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Prior to entering law school, you must earn a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. You may major in a subject of your choice. If you are interested in pre-law at UNM, please contact the pre-law advisor, and she can help you decide what major works best for you.
Ellen Grigsby, Pre-Law Advisor
Social Sciences Bldg Rm 2076
If you have questions about the accreditation of your college or university, please contact the UNM Admissions Office at (505) 277-2446.
DiscoverLaw.org Prelaw Undergraduate Scholars (PLUS) Program is targeted to racial and ethnic students in the first two years of college who wish to develop the skills required to succeed in law school. Each program establishes their own admission criteria and selects participants.
List of Participating PLUS Schools (as of 4/2010): University of New Mexico School of Law; University of Baltimore School of Law; Ohio Northern University Claude W. Pettit College of Law; Georgia State University College of Law; University of Missouri Kansas City School of Law
The American Indian Law Center offers a two-month summer program for Native American students called the Pre-Law Summer Institute (PLSI).
The Council on Legal Education Opportunity (CLEO) offers a six-week summer program.
The University of New Mexico School of Law does not employ presumptive cutoffs. All applications are reviewed and considered. See the Class Statistics in the Admissions webpage for a detailed list of statistical and demographic information.
The Admissions Committee considers a variety of factors when evaluating applications, including, but not limited to, the personal statement, letters of recommendation, work and life experience, and extracurricular activities, in addition to UGPA and LSAT score.
Applicants who were disappointed with their first LSAT score may choose to re-take the test. If an applicant has taken the LSAT multiple times, the applicant’s LSAC's Credential Assembly Service report will show all of the scores, as well as computing an average score for the applicant. The Admissions Committee will have the opportunity to see all scores for that applicant, and the high score will be used for reporting purposes.
Detailed information about the law school application process, including the application, may be found on the Application Process section.
The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) offers fee waivers for the LSAT and CAS. Further information, including a fee waiver application form, may be found on the LSAC website. Individuals who have been granted a LSAC fee waiver will have their UNM School of Law application fee automatically waived.
Interested applicants who have not been granted an LSAC fee waiver must submit a UNM fee waiver form.
Applicants who wish to apply for federal loans should complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by the priority deadline of March 1st, even if they have not yet received an admission decision. Limited need-based grant funding is available, as well. Interested students should complete the Need Access application no later than May 1st. No awards will be made until an individual has been admitted. Further information about the financial aid application process may be found on the Financial Aid section.
All first-year applicants will be considered for merit scholarships based on their law school application file and no additional application or paperwork is needed. Merit scholarships are not need-based, however, we do ask merit scholarship recipients to have a completed FAFSA on file.
Upon request from eligible Teach for America participants, University of New Mexico School of Law will offer a two-year deferral to admitted students who want to participate in the corps in the year in which their study was to commence. We will also grant an application fee waiver to any current Teach for America corps member who meets the law school’s eligibility requirements. Teach for America corps members and alumni will be considered for scholarships and tuition assistance.
The UNM School of Law does not have a traditional part-time program. However, the school does have a nontraditional Flexible Time Program, which is designed for students seeking a lightened class load. The Flexible Time Program is only available for a limited number of students, and students who want to be considered for the Flexible Time Program must indicate their interest when applying to the UNM School of Law.
First-year law students may work, subject to the following restrictions:
Law students may petition for residency after residing in New Mexico for a period of twelve consecutive months immediately prior to the term for which residency is being sought and complying with specified overt acts that demonstrate intent to become a resident. The rules and regulations for establishing residency for tuition purposes are defined by state statutes.
The residency decision is based on the information contained in the application for admission. Details about residency for tuition purposes may be found on the UNM Office of the Registrar.
UNM School of Law offers certificates of specialization in Indian Law and Natural Resources Law. The Indian Law certificate program and the Natural Resources Law certificate program have detailed information.
UNM School of Law has long been a leader in the area of clinical training, and its clinical program is considered one of the best in the country. All students are required to complete six credit hours of clinic prior to graduation. Clinics currently available include the Business and Tax Clinic, the Community Lawyering Clinics, the Law Practice Clinic, and the Southwest Indian Law Clinic. Please see The Clinical Law Program webpage for further information.
Students may also participate in law office, judicial, or alternative dispute resolution (ADR) externships
We have three established dual-degree programs: JD/MPA in Public Administration, JD/MA in Latin American Studies, and JD/MBA. It is also possible to combine your JD with other graduate programs at UNM. You must be admitted to the law school and the graduate school separately. You will need to contact the graduate program for information about their requirements. The graduate school will accept six credit hours of law courses toward the graduate degree, and the law school will accept six credit hours of graduate courses toward the JD. Please see the Dual Degree webpage for further information.
UNM School of Law does not offer the LLM. We only offer the degree of Juris Doctor (JD).
Our graduates enter all segments of the legal market, including private practice at large and small law firms; government agencies, including criminal prosecutor and public defender offices; prestigious federal and state judicial clerkships; public interest agencies; and business and industry. The majority choose to stay in the region, although others elect to work in large cities and small towns around the country and the world. Please see the Career Services webpage for detailed information on employment and professional development assistance for UNM law students.
All law students are required to own portable (notebook or laptop) computers. For further information, including specifications, see the Required Laptop Program.