in judicial clerkships:
- Two are in federal court clerkships, 14 are in state appellate court clerkships, and 12 are in state trial court clerkships.
- 15% (23/153) of employed graduates are working in business:
- Twenty of these graduates are in full-time jobs that last at least one year for which bar passage was required, or a JD degree was an advantage.
- These businesses include Cisco Systems, DISH Network, Equinix, KeyBank, LifeTime Fitness, and Otter Products.
- 9% (13/153) of employed graduates are working in public interest:
- Six of these graduates are working for Public Defender Offices.
- 3% (5/153) of employed graduates are working in Law School funded fellowships:
- Four are working in government and one is working for a public interest organization.
- 2% (3/153) of employed graduates are working in education:
- These graduates are working in universities in Colorado, Utah, and Virginia.
- 99% (152/153) of employed graduates reported a salary:
- These salaries represent 144 long-term jobs and 8 short-term jobs.
- The median salary was $57,740 and the mean was $72,053.
- The private practice (law firm) median salary was $98,500, the private sector median salary was $90,000, and the public sector median salary was $55,000.
- Twenty-five percent of the graduates reporting salaries earn $90,000 or more per year.
- Twenty-five percent of the graduates reporting salaries earn $50,000 or less per year.
To maintain consistency with the 2017 NALP employment report, we report only salaries from full-time, long-term positions held by members of the class of 2017 as of March 15, 2018. We received salaries from 99% of graduates employed in full-time, long-term positions (142/143).
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 55 qualified applicants with $5,500 awards during the 2017-18 academic year.
|Sector||# Reporting||Full/ Part Time||Long/ Short Term||# FT/LT Employed Reporting Salary||% FT/LT Employed Reporting Salary||Median||Mean||25th Percentile||75th Percentile|
|Category||# Reporting||Full/ Part Time||Long/ Short Term||# FT/LT Employed Reporting Salary||% FT/LT Employed Reporting Salary||Median||Mean||25th Percentile||75th Percentile|
|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.
Employment Summary by Location
|Region||# Student Reported||% of Reported|
|New England (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT)||0||-|
|Mid-Atlantic (NJ, NY, PA)||6||3.9%|
|North East Central (IL, IN, MI, OH, WI)||1||0.7%|
|North West Central (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD)||2||1.3%|
|South Atlantic (DE, DC, FL, GA, MD, NC, SC, VA, WV)||7||4.5%|
|South East Central (AL, KY, MS, TN)||0||-|
|South West Central (AR, LA, OK, TX)||2||1.3%|
|Mountain (AZ, CO, ID, MT, NM, NV, UT, WY)||126||82.4%|
|Pacific (AK, CA, HI, OR, WA)||8||5.2%|
Of the 126 graduates reporting employment in the Mountain region, 119 were employed in Colorado which represents 77.8% of employed graduates.
Timing of Post-Graduate Jobs
The timing of Colorado Law students accepting post-graduate employment has followed a distinct pattern over the last four years. By spring break, one-third or more of students had reported a post-graduate position. By graduation, at least one 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 four years (seven months after graduation), 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. Below are the percentages of students known to be employed on each of the following dates.
|April 1, 2017||45%|
|January 1, 2018||89%|
Post-Graduate Employers of the Colorado Law Class of 2017
(Duplicate employers have been removed. Out of state employers have been marked.)
- 11th Judicial District Attorney’s Office
- 12th Judicial District Attorney's Office
- 20th Judicial District Attorney's Office
- 7th Judicial District Attorney's Office
- Adobe Systems Incorporated (UT)
- Bendinelli Law Firm
- Berg Hill Greenleaf Ruscitti
- Block 45 Legal
- Boulder County Attorney's Office
- Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
- Bryan Cave
- Chief Justice Rice, Colorado Supreme Court
- Cisco Systems, Inc. (CA)
- City of Fort Collins
- Clark County District Attorney's Office (NV)
- Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment
- Colorado Division of Securities, Department of Regulatory Agencies
- Colorado Legal Services
- Colorado State Public Defender
- Cooley LLP
- Davis Graham and Stubbs
- Denver City Attorney's Office, City Council
- Denver City Attorney's Office, Civil Litigation, Claims
- Denver City Attorney's Office, Civil Litigation, Employment
- Denver City Attorney's Office, Prosecution and Code Enforcement
- Denver Probate Court
- Derek T. Smith Veterans Benefits Lawyer (CA)
- DISH Network
- Dolce Law
- Dorsey & Whitney
- Dymond Reagor
- Environmental Defense Fund
- Equinix (CA)
- Erise IP
- Federal Communications Commission (DC)
- Fidelity National Title Insurance (NE)
- Flatirons Bank
- Fransua Law LLC (AZ)
- Fredericks Peebles and Morgan LLP
- Fremont County Department of Human Services
- Friday Health Plans, Inc.
- Gard Law Firm, LLC
- Gart Companies
- George Mason University (VA)
- Graville Law Firm (MO)
- Hershey Decker Drake, PLLC
- Holland & Hart, LLP
- Holland & Knight LLP
- Husch Blackwell
- Hutchinson Black & Cook
- Internal Revenue Service (TX)
- Irving Cohen, Esq. (NY)
- Jackson Lewis P.C.
- Jacqueline Lim Law, LLC
- JLT Specialty Insurance Services
- Judge Bakke, 20th Judicial District Court
- Judge Berger, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Bernard, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Brinegar, 8th Judicial District Court
- Judge Brown, 17th Judicial District Court
- Judge Dailey, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Eid, 10th Circuit Court of Appeals
- Judge Fox, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Furman, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Graham, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Jones, 2nd Judicial District
- Judge Jones, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Lammons, 8th Judicial District Court
- Judge Lichtenstein, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Macdonald, 20th Judicial District Court
- Judge Meinster, 1st Judicial District Court
- Judge Navarro, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judge Odell, 8th Judicial District Court
- Judge Pratt, 18th Judicial District Court
- Judge Russell, 1st Judicial District Court
- Judge Tow, Colorado Court of Appeals
- Judges Crespin and Ramirez, 17th Judicial District Court
- Justice Boatright, Colorado Supreme Court
- Justice Hood, Colorado Supreme Court
- Kingsberry CPAs
- Kutak Rock
- Kutner Brinen
- Lau & Choi, P.C.
- Legal Aid Society (NY)
- LifeTime Fitness (Athlinks)
- Marsh Fischmann & Breyfogle
- Messner Reeves
- Mulligan Law Office (WY)
- National Renewable Energy Laboratory
- Native American Disability Law Center (NM)
- New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJ)
- Norton Rose Fulbright
- Office of Legislative Legal Services
- Otten Johnson Robinson Neff + Ragonetti
- Otter Products, LLC
- Patrick Miller Noto
- Perkins Coie
- PwC (CA)
- Sam P. Israel, P.C. (NY)
- Santa Fe Dreamers Project (NM)
- Schafer Thomas Maez PC
- Senator Michael Bennet
- Setter Roche
- Shearman & Sterling (England)
- Sherman & Howard
- Shiloh House
- Snell & Wilmer
- Special Counsel (Epiq) (OR)
- Stern & Curray, LLC
- Stimson Glover Stancil Leedy
- Straight Up Capital (PA)
- The Babcock Law Firm
- The Hill Companies
- The Hopkins Law Firm
- The Law Office of Bartley A. Costello, Jr.
- The Law Office of Jacob E. Martinez Law
- Troxel Fitch LLC
- U.S. Air Force JAG Corps (TX and VA)
- U.S. Army JAG Corps (HI and VA)
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces (DC)
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (IL)
- University of Colorado, Getches Wilkinson Center
- University of Utah, Technology & Venture Commercialization (UT)
- Washington Court of Appeals, Division 2 (WA)
- Webroot Inc.