New Law Schools Grads Score High

December 8, 2003
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ANN ARBOR — While Cooley Law School’s Grand Rapids branch enters its third semester, Michigan’s newest law school is doing a bit of crowing.

The institution is the Ave Maria School of Law, located just across Plymouth Road from the north campus of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

The school was founded in autumn 2000 in part through contributions from Tom Monaghan, the founder of Domino's Pizza.

What has the school cheering is that it claims its first graduating class last year did slightly better in July’s state bar exams than did U-M’s law school.

Of 42 U-M grads in 2003, 38 passed the bar, while Ave Maria claims that 26 of its 28 first-year graduates passed.

Either way, the two schools’ respective bar pass rates this year — 90.4 percent and 92.8 percent — far outstripped the 68 percent rate for the state as a whole.

Ave Maria, with 225 students, has about half the number of students at U-M’s law school.

The new school lies on Plymouth about three blocks west of Huron Street and about a block east of Ann Arbor’s Muslim Academy.

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