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Why W&L Law: 1L Dowin Coffy Gives His Top 6 Reasons

We asked several of our 1L students to discuss their decision to attend W&L Law. Dowin Coffy, a graduate of Andrews University from Miami, gives his top six reasons for coming to W&L.

Choosing a law school is a very time consuming and stressful process. There are many factors to consider and many different sources of information that require careful scrutiny. I chose Washington and Lee University School of Law and I would like to share with you my rationale.

1. The strong academic and historical reputation

This school is one of the oldest universities in the U.S. and a cursory search will show the litany of historical people that have studied at W&L. For a small school, there seem to be many leaders that arise from the ranks here. Congressmen, senators, governors, corporate presidents, Supreme Court justices, and many other people who have contributed immensely to their communities have studied at this school.

2. The third-year curriculum

The legal profession is undergoing massive changes and many people are apprehensive about the quality and substance of a legal education. I was impressed by the fact that Washington and Lee is already getting ahead of the curve and implementing a third-year curriculum that allows students to gain real world experience.

3. Health Law

I am interested in healthcare law. One of the premier health law scholars in America is Professor Tim Jost, who is a faculty member here. For someone interested in becoming a healthcare law expert, there is no better person to learn from than such a distinguished individual.

4. Joint-Degree Program

I am pursuing the joint Master’s in Health Administration and J.D. degree offered in conjunction with Virginia Commonwealth University. VCU has one of the oldest MHA programs in the country, and when two universities with strong reputations come together in order to provide a valuable degree, it will enable you to become a leader in one of the biggest sectors of our economy.

5. Proximity to our nation’s capital

There are distinct advantages with having the nation’s capital within driving distance. There is a huge legal market in DC and being able to drive there for interviews and other factors is a distinct advantage. Also I am far enough from DC to not have to deal with the high cost of living associated with DC living.

6. Small class sizes

The small class sizes at W&L will enable you to truly get to know your professors, and the professors get to know you too. There are distinct advantages when your professors can write a recommendation letter that is not generic and shows that they actually know the person they are recommending. The teachers are very accessible and always willing to assist.