Osgoode is again ranked number one law school in Canada

York’s Osgoode Hall Law School has  been ranked the number one law school in Canada in Canadian Lawyer magazine’s 2008 Law School Survey. It is the second time in three years that Osgoode has taken top honours in the annual survey, winning previously in 2006.

To celebrate the ranking and say thank you to the members of the Osgoode community, including alumni, the law school hosted a celebration yesterday morning. It was standing room only in Osgoode’s mixing area and students gave a rousing cheer when Dean Patrick Monahan and student leaders Victoria Creighton and Jessica Catton, together with alumnus Ngai-On Young (LLB ‘04), unveiled a "#1" banner that will hang in the law school for the next several months. Guests quaffed cupcakes and scooped up some Osgoode memorabilia including giant, red "#1" foam fingers and laptop tags.

Above: Students give a rousing cheer following the announcement by Osgoode Hall Law School Dean Patrick Monahan that the law school had been ranked No. 1 in Canada

"Your degree and the reputation of the law school has been enhanced by this result," said Monahan to those gathered for the celebration. "This is a tremendous accomplishment for the law school."

The magazine’s report on Canada’s law schools appears in the January issue published this week. Osgoode was ranked tops, ahead of 13 other law faculties across the country including the University of Toronto (second place) and the University of New Brunswick (third place).

The magazine took a different approach to its survey this year, calculating grades based on alumni survey results, and then averaging them with the marks from the 2006 and 2007 surveys.

Right: From left, Monahan with alumnus Ngai-On Young and student representatives Victoria Creighton and Jessica Catton unveil the "#1" banner

Osgoode received particularly high marks for its curriculum and faculty, and was strongly recommended by Osgoode alumni as a great place to get a legal education. The magazine’s editors also noted that Osgoode had listened to its alumni over the past few years and made changes that have led to a dramatic improvement in the law school’s standing with recent graduates.

"We are very proud to be a part of this law school," said Creighton, Chair of Osgoode’s Student Caucus. "On behalf of the students, I would like to thank the faculty and staff of Osgoode and in particular, Dean Monahan for his leadership."

"I want to sincerely thank our alumni who participated in the 2008 survey for ranking us tops again," said Monahan. "We are proud of the survey results, which confirm that the law school’s recruitment of several new faculty members as well as our curriculum improvements and ongoing efforts to renovate our facilities are having a positive and beneficial impact on students."

York President & Vice Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri said, "This is great news for Osgoode Hall Law School, and great news for York University. Being ranked the leading law school in Canada by Canadian Lawyer magazine twice in the past three years is a testament to the quality and dedication of the faculty, and to the leadership of Dean Monahan."

            Right: Mamdouh Shoukri

Speaking on behalf of Osgoode’s alumni, Young, a 2004 Osgoode graduate who also served as coach of the Osgoode team that won last year’s prestigious Fraser Milner Casgrain LLP Gale Cup Moot, praised the law school for its initiative and the quality of education.

"I was recently in Nairobi, Kenya, attending a Commonwealth law conference and I was amazed by the people who knew of Osgoode," said Young, now with Cooper Sandler & West.." Everyone I spoke to who knew about Osgoode were very impressed with the law school and it has an international reputation for excellence. The lawyers I spoke to came from all parts of the Commonwealth and they asked me to write an article for their journal and I attribute that to the excellent reputation that Osgoode has in the international community."

Left: Alumnus Ngai-On Young talks about Osgoode’s international profile

Canadian law school graduates, who had been called to the bar within the last five years, were eligible to participate in the survey, which ranked the quality of their alma maters in seven categories: curriculum; faculty; professors; testing; facilities; practice relevance of their education to their actual law practice; and overall recommendation.

To view the full methodology for the survey and the rankings, click here.