University of South Dakota School of Law

By | January 5, 2023

The University of South Dakota School of Law was founded in 1901 by the Dakota Territorial Legislature to provide legal education for the people of South Dakota. It began as a two-year program but was changed to a three-year program in 1908. In 1911, the school moved from its original location in Deadwood to Vermillion, becoming the only law school in the state at that time. The school has grown significantly since then, adding new courses and degree programs to its curriculum. In 1971, it became an accredited member of the Association of American Law Schools and began offering a Juris Doctor (JD) degree program. Since then, it has continued to expand its academic offerings and student services, including clinical education opportunities, moot court competitions and international exchange programs. Today, USD Law is home to more than 500 students pursuing both JD and Master’s degrees in law. The school also offers a number of dual degree programs with other graduate schools at USD and with other universities across the country. Students benefit from access to USD’s state-of-the-art library and computer facilities as well as career counseling services provided by the Career Services Office. The faculty is committed to teaching excellence and strives to provide students with an excellent legal education that prepares them for successful careers in law or related fields. Check topschoolsintheusa for New York law schools.

University of South Dakota School of Law

University of South Dakota School of Law is located in the state of South Dakota. As one of the leading law programs, University of South Dakota School of Law has a high average LSAT score of 149-155 when recruiting new students. As a return, the median starting salary for law graduates reaches $49,000 per year. See the following table for detailed admissions information and career profiles of University of South Dakota School of Law.

University of South Dakota is abbreviated for USD:

Admissions: University of South Dakota

The University of South Dakota School of Law has a total enrollment of about 200 students. The student-to-faculty ratio is 11:1, which allows for plenty of one-on-one attention from professors and staff. The school’s acceptance rate is 52%, meaning that out of all applicants, only about half are accepted into the program. The median GPA for incoming students is 3.44 and the median LSAT score is 153. This indicates that the school looks for well-rounded applicants who have demonstrated academic success in their prior studies. In addition to academics, the school also considers an applicant’s personal statement, letters of recommendation and extracurricular activities in order to make their admissions decisions. The University of South Dakota School of Law also offers a variety of financial aid options including scholarships, grants and loans to help cover tuition costs.

Fall 2019 Admissions and Enrollment Statistics
Total number of full- and part-time applicants 382
Total number of full- and part-time acceptances 217
Overall acceptance rate 56.8%
Total number of full- and part-time first-year students enrolled 78
Number of full-time program applicants 382
Number of full-time program acceptances 217
Full-time acceptance rate 56.8%
Number of first-year full-time students enrolled 78
Number of part-time program applicants 0
Number of part-time program acceptances 0
Part-time acceptance rate N/A
Number of first-year part-time students enrolled 1
Fall 2019 GPA and LSAT Scores
25th-75th percentile GPA scores for all students 3.13-3.65
25th-75th percentile LSAT scores for all students 149-155
25th-75th percentile undergraduate GPA for full-time students 3.13-3.65
25th-75th percentile LSAT scores for full-time students 149-155
25th-75th percentile undergraduate GPA for part-time students N/A
25th-75th percentile LSAT scores for part-time students N/A

Careers: University of South Dakota

Bar Statistics (Winter and Summer 2018 administrations)
State where the greatest number of first-time test takers took the bar SD
School’s bar passage rate for first-time test takers 94.9%
Statewide bar passage rate for first-time test takers 95.2%
Class of 2018 Graduates
Total graduates 86
Graduates employed at graduation 54.1%
Graduates known to be employed nine months after graduation 94.3%
Starting Salaries of 2018 Graduates Employed Full-time
25th percentile private sector starting salary $42,500
Median private sector starting salary $49,000
75th percentile private sector starting salary $55,000
Percent in the private sector who reported salary information 46%
Median public service starting salary $42,422
Areas of Legal Practice (Class of 2018)
Percent employed in academia 4.0%
Percent employed in business and industry 14.0%
Percent employed in government 22.0%
Percent employed in all judicial clerkships 18.0%
Percent employed in law firms 32.0%
Percent employed in public interest 8.0%
Percent employed in an unknown field 2.0%
Percent employed in a judicial clerkship by an Article III federal judge 7.0%
2018 Graduates Employment Location
Graduates employed in-state 64%
Graduates employed in foreign countries N/A
Number of states where graduates are employed 13
New England (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT) 1.0%
Middle Atlantic (NY, NJ, PA) N/A
East North Central (IL, IN, MI, OH, WI) N/A
West North Central (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD) 84.4%
South Atlantic (DE, DC, FL, GA, MD, NC, SC, VA, WV) 2.6%
East South Central (AL, KY, MS, TN) N/A
West South Central (AR, LA, OK, TX) 1.0%
Pacific (AK, CA, HI, OR, WA) N/A
Mountain (AZ, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, UT, WY) 10.0%
Employment location unknown 1.0%
Career Services
(Data appear as originally submitted by this school)
Career services operations CSO provides judicial clerkship and employer OCI; career seminars, meet-the-employer event & resume review by practicing attorneys; employer & public interest panels; alumni contacts; job posting reciprocity with other schools; online and print resources; online Senior Spotlight with graduates’ pictures and resumes; Univ. career services for non-legal positions.
Job Type
Bar admission required or anticipated (e.g., attorney and corporate counsel positions, law clerks, judicial clerks) 77.0%
J.D. preferred, law degree enhances position (e.g., corporate contracts administrator, alternative dispute resolution specialist, government regulatory analyst, FBI special agent) 13.0%
Professional/other (jobs that require professional skills or training but for which a J.D. is neither preferred nor particularly applicable; e.g., accountant, teacher, business manager, nurse) 8.0%
Nonprofessional/other (job that does not require any professional skills or training or is taken on a temporary basis and not viewed as part of a career path) N/A