Law School Financing

Learn about the federal government's investment in legal education

Federal Investment in Legal Education: Class of 2015

For a full analysis of federal investment in legal education, including annual investments and trends, see this post about 2012 graduates. The data on this page reflect the investment in all 2015 graduates.

Known Federal Investment by School Type

TypeSchools Accounted ForAvg. Debt/Student(% of all grads borrowing)Total Federal Investment
Private (Non-Profit) 103/115 (89.6%) $130,699 (77.8%) $2,553,472,451
Public School 80/83 (96.4%) $96,370 (76.9%) $1,099,201,072
Private (For Profit) 3/6 (50%) $154,221 (82.7%) $93,612,428
All Types 186/204 (91.2%) $118,741 (77.6%) $3,746,285,951

Known Federal Government Investment by School

To calculate the amount loaned for each school (available in the table below), we took the number of graduates and multiplied it times the percentage of those graduates borrowing loans processed by the school. We rounded that number to the nearest whole graduate and multiplied it times the average debt for that school. $3.75 billion is the aggregate debt of students graduating from the 186 included schools. The known federal government investment figures do not include students who never graduated and those enrolled in non-J.D. programs.

Data Sources

Data about 1L enrollment and total graduates come from the ABA Section of Legal Education. Data about average debt and the percent borrowing come from U.S. News & World Report, which surveyed individual law schools.

Schools with insufficient data to be included on the below table: Appalachian School of Law (Private, 91 grads), Arizona Summit Law School (For Profit, 131 grads), Charlotte School of Law (For Profit, 97 grads), Concordia University School of Law (Private, 12 grads), Faulkner University (Private, 101 grads), Florida A&M University (Public, 152 grads), Inter American University (Private, 234 grads), John Marshall Law School - Atlanta (For Profit, 132 grads), New England School of Law (Private, 308 grads), Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico (Private, 217 grads), Southwestern Law School (Private, 298 grads), St. Thomas University - Florida (Private, 221 grads), Texas Southern University (Public, 163 grads), Thomas M Cooley Law School (Private, 999 grads), Touro College (Private, 221 grads), University of La Verne (Private, 116 grads), University of Puerto Rico (Public, 244 grads), Western New England University School of Law (Private, 153 grads).

School Type Grads Avg. Grad Loan Disb. % Borrowing Federal Gov't
Investment
Albany Law School Private 236 $125,157 88% $26,032,656
American University Private 467 $160,274 80% $59,942,476
Arizona State University Public 201 $106,426 55% $11,813,286
Ave Maria School of Law Private 88 $134,071 77% $9,116,828
Barry University Private 209 $138,410 88% $25,467,440
Baylor University Private 157 $135,817 65% $13,853,334
Belmont University Private 119 $56,225 78% $5,228,925
Boston College Private 285 $112,439 72% $23,049,995
Boston University Private 273 $102,329 73% $20,363,471
Brigham Young University Private 148 $62,423 68% $6,304,723
Brooklyn Law School Private 455 $108,942 75% $37,149,222
California Western School of Law Private 285 $162,260 89% $41,214,040
Campbell University Private 133 $115,128 83% $12,664,080
Capital University Private 175 $116,283 84% $17,093,601
Cardozo-Yeshiva University Private 380 $119,294 70% $31,732,204
Case Western Reserve University Private 201 $105,854 75% $15,983,954
Catholic University of America Private 261 $139,803 75% $27,401,388
Chapman University Private 177 $103,956 81% $14,865,708
Charleston School of Law For Profit 193 $146,230 65% $18,278,750
Chicago-Kent College of Law Private 332 $115,040 80% $30,600,640
Cleveland-Marshall College of Law Public 185 $93,865 81% $14,079,750
Columbia University Private 456 $168,627 59% $45,360,663
Cornell University Private 201 $155,025 77% $24,028,875
Creighton University Private 153 $117,980 91% $16,399,220
CUNY Public 111 $77,751 86% $7,386,345
DePaul University Private 319 $131,148 84% $35,147,664
Drake University Private 155 $107,649 83% $13,886,721
Drexel University Private 131 $100,362 81% $10,638,372
Duke University Private 207 $131,073 68% $18,481,293
Duquesne University Private 206 $104,623 90% $19,355,255
Elon Law School Private 99 $128,407 86% $10,914,595
Emory University Private 225 $121,278 69% $18,798,090
Florida Coastal School of Law For Profit 451 $160,942 94% $68,239,408
Florida International University Public 173 $95,331 85% $14,013,657
Florida State University Public 279 $82,102 84% $19,211,868
Fordham University Private 428 $149,058 60% $38,307,906
George Mason University Public 170 $121,910 76% $15,726,390
George Washington University Private 518 $136,662 70% $49,608,306
Georgetown University Private 644 $160,606 73% $75,484,820
Georgia State University Public 186 $66,637 78% $9,662,365
Golden Gate University Private 191 $143,740 88% $24,148,320
Gonzaga University Private 160 $125,347 79% $15,793,722
Hamline University Private 205 $107,359 90% $19,861,415
Harvard University Private 583 $149,754 72% $62,896,680
Hofstra University Private 297 $125,300 77% $28,693,700
Howard University Private 157 $0 90%
Indiana University - Bloomington Public 195 $91,020 77% $13,653,000
Indiana University - Indianapolis Public 252 $106,114 83% $22,177,826
John Marshall Law School - Chicago Private 401 $162,264 82% $53,384,856
Lewis and Clark College Private 233 $140,025 81% $26,464,725
Liberty University Private 90 $68,667 84% $5,218,692
Lincoln Memorial University Private 45 $95,495 60% $2,578,365
Louisiana State University Public 176 $90,609 74% $11,779,170
Loyola Marymount University Private 403 $148,035 80% $47,667,270
Loyola University Chicago Private 251 $133,052 85% $28,340,076
Loyola University New Orleans Private 231 $124,143 78% $22,345,740
Marquette University Private 230 $138,549 86% $27,432,702
Mercer University Private 130 $138,575 88% $15,797,550
Michigan State University Private 283 $93,245 77% $20,327,410
Mississippi College Private 165 $114,639 70% $13,298,124
New York Law School Private 515 $161,910 80% $66,706,920
New York University Private 466 $166,022 69% $53,459,084
North Carolina Central University Public 170 $83,916 96% $13,678,308
Northeastern University Private 182 $127,406 72% $16,690,186
Northern Illinois University Public 97 $77,975 85% $6,393,950
Northern Kentucky University Public 179 $84,714 39% $5,929,980
Northwestern University Private 287 $155,796 78% $34,898,304
Nova Southeastern University Private 302 $123,798 95% $35,530,026
Ohio Northern University Private 97 $102,414 84% $8,295,534
Ohio State University Public 231 $96,253 83% $18,480,576
Oklahoma City University Private 176 $121,607 71% $15,200,875
Pace University Private 222 $124,823 86% $23,841,193
Pennsylvania State University - Dickinson Public 57 $116,717 74% $4,902,114
Pennsylvania State University - University Park Public 98 $129,772 81% $10,251,988
Pepperdine University Private 229 $148,959 74% $25,174,071
Quinnipiac University Private 133 $97,335 86% $11,096,190
Regent University Private 118 $93,142 92% $10,152,478
Roger Williams University Private 158 $123,332 84% $16,403,156
Rutgers University Public 399 $85,054 66% $22,369,202
Samford University Private 148 $124,106 96% $17,623,052
Santa Clara University Private 296 $144,130 65% $27,672,960
Seattle University Private 315 $136,889 82% $35,317,362
Seton Hall University Private 293 $133,000 69% $26,866,000
South Texas College of Law Houston Private 402 $121,767 75% $36,773,634
Southern Illinois University Public 111 $90,727 92% $9,254,154
Southern Methodist University Private 272 $124,723 81% $27,439,060
Southern University Law Center Public 143 $86,708 94% $11,618,872
St. John's University Private 276 $115,666 78% $24,868,190
St. Louis University Private 272 $113,070 82% $25,214,610
St. Mary's University Private 249 $122,560 89% $27,208,320
Stanford University Private 192 $132,970 79% $20,211,440
Stetson University Private 322 $130,079 82% $34,340,856
Suffolk University Private 502 $138,724 81% $56,460,668
SUNY Buffalo Public 245 $86,970 75% $16,002,480
Syracuse University Private 193 $139,753 88% $23,758,010
Temple University Public 319 $86,999 83% $23,054,735
Texas A&M Public 223 $104,200 88% $20,423,200
Texas Tech University Public 200 $74,673 75% $11,200,950
Thomas Jefferson School of Law Private 236 $172,726 90% $36,617,912
Tulane University Private 241 $153,606 65% $24,116,142
University of Akron Public 116 $78,575 84% $7,621,775
University of Alabama Public 164 $74,921 69% $8,466,073
University of Arizona Public 158 $100,902 69% $10,998,318
University of Arkansas - Fayetteville Public 116 $64,901 74% $5,581,486
University of Arkansas - Little Rock Public 150 $68,960 77% $7,999,360
University of Baltimore Public 298 $112,008 82% $27,329,952
University of California - Berkeley Public 310 $144,981 72% $32,330,763
University of California - Davis Public 195 $113,765 72% $15,927,100
University of California - Hastings Public 411 $135,886 90% $50,277,820
University of California - Irvine Public 56 $125,473 71% $5,018,920
University of California - Los Angeles Public 344 $118,874 73% $29,837,374
University of Chicago Private 203 $129,636 68% $17,889,768
University of Cincinnati Public 120 $82,988 78% $7,800,872
University of Colorado Public 176 $107,080 71% $13,385,000
University of Connecticut Public 179 $69,195 79% $9,756,495
University of Dayton Private 171 $115,740 89% $17,592,480
University of Denver Private 287 $132,158 77% $29,206,918
University of Detroit Mercy Private 209 $137,047 62% $17,816,110
University of Florida Public 409 $84,580 73% $25,289,420
University of Georgia Public 227 $86,515 82% $16,091,790
University of Hawaii Public 101 $54,988 75% $4,179,088
University of Houston Public 281 $87,602 69% $16,994,788
University of Idaho Public 102 $96,342 78% $7,707,360
University of Illinois Public 190 $118,731 71% $16,028,685
University of Iowa Public 183 $86,373 77% $12,178,593
University of Kansas Public 168 $80,884 81% $11,000,224
University of Kentucky Public 135 $77,793 72% $7,545,921
University of Louisville Public 142 $86,880 79% $9,730,560
University of Maine Public 90 $99,617 73% $6,574,722
University of Maryland Public 297 $114,493 68% $23,127,586
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Public 51 $102,603 88% $4,617,135
University of Memphis Public 129 $77,752 74% $7,386,440
University of Miami Private 385 $155,796 72% $43,155,492
University of Michigan Public 379 $142,572 76% $41,060,736
University of Minnesota Public 261 $92,179 72% $17,329,652
University of Mississippi Public 151 $71,330 78% $8,416,940
University of Missouri - Columbia Public 141 $81,149 83% $9,494,433
University of Missouri - Kansas City Public 154 $96,639 83% $12,369,792
University of Montana Public 85 $79,304 80% $5,392,672
University of Nebraska Public 130 $58,744 70% $5,345,704
University of Nevada - Las Vegas Public 128 $81,579 81% $8,484,216
University of New Hampshire Private 147 $108,896 80% $12,849,728
University of New Mexico Public 103 $69,366 87% $6,242,940
University of North Carolina Public 247 $102,828 72% $18,303,384
University of North Dakota Public 81 $69,058 77% $4,281,596
University of Notre Dame Private 190 $122,822 72% $16,826,614
University of Oklahoma Public 163 $82,818 78% $10,517,886
University of Oregon Public 174 $106,540 84% $15,554,840
University of Pennsylvania Private 274 $144,153 74% $29,263,059
University of Pittsburgh Public 253 $104,484 79% $20,896,800
University of Richmond Private 166 $110,665 63% $11,619,825
University of San Diego Private 318 $135,433 81% $34,941,714
University of San Francisco Private 222 $162,434 79% $28,425,950
University of South Carolina Public 222 $85,006 78% $14,706,038
University of South Dakota Public 55 $57,170 83% $2,629,820
University of Southern California Private 207 $134,673 70% $19,527,585
University of St. Thomas - Minneapolis Private 134 $101,950 73% $9,991,100
University of Tennessee Public 146 $66,939 78% $7,631,046
University of Texas Public 382 $102,101 68% $26,546,260
University of The District of Columbia Public 78 $108,095 71% $5,945,225
University of the Pacific Private 303 $149,470 83% $37,516,970
University of Toledo Public 115 $94,295 88% $9,523,795
University of Tulsa Private 120 $82,954 100% $9,954,480
University of Utah Public 134 $79,124 82% $8,703,640
University of Virginia Public 377 $146,907 71% $39,371,076
University of Washington Public 182 $111,003 73% $14,763,399
University of Wisconsin Public 254 $84,650 76% $16,337,450
University of Wyoming Public 74 $77,421 88% $5,032,365
Valparaiso University Private 181 $131,024 94% $22,274,080
Vanderbilt University Private 198 $114,447 70% $15,908,133
Vermont Law School Private 174 $156,710 87% $23,663,210
Villanova University Private 252 $110,792 72% $20,053,352
Wake Forest University Private 158 $97,550 88% $13,559,450
Washburn University Public 142 $86,621 84% $10,307,899
Washington and Lee University Private 129 $110,067 76% $10,786,566
Washington University in St Louis Private 317 $109,232 61% $21,081,776
Wayne State University Public 203 $82,397 77% $12,853,932
West Virginia University Public 125 $85,063 88% $9,356,930
Western State University For Profit 90 $122,315 64% $7,094,270
Whittier Law School Private 123 $148,316 84% $15,276,548
Widener University - Delaware Private 236 $136,992 88% $28,494,336
Widener University - Pennsylvania Private 113 $148,496 91% $15,295,088
Willamette University Private 129 $133,318 80% $13,731,754
William and Mary Public 204 $110,140 80% $17,952,820
William Mitchell College of Law Private 282 $108,678 88% $26,952,144
Yale University Private 205 $122,796 76% $19,156,176