SMU Dedman School of Law graduates build careers in every sector of the legal profession—private practice, business, government, judiciary, public service and academia—as well as in non-legal professions where a law degree is substantially valued. The Office of Career Services strives to collect, analyze and report complete and accurate employment and salary information of our graduates. We are proud to present the following employment information for the Classes of 2012 and 2011 as a testament to our steadfast commitment to not only turning out talented young attorneys, but also to successfully placing that talent within the market. For additional information regarding employment and salary data of SMU Dedman Law graduates in various employment sectors for the Classes of 2012 and 2011 see here.
EMPLOYMENT STATUS REPORT
The Office of Career Services provides students and recent graduates with one-on-one guidance from attorney-counselors, whose professional experience ranges from working with prominent international and regional law firms to serving a corporation as general counsel. These dedicated attorney-counselors bring numerous law firm, corporate, government and public interest employers to recruit our law students throughout the year, and they facilitate employment in even the most challenging economic times by operating innovative programs such as Partner to Practice , a summer clerkship initiative for second year law students, and Test Drive, an incentive hiring program for third year students and recent graduates.
Employment by Type
The majority of 2012 graduates elected to join a law firm. The National Law Journal recognized SMU Dedman School of Law as #27 among law schools for the percentage of graduates sent to the National Law Journal’s Top 250 Law Firms of 2012.
The business and industry sector is the second most desired job destination of our graduates. SMU Dedman School of Law has a long list of graduates who use their J.D. to advance an existing career or to advance in another industry. SMU Dedman School of Law alumni serve as chief legal officers for a number of entities, including AT&T, Chevron Europe, Eurasia, & Middle East, Dallas Mavericks, Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Neiman Marcus, Baylor Health Care System, and many more. Moreover, SMU Dedman School of Law ranks #1 among law schools represented in Fortune 50 CEOs. Of the five lawyers on the list, our alumni include David B. Dillon, Chairman of the Board and CEO of The Kroger Company and Edward B. Rust, Jr., Chairman of the Board and CEO of State Farm Insurance Companies. The only graduate school with more CEOs in the top 50 is Harvard Business School. SMU Dedman School of Law ranks #2 on the Forbes list, represented by three billionaire graduates.
SMU graduates are also leading the public sector, where members of our accomplished alumni serve as the Governor of Florida, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas, the Chief Justice of the highest court in Thailand and the Philippines and, until recently, the Foreign Minister of India.
Employment by Geographical Location
The Texas economy has been very resilient to the recent recession. Numerous studies show positive economic trends and indicate a steady rise from the recession, especially in the private sector. Dallas, a leader in the Texas economy, is home to the third largest concentration of Fortune 500 Companies and over 40 of the country’s largest law firms, a fact which affords our law students the ability to earn significant legal experience during law school through clerkships, internships and academic externships.
SMU Dedman School of Law is the #1 law school among the “Best Lawyers in Dallas,” according to D Magazine (May 2011), and the law school has held this impressive title since the list was first published in 2003. While the majority of graduates take advantage of this distinguished reputation and extensive alumni network in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, SMU Dedman School of Law helps students gain opportunities for employment all over the country and world. With alumni in over 80 countries, graduates of SMU Dedman School of Law are open to infinite possibilities.