UCLA School of Law is the youngest top law school in the nation. After more than 60 years, our school has never felt bound by outmoded ideas of how law should be taught or studied. Instead, beginning in the 1950s, UCLA created its own tradition - a tradition of innovation. We maintain this tradition persistently, building off our past successes as we propel our school, and students, into a future of unparalleled distinction.
For example, while many law school deans, alumni and students decry the disconnect between what goes on in the classroom and what lawyers do in the "real world," UCLA School of Law has taken a leading role in bridging this gap. Beginning in the early 1970s, under the leadership of Professor David Binder, UCLA's clinics were the first in the nation to teach students systematically about the link between theory and practical skills. This commitment to integrating theory and practice continues today in our extraordinary array of simulated transaction courses and live-client clinics covering the waterfront of practice areas from mergers and acquisitions to workers rights and environmental law.
UCLA also has been in the forefront of efforts to link research to what goes on outside the ivory tower. Increasingly, many of us who teach and write about legal issues understand the importance of learning more about the effects law has on society and on the legal profession. Because law professors typically lack postgraduate training in statistics and because data gathering is expensive and time-consuming, the school created an Empirical Research Group (ERG) in 1999 to work with faculty in designing and implementing sophisticated studies. The ERG has been instrumental in helping our faculty do pathbreaking research on subjects as diverse as the impact of living wage laws on employment and the bankruptcy laws on corporations.
In the last century, think tanks have become an indispensable part of our political system. Beginning in the 1990s, UCLA School of Law created policy centers that enabled the best minds to gather together and focus on policy and legal issues free of partisan influence and ideological biases. UCLA School of Law is proud to lay claim to institutions including The Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation Law and Public Policy, the ERG and the Environmental Law Center, which meet the highest standards of knowledge production. They provide invaluable information for legislators, the judiciary and the public; and provide critical training for the legal community, students and tomorrow's academic and political leaders.
Our academic offerings are second to none. We are one of four law schools in the top twenty to offer a degree specialization in Business Law and Policy. We are the only school in the nation to offer a degree specialization in Critical Race Studies. We have one of the best Programs in Public Interest Law and Policy of any school across the country. The depth and breadth of our offerings in areas ranging from Constitutional Law to Indian Law are unmatched at any other school.
Our respected alumni have blazed paths of excellence in a wide array of industries, changing the way lawyers and legislators approach issues, becoming respected judges throughout the country and changing the face of legal service.
Our commitment to recruiting and retaining the best faculty in the country is unwavering. Our faculty is comprised of the country's top legal minds in the areas of Bankruptcy, Corporate Law, Constitutional Law, Critical Race Theory, Entertainment Law, Environmental Law, Intellectual Property, Islamic Law and Tax Law. Our faculty scholarship on groundbreaking issues such as Anti-Terrorism, Asian Law, Native American Law, Corporate Law, Critical Race Theory, Law and Society and Legal History have generated spirited discussions among the international legal community. Through newer members of our faculty, working alongside our established experts, we are emerging as the strongest faculty in the nation.
In every facet of our institution, through the amazing work of our faculty and staff, and embodied by our diverse and academically astute student body, UCLA School of Law is truly dedicated to pushing the field of law forward and upholding our own tradition of progressive teaching, influential scholarship and enduring innovation.