Posted by Mary Wimberley on 2010-10-19

Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law reports a fall 2010 entering class that was selected from the largest pool of applicants in the law school’s 163-year history.

The 166-member first year class was chosen from 1,678 applicants, which translates into 10 applicants for every seat, and an application volume increase of 71 percent over 2008-09.

Nationally, at American Bar Association accredited law schools, applications in 2009-10 increased only 7.1 percent over the previous year, according to data from the Law School Admissions Council.

The impressive application data is not the only record-breaker for the Cumberland Class of 2013, whose members hail from 14 states and hold undergraduate degrees in 43 different majors from 61 colleges and universities across the country.

The class also includes the highest percentage of minority students, 18 percent, in the law school’s history.  The previous high of minority students in a Cumberland first year class was 14.2 percent in fall 2005. The law school also reports an increase in undergraduate grade point average and law school admission test scores in this year’s group of “1L” students over that of previous years.

“While their interests and backgrounds are diverse, the members of the class of 2013 are motivated by a strong desire to change the lives of others for the better,” said Jennifer Y. Sims, Cumberland assistant dean for admissions. “I am pleased that they will soon become the exceptional lawyers for which this law school is so well known.”

Applications for this fall’s entering class came from 45 states, two Canadian provinces and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Cumberland alumni are in 48 states and abroad, working in all aspects of the legal field, including several presidential and gubernatorial appointments.

Applications for the Fall 2011 entering class are being accepted now.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. The Wall Street Journal ranks Samford 1st nationally for student engagement and U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 66th in the nation for best undergraduate teaching and 104th nationally for best value. Samford enrolls 5,683 students from 47 states and 19 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference, and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.