The University of Maryland School of Law's admissions policy focuses on the academic potential of applicants coupled with a flexible assessment of applicants' talents, experiences and potential to contribute to the learning of those around them. Each applicant is evaluated on the basis of all the information available in their file, including a personal statement, letters of recommendation, and resume.
We expect applicants to have different backgrounds and experiences, and to have many reasons for wanting to study law. We engage in a highly individualized, holistic review of each applicant's file, giving consideration to all the ways an applicant might contribute to a diverse educational environment. The qualities of students we seek may be reflected in their background characteristics such as geographic origin, cultural and language backgrounds; racial, social, disability and economic barriers overcome; interpersonal skills, demonstrated by extracurricular pursuits, work or service experience, and leadership activities; potential for intellectual and social growth, demonstrated by personal talents and skills, maturity and compassion; and other special circumstances and characteristics that, when combined with academic skills necessary for sound legal education, promise to make a special contribution to the community.
Our admissions policy aspires to achieve that diversity that has the potential to enrich everyone's education. When students have the greatest possible variety of background, classroom discussion is livelier, more spirited, and simply more enlightened and interesting. Student body diversity better prepares all students to assume leadership roles in an increasing diverse society. Along with other diversity goals, we seek to enroll meaningful numbers of students from groups that have been historically discriminated against to ensure their ability to make unique contributions to the character of the School's educational and social environment.
In considering the academic record of any applicant, the School of Law may consider the nature and level of challenge of the applicant's academic work, including college grading practices, quality of college student body and course selection patterns; trend of college grades; graduate study; outside work or extensive extracurricular activities while in college; time interval and activities between college graduation and application to law school; and physical, social or economic hardships.