Maintaining a commitment to its rich legacy of multiculturalism and access, Southwestern is one of the most diverse law schools in the country. There is a strong sense of community among the students who come to Southwestern from virtually every state and a dozen foreign countries. In recent years, Southwestern’s enrollment has included the first- or second-highest representation of African-American students and Latino/Hispanic students of any California law school.
In the most recent entering class:
"Southwestern's diversity really defines the law school. When you are living and working in a place as eclectic as L.A., you have to be capable of understanding the worldviews of the people around you. Everyone at Southwestern offers something different, and it makes for a balanced and transformative legal education."
~ Benjamin Tragish '13, Graduate of the Full-Time Day Program
At Southwestern, we truly value diversity, and we have the trailblazers, the student community and the external recognition to prove it. The law school has received numerous awards for its emphasis on diversity from a variety of organizations. Among the most recent are:
- 2022 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity
- Recognized by preLaw Magazine as one of the Top Ten Most Diverse Law Schools in 2021 and 2020 with a grade of A+.
- The 2021 Princeton Review - #1 Most Competitive Students in California (#5 in the nation)
- The 2020 Princeton Review - #1 Greatest Resources for Minority Students in Southern California (#3 in the state, #9 in the nation)
- Recognized by preLaw Magazine as a "Best [law] School for Asians, Hispanics, and African-Americans" (2020) and among the "Most Diverse Law Schools" (2019)
- Ranked 1st Place for best law school for Hispanics by preLaw Magazine (2020) - based on student enrollment, faculty, and student services
See the full list of awards
- First Place in the Law School Admission Council’s 2018 Diversity Matters Justice Award
- First Place in the Law School Admission Council's 2017 Diversity Matters Award
- California State Bar Organizational Diversity Award - only law school to receive the honor
- Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity - only law school to receive the award all seven years
- Top Ten in Above the Law’s Top Law Schools with the Most Diverse Graduates
- Ranked 11th Place for best law school for Asians by preLaw Magazine (2020) - based on student enrollment, faculty, and student services
- Ranked 21st Place for best law school for African-Americans by preLaw Magazine (2020) - based on student enrollment, faculty, and student services
- Top 25 Law Schools by Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education - for Hispanic enrollment and degrees awarded
- National Jurist “Diversity Honor Roll” - #8 on the list of the most diverse law schools in the country
- California Minority Counsel Law School Racial and Ethnic Diversity Award
- American Bar Association’s Law Students Division, Dean Henry J. Ramsey Jr. Diversity Award
- Many scholarships designated for minority and LGBT students
"Southwestern's commitment to diversity is very important to me. Being in an environment where people have different views enables you to be more aware of how the people on the other side of the table feel, and helps you become a better person."
~ Manolo Maddela, 4L Evening Program
The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Office
The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Office coordinates initiatives to recruit students from diverse backgrounds and lived experiences, retain students of color and students from other underrepresented groups, and foster a campus environment that recognizes, celebrates, and values diversity. The office offers one-on-one counseling and support for students.