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Want a Federal Clerkship? Go to These Schools.

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By Jonathan R. Tung, Esq. on August 05, 2016 1:59 PM

Some law students dream of BigLaw riches. But another common ambition is the judicial clerkship, particularly the federal clerkship.

Well, everyone is all about stats and metrics these days so we thought we'd bring your attention to those schools which seem to be particularly talented at funneling their grads into federal clerkship seats. Take a look.

Business Insider's Rank

What business does Business Insider have in combing through the ABA's law school data? Well, some of us are curious to see which schools have the highest percentage of their grads getting a coveted federal clerkship -- and Business Insider did the work for us, putting together a ranking of schools based on federal clerkships. We'll just focus on the lists top five schools for sake of time and space.

1. Yale Law School

You knew that one of the Ivies was going to be at the top of the list, so you can pat yourself on the back. According to the ABA numbers, more than a third of Yale-ites who graduate from its law school end up with a federal clerkship. That's an incredibly high number.

2. Stanford Law

Moving over to the Bay Area, the "Ivy of the West Coast" comes in at a respectable 26 percent -- a little over a quarter of its grads. But even we were a little surprised that it did so much better than Harvard.

3. Harvard Law

When it comes to being associated with upper crust, Harvard is usually a featured name. About 19 percent of grads from its law school procure federal clerkships. This may seem low as compared to Stanford, but let us compare apples to apples. We're talking two different regions, two different class sizes, and two different cultures. Besides, this probably means those who could have taken federal clerkships took jobs and BigLaw instead. Still crying for Harvard grads?

4. University of Virginia Law

Ah, yes, UVA, the "academical village" school that Thomas Jefferson himself founded. There's something kind of distinguished and staid about this T14 school that definitely sets it apart from the rest of the pack. And its placement of grads comes in at an admirable16 percent.

5. University of Chicago Law

Where of President Obama worked before he was president, Chicago Law comes in fifth in our list at 15 percent, just a hair under UVA -- it could even be a rounding error. Frankly, we seriously doubt that it's going to make that much of a difference to your career.

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