USM’s Accelerated Graduate Pathways to Law are for students who wish to complete both a Bachelor’s and a J.D. degree in six years rather than the usual seven. These detailed plans save students one academic year of undergraduate education, as well as one year’s worth of undergraduate fees, tuition, and expenses. The chance to enter the professional field a year early is an experiential advantage and has a beneficial impact upon earning potential as well.
Program and Admission Requirements
In order to be considered for admission, a student must:
- Successfully complete all but 30 credit hours of an approved Bachelor’s degree pathway at the University of Southern Maine by the end of their junior status. Eligible majors are English, History, Linguistics, Philosophy, Political Science, Sociology, Economics, Geography-Anthropology, Criminology, Liberal Studies-Humanities, Psychology, Environmental Planning and Policy, Social and Behavioral Sciences, and Women and Gender Studies;
- Maintain an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.5 (3.7 or higher strongly recommended);
- Achieve a Law School Admission Test (LSAT) score that is no lower than the current median LSAT posted on the Maine Law website;
- Complete all required Law School application materials (also posted on the Maine Law website), including compliance with all other Law School admission requirements by December 1 of the year prior to the one in which the applicant would begin law school;
- Be in good academic and disciplinary standing at the University of Southern Maine at the time of acceptance to the Law School;
- Meet the standards for the Character and fitness portion of the Law School application;
- Submit at least three (3) letters of reference, one of which is from a USM faculty member familiar with the student’s maturity, motivation, and academic ability to study law, and which details the student’s qualifications and abilities in each area.
We strongly encourage students considering or participating in the Accelerated Law Pathways to consult the Maine Law entering class profile page for a better understanding of the typical undergraduate GPAs and LSAT scores of entering students.
Students who do not meet the criteria listed above are still eligible to apply for admission to the Law School while completing their undergraduate degree, but will not be considered part of the Accelerated Law Pathway.
University of Maine School of Law Tuition
For all Law course work, students are charged the Maine School of Law per credit tuition rate. While the credits serve as both the final credits of the undergraduate degree and the first year of the Law curriculum, students are only paying the one tuition rate. Students may be able to retain their undergraduate merit aid for use during the fourth year of study (1L coursework), but it is imperative that a student meet with a Financial Aid Counselor to confirm retention of undergraduate merit aid.
How to Apply:
- On the Common App, select your preferred choice of major. You will then see the following option: “Please indicate your interest in one of the following accelerated pathway options at the University of Southern Maine” from which you can select a Pathway.
- In the University of Maine System application, select your First Choice Major and then you will see the following drop-down menu: Accelerated Graduate Degree Pathway (First Choice Major), from which you can select a Pathway.
- If you are a Transfer or Continuing Student, please contact the University of Southern Maine Advising Office to meet with an academic advisor who can review your previous coursework and determine your eligibility for entering an Accelerated Graduate Pathway. Please call (207) 780-4040 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.