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September 11, 2007

Will '10 Be a Good Year?

By Sumeera Younis

Don’t they look much younger than us? Did we giggle that much in the library? Already I hear the questions resonating through the halls of Hutchins. We have seen new names selling tickets on LawOpen; we have seen the eager faces crowded outside of classrooms, anxious to grab the most coveted seats. But who is this class of 2010?

Though they may look like undergrads, the new crop of budding young litigators averages 24 years of age, just like the class of 2009. At least one newbie has yet to reach drinking age, while the oldest, at 36, makes even 2nd year SQUALSA members feel young and limber. Just over two-thirds of the incoming class took a year or more off after undergrad, and 15 percent of the class earned advanced degrees before joining us.

Many members of the new class are treading ground that their parents did not: more than a third come from families where at least one parent did not attend college; 10 percent come from families where neither parent went to college.

Many members of the class of 2010 took service positions before law school: six have Fulbright Scholarship, seven did Peace Corps, five did Americorps, and 12 participated in the Teach for America program.

While these new kids may not share our advanced understanding of expectation damages or future interests, they did do some impressive LSATing. The median score of 169 (97th percentile) is the highest ever for an entering class at Michigan. The median undergrad GPA of 3.64 is second only to the 3.67 posted by the class of 2009.

For those of you who, like me, were at OCI and could have sworn that you had never seen some of the faces there before, you may have been right. We are joined this fall by 42 second-year transfers, which is up significantly from last year.

If you haven’t already noticed exotic accents in many of your classes, we have 46 LLMs with us now, and international students make up nearly seven percent of the incoming class. 17 countries are represented, as well as 43 of the states, Washington, DC, and Puerto Rico.

Fully a quarter of the members of the class of 2010 are ethnically diverse: 12.3% are Asian American, 6.1% are African American, 5.0% are Latino, and 1.6% are Native American.

Though the gap is narrowing, historically Michigan has seen less female students than males, and this year it is no exception. The incoming class is 55% male and 45% female. Ladies, you know that means we are going to have to do a little extra talking in class to keep things balanced.

At first I was a little put off by all the new faces, feeling somehow that a group of outsiders had come into our sacred space in Hutchins Hall. But the more I learn about this incoming class, the more confident I am that each coming year is going to keep up the awesome legacy of Michigan Law.