The University of North Carolina School of Law was one of the first public law schools established in the U.S. It has long been regarded as one of the country’s best law schools, producing graduates who play influential roles at the state, regional, and national levels. Carolina Law has a vigorous commitments to excellence in legal education and to public service – which is part of the reason why it is also respected as one of the country’s best values in legal education, an institution that provides outstanding legal training at an accessible price.

Carolina Law students can pursue joint degrees that combine a J.D. with graduate study in business, library science, public administration, public policy, public health, regional planning, social work, or sports administration. They can also get involved in centers conducting legal research in banking and finance, civil rights, and entrepreneurial law. Opportunities like these, combined with a diverse yet close-knit academic community, top-flight faculty, a vigorous alumni network, and state-of-the-art library and classroom facilities, promise that Carolina Law will maintain its place as an influential force in American law for decades to come.

Below is the 3-page transcript of our interview with Michael J. States, J.D, Assistant Dean for Admissions at University of North Carolina School of Law.

What changes are occurring on campus? How do you see Carolina Law evolving?

Carolina Law is committed to creating and developing Centers and Initiatives that push the frontiers of teaching and research and serve the people and institutions of North Carolina and the region. The School of Law currently boasts nationally recognized programs in banking and financial services law, civil rights law and entrepreneurial law – all key areas tied to our history and the unique opportunities unfolding in North Carolina and the South.

Last year, applications for your law school increased by 28%. Are you seeing any early indications of how this year’s application volume may compare to the 2003-2004 season? How about the demographic make up of the applicant pool?

Our early indications are that our pool will be as competitive as last year. We won’t know for sure until the end of December or early January.

What general advice would you like applicants considering Carolina Law to know?

It is important to answer the questions on the application completely and to follow the directions as given. Be completely honest and forthright in your answers and write the personal statement as asked.

What opportunities are available to your students to gain practical law experience prior to graduation?

There are three experiential learning opportunities available for students. The Clinical Program offers students the chance to gain practical lawyering skills in one of three clinics: criminal, civil, and community development law. The Externship Program provides students with the opportunity to gain real-world lawyering experience under the guidance of law school faculty. Students earn pass/fail credit for work in carefully chosen legal settings. The Pro Bono Program gives students the chance to perform community service and to get practical experience working on real cases. Students who perform 75 hours of pro bono work receive a certificate from the North Carolina Bar Association.

When do you encourage applicants to apply?

We encourage students to apply as soon as possible after October 1.

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