South Carolina Law School Dean Accidentally Leaks Bar Exam Results

Starting a new role often comes with growing pains and mistakes, a lesson William C. Hubbard recently learned. The first-year dean of the University of South Carolina’s School of Law accidentally emailed his students the confidential results of their bar exams.

Bar Exam ResultsPhoto Credit: Shutterstock

Hubbard was appointed to dean in June capitalizing on a strong legal background and resume. He practiced business law as a partner at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough before serving as President of the American Bar Association for the 2014-2015 term. He was also a 2016 ABA Journal Legal Rebel, was on the University’s Board of Trustees and is currently a special adviser for the ABA Center for Innovation.

Hubbard’s misstep came when he received the results for his students’ July bar exam results by email and was elated to find that 82% of his students passed. To showcase the exceptional performance to the students, he quickly forwarded the email to them without realizing it contained attached files that named students who failed and listed grades by student.

He quickly sent a follow-up email requesting that students delete the first. It read, “Please delete the message I just sent about bar passage. It was sent with the wrong attachment for which I am very sorry. Please do not open and, if opened, do not reveal any information in that attachment to anyone.”

Bar exam results are extremely confidential and names of those who fail are never to be published.

Hubbard reportedly appeared “devastated” by the error and he made it a point to reach out to students affected by the mistake.

“It’s a mistake I deeply regret. I take full responsibility for the error, and I am profoundly sorry for any harm or distress I may have caused,” Hubbard told The State newspaper. “I’ve sent a personal email to every one of those students, and I’ve had an email dialogue with some of them and some phone conversations and plan to make myself available to any student who wants to meet.”

Some students have shown support for Hubbard understanding his error stemmed from his excitement about their positive scores.

Although his tenure as dean hasn’t gotten off to the smoothest of starts, Hubbard is determined to not only rectify his error, but also to prove to his students he can lead many more successful classes across the bar exam finish line.

For more articles from Haute Lawyer, visit