If you seek a law school in a place with great outdoor activities, a robust arts scene, and incredible culinary experiences, Minnesota is worth a look. All three of the state's law schools are located in the Twin Cities, a metropolitan area made up of Minneapolis, St. Paul, and surrounding suburbs. The Twin Cities offers a unique mix of city living and small-town charm, and its law schools offer solid legal education options at a fairly approachable price point.
This article can help you decide if attending law school in the Land of 10,000 Lakes is right for you.
Mitchell Hamline School of Law
Hamline University School of Law and William Mitchell College of Law made headlines in 2016 when they merged into one school, Mitchell Hamline School of Law. The school's prominent clinic programs and extensive network of alums have led it to be named a law school on the rise.
U.S. News ranks Mitchell Hamline among the top law schools for dispute resolution, health care law, and intellectual property law. It was also the first ABA-accredited law school in the nation to offer a remote hybrid J.D. program and continues to be a leader in online learning for law students.
Tuition at Mitchell Hamline compares to other schools in the region at about $48,000 per year.
University of Minnesota Law School
The University of Minnesota Law School ranks among the top 25 law schools in the nation and is especially well-respected among public law schools. The law school is housed in Walter F. Mondale Hall (named for the 42nd vice president and Minnesota native) on the U of M's West Bank campus in Minneapolis.
Minnesota Law grads have historically achieved impressive bar passage rates, with nearly 96% of first-time test takers passing in 2021. The school also offers one of the nation's largest experiential learning programs, allowing students to get hands-on experience before they graduate. Students can choose from 11 different concentrations, including:
Tuition at the University of Minnesota School of Law comes close to its private school counterparts, around $45,000 per year for Minnesota residents. Its ranking and employment outcomes arguably make it the best value. However, it is also the hardest Minnesota law school to get into — only about 37% of applicants for the class of 2025 received offers of admission.
University of St. Thomas School of Law
The University of St. Thomas School of Law is Minnesota's only Catholic law school. Located in the heart of downtown Minneapolis, the campus is near the federal courthouse and many prominent law firms. Students can even avoid the harsh winter weather by utilizing the nearly ten miles of skyway connecting St. Thomas School of Law with downtown Minneapolis businesses, restaurants, and housing.
St. Thomas is also home to unique institutes and centers of study, such as the Infinity Project, which aims to increase gender diversity in the state and federal judiciaries.
Planning Your Law School Journey
Choosing a law school is just the first step in your law school journey. You'll also need to learn how to study effectively, choose your electives and extracurriculars, and face down the bar exam. FindLaw for Law Students has advice and information for these stages and more of the law school experience.