Small class sizes, faculty always open to student needsLevel
1L classes taught in Socratic method, based on my personal experiences, the quality of classes at Willamette is high. Most professors encourage discussion of policy, theory, and applicability of law. Smallest class I have been in to date: 11 students, largest: 75 students, average around 25 students. School has strong grading curve and mean, including drop policy for bottom students. The academic policies surrounding grades intensifies competitive atmosphere, particularly surrounding exam time. Have an emerging ADR program, sustainability, law and government, international law (plus LLM), business law certificate programs and clinics. Study abroad programs available through Willamette to Ecuador, Germany (exchange program), and China. Average five class per semester academic load, 20-30 pages per class per session.
Symeon Symeonedis, known for Conflict of Law work, retiring as Dean this year and will continue teaching at Willamette. Oregon Supreme Court Justice Chief Justice Paul DeMuniz, Justice Hans Linde.Quality of Life
Cost of living in Salem is low. Rent averages around 400-500 a month, inexpensive grocery stores and restaurants. No graduate housing, good campus food service. Law library and undergraduate library both provide excellent study spaces. Plenty of coffee shops near campus and on campus. Computer lab and print rooms with computers in library. Free standing law school, printing costs in fees feels like free and unlimited printing. Low crime, mainly property theft in the form of bikes. Beautiful campus with open green spaces.Admissions
LSAC general form populated to Willamette specific system, merit based scholarships for select incoming students, recalculated after each academic year dependent on class rankings, do not remember the specifics to the application questions, LSAT required, and typical essays and adendums. Select class based on LSAT and GPA, as well as whole-applicant review.Level
It very much varies by professor. Overall, the law school tries to maintain an open door policy with professors to be accessible to answer questions.Admissions
In my opinion, the most important admission factor is the LSAT score. I applied with a low LSAT score and was not accepted. Once I raised my LSAT score, I was accepted and given a seizable scholarship. My undergraduate GPA was very good.Level
The first half of each semester focuses on theory, then you dive into the law and its exceptions. It's a hefty workload, but it's manageable--just don't get behind and come prepared to class. LRW will be a thorn in your side the entire first year because the workload is tremendous but it's only a pass/no pass. There are lots of opportunities to get involved with programs like moot court, law review, etc, but, again, these programs are highly selective and usually only the top third of each class will get the opportunity to participate.
Grading is based on a forced curve. So you're not graded on an individual basis, you're graded in comparison to each of your class mates, which fosters a competitive and even hostile environment because people tend to act cutthroat and will even try to mislead you if you ask a question. For those reasons, it's best to ask questions in class or discuss with the professor in private than ask a classmate.Quality of Life
Campus is small, but you're lucky if you have time to leave the library. The school is incredibly expensive, Willamette seems to charge an exorbitant rate for everything from tuition to coffee. Salem itself is a dump. It's a poor crime ridden city without any nightlife or recreation. But, again, you won't have time for that your first year, so this isn't an issue until your second and third year.Admissions
The application process is the standard LSAC procedure (i.e., LSAT score, transcripts, work history, letters of recommendation, etc).Level