From the article:
A study of law review membership indicates that gender and racial diversity on law school faculties may translate into more opportunities for female students.
Law schools with a high percentage of full-time women and minority faculty members on average had a larger percentage of female students on their flagship law reviews during the last academic year, according to New York Law School Law Review's 2010-11 Law Review Diversity Report.
"We know that law review membership has strong implications for postgraduation success in the legal field, and wanted to determine whether the composition of a school's faculty would have any impact on the success of female and minority students on law review," said Jamie Sinclair, a 3L at New York Law School who worked on the study with classmates Dana Brodsky, Maria Cheung, Kelly Garner, Jamie Sinclair and publisher Marcey Grigsby.
The study followed a 2010 report by Ms. JD, a nonprofit organization that seeks to advance women in the legal profession. The Ms. JD report looked at the law review membership and leadership at the top 50 law schools, as ranked by U.S. News & World Report. It found that on average, women accounted for 44 percent of law review membership at those top schools.
The New York Law School Law Review survey focused on law review membership at the 20 law schools with the highest percentages of full-time female faculty, and the 20 schools with the highest percentages of full-time minority faculty. Each of those schools fell outside U.S. News' top 50.
At schools with larger percentages of female faculty members, 52 percent of law review members were women. The figure was nearly 59 percent at the schools with high percentages of minority faculty. Whereas Ms. JD found that a mere 33 percent of law reviews at the top 50 law schools had a female editor in chief, that figure was 60 percent at the schools with many female faculty members and 46 percent at schools with high percentages of minority faculty.
"Getting into law school is only half the battle — for better or for worse, grades matter a lot, and law review membership is one of the most prominent indicators of academic achievement," said Brodsky. "Our survey shows a possible connection between the overall environment a school provides and the achievement of its women and minority students."
The study also indicated that law schools outside the top 50 provide women with a greater opportunity to obtain law review membership and serve in a leadership role, she said.
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