Education and equality at the forefront of our law degrees

Our History

Since our Thomas R. Kline School of Law of Duquesne University was founded, the focus has been clear: to provide a law education firmly rooted in justice and the pursuit of the truth. The goal has always been to serve others through delivering knowledge with integrity, justice, and by paving the way for the advancement of all people.

Providing that pathway to an honorable pursuit of law is at the core of who we are. We formed in 1911 as an evening program to give working, immigrant families in the Pittsburgh area access to a legal education; it is the fabric of who we are. We remain dedicated to that legacy and offer a full-time day program to complement our evening program.

We welcomed women and underrepresented populations early on. The first woman, Mrs. M. Murphy, was admitted to our Duquesne Kline School of Law in 1914. The first Black man, Theron B. Hamilton, graduated in 1925. We were led from 1970 to 1981 by Dean Davenport, one of the first Black deans of a law school. Ever striving for justice, our clinical education program started in 1995, and our Tribone Center for Clinical Legal Education opened in 2013 to provide student attorneys hands-on client experiences that impact underserved communities.

Our desire to improve circumstances is the impetus for our ongoing change. We regard education as a path to empowerment. Evolving times led to the recent addition of HyFlex, hybrid, and several remote courses that keep in mind the health and safety of our community and the need for flexibility.

As years pass, we continue to trailblaze. We will never stop looking forward-forging toward bigger goals-with equality always at the forefront.

Prepared for anything

Our commitment to provide students with well-rounded law studies is evident in all we do. Our lawyers receive ample experience in legal writing and clinics. Our nationally-award winning Appellate Moot Court and highly regarded Trial Advocacy team both deliver experience in courtroom settings.

We developed a Leadership Fellows Program for students to grow their understanding of their own values and the implications their decisions have on others. Faculty teach the importance of understanding all perspectives, concentrating on training lawyers who are well-prepared for any path.

That dedication is likewise evident in our extraordinarily strong Bar passage rate. We take our pledge seriously to prepare ethical, highly competent, practice-ready lawyers.

Small campus, big opportunities

Our faculty are committed and passionate about the rule of law and teaching it. They offer a combination of legal experience and knowledge on emerging technology and financial literacy to give our students an edge.

Student lawyers here at Duquesne Kline School of Law engage, research, and analyze together on our intimate campus setting. They similarly take advantage of our downtown Pittsburgh location to pursue gainful experience through externships at firms, corporations, and government entities-many of which are just a walk from campus.