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Law in Action in the Nation’s Capital PRACTICAL PREPARATION


GW Law students participate in law not just as it exists in textbooks but as it operates in the real world. They gain practical skills in externship opportunities with the leading policymaking offices and institutions that surround our campus, in our legal clinics, and through pro bono activities.

GW Law’s campus is just four blocks from the White House; across the street from the World Bank; and within walking distance of major international organizations, federal government agencies, law firms, nongovernmental organizations, courts, and international dispute settlement bodies. Our students gain practical experience in externships in these and other nearby institutions.

A DYNAMIC COMMUNITY Our students benefit from the dedication of our world-renowned faculty of scholars and expert practitioners, degree programs and curriculum that address society’s most-often debated legal and policy issues, and personalized support to ensure success inside and outside the classroom.

GW Law’s full-time faculty and deans are expert teachers, scholars, and practitioners well known in the legal community. Pictured (left) is Professor David Fontana.



Our Credentials WE HAVE HISTORY. As the first law school in the nation’s capital, GW Law offers well-established academic programs long at the forefront of their fields. For instance, the origins of GW’s Intellectual Property Law Program date back to 1895, when the Law School established a master’s of patent law program; its alumni already had written the patents for Bell’s telephone, Mergenthaler’s Linotype machine, and Eastman’s roll film camera, among hundreds of others. For more than 100 years, GW Law has been a national leader in intellectual property education and scholarship. The Government Contracts Program, established in 1960 by legendary Professors Emeriti Ralph C. Nash, Jr., and John Cibinic, Jr., is the only one of its kind in the United States and is recognized around the world as a leader in the field. The Environmental and Energy Law Program has been at the forefront of education in the field for more than 40 years. Established at the beginning of the modern environmental law



GW LAW FACTS Student Body Total enrollment: 1,992 era, the program has expanded its focus to encompass international issues related not only to the environment but to energy sourcing as well. For more than 40 years, The Jacob Burns Community Legal Clinics have offered students the opportunity to tackle issues ranging from criminal justice, immigration, and international human rights to the needs of small businesses, providing students with crucial hands-on experience while offering vital legal services to the Washington, D.C., community. Our programs in International and Comparative Law and in Litigation and Dispute Resolution are among the best in the nation. The international law faculty includes a former judge who served on the International Court of Justice in The Hague, the first woman nominated by the United States to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, and a renowned scholar of Chinese law. The Litigation and Dispute Resolution Program attracts faculty that includes sitting judges from local and federal courts, officials from the U.S. Department of Defense, and litigators from top law firms.

Full-time JD students: 1,351 Part-time JD students: 322 Women in JD program: 45% Minorities in JD program: 27% Full-time graduate students: 201 Part-time post-JD students: 99 States represented among JD students: 44 Countries represented among JD students: 15 Countries represented among graduate law degree students: 90



WE MAKE HISTORY. During the past five years, GW Law has continued to develop its offerings in established program areas such as National Security and U.S. Foreign Relations Law and Business and Finance Law. GW Law recently hosted international symposiums on the cutting-edge issues of cybersecurity and Internet freedom. The recently created Center for Law, Economics & Finance is a think tank within the Law School designed as a focal point in Washington, D.C., for the study and debate of major issues in economic and financial law confronting the United States and the global community. Above all, GW Law remains committed to students. From each student’s first year, the Law School offers mentorship and career development in small-group and one-on-one settings. GW Law is dedicated to providing for students a supportive, dynamic community in which they can engage with the law as it is created and applied.



GW Law students participated in a town hall event with President Barack Obama, which aired live from the Newseum in Washington, D.C.





A Law School for the 21st Century REAL-WORLD ENGAGEMENT IN A VIBRANT COMMUNITY GW Law’s full-time faculty members routinely testify before Congress, litigate leading cases, collaborate with think tanks, serve on international courts and commissions, and work at the highest levels of government. Our adjunct faculty includes the leading lawyers in the legal capital of the world—we even have a Supreme Court justice teaching constitutional law. Our campus is alive with intellectual activity. Approximately 430 events take place on the Law School campus each year, an average of three per day during the school year. These events include a two-day summit meeting of the U.S. Supreme Court justices and judges from the European Court of Human Rights; a cybersecurity working group featuring high-ranking officials

from the U.S. Military’s Cybercommand; public events with SEC commissioners, members of Congress, the Legal Adviser of the Department of State, and leading scholars; and conferences and workshops with leading thinkers and policymakers discussing voting rights and other contemporary social justice issues. Amid this vibrant environment, GW Law students interact with Supreme Court justices, World Bank officials, financial regulators, military leaders, and Department of State lawyers. They also work on public policy projects tackling the important challenges of our time.

Professor Edward T. Swaine (center, on left) testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Holocaust-era claims.



PRACTICAL PREPARATION With one foot inside the classroom and the other in the legal world, GW Law students take part in real and practical preparation for their legal careers. At The Jacob Burns Community Legal Clinics, our students represent actual clients in cases under faculty supervision. In fact, in the past few years, our students have successfully argued for asylum for clients, litigated human trafficking cases, and argued a winning case before the Maryland Court of Appeals that changed how criminal trials are conducted across the state. The Field Placement Office matches more than 600 students each year with dynamic, hands-on externships in government, public interest, and the judiciary. Students receive course credit, supervision from leading legal practitioners, and practical experience that helps jump-start their careers. GW Law’s pro bono activities can be traced back to 1914, but the Law School has recently expanded and re-energized its pro bono program. Headed by Alan Morrison, one of the legendary public interest lawyers in U.S. history, the program builds additional opportunities for engagement, with programs ranging from helping the wrongly convicted to writing legal documents for cancer patients to working with the Special Master in charge



of assessing damages after the BP oil spill. In addition, the school awards nearly 100 summer public interest fellowships annually and provides loan repayment assistance to graduates embarking on public interest careers.

GW LAW FACTS Faculty Student/faculty ratio: 15:1 Full-time faculty: 100

MENTORING, COUNSELING, AND CAREER DEVELOPMENT As soon as our students arrive on campus, GW Law helps them develop their career strategies through an integrated professional development training program that offers mentorships, weekly seminars, and one-on-one interaction with career development professionals, faculty, and alumni. The Center for Professional Development and Career Strategy assists students at every stage, from identifying summer job opportunities to helping graduates launch their careers. The center’s counselors comprise one of the largest legal career counseling teams in the country, and the counselors have extensive experience working in both the public and private sectors. In addition, the center hosts nearly 100 programs annually, including panels and networking opportunities, the fall recruitment program, the spring interviewing program, diversity events and programs, and the public sector recruitment program.

Part-time faculty: more than 250 Faculty members who have clerked for U.S. Supreme Court justices: 8 Faculty members who were Rhodes Scholars: 5

All incoming JD students receive comprehensive professional development and mentoring throughout their first year and access to a one-on-one alumni mentor.

During the past eight years, six Law School graduates have been selected to clerk for justices of the U.S. Supreme Court.



A VAST CURRICULUM GW Law offers more than 275 elective courses to help students build their expertise in nearly every area of the law.

A WORLD-RENOWNED FACULTY Our students are instructed by dedicated legal scholars and practitioners who have affected decision making on global bodies, including the International Court of Justice and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights; served in the Obama and Bush administrations; and held prestigious clerkships, including those with sitting members of the Supreme Court.

A VARIETY OF STUDENT ACTIVITIES GW Law students may round out their educational experience through membership on three skills boards, where they can compete in moot court competitions, arguing cases before eminent jurists such as Justice Elena Kagan of the U.S. Supreme Court. Our students also may join one of the Law School’s eight student-edited scholarly journals or any of the 50 active student groups.





Joint degrees are offered in the areas of business, public administration, public health, public policy, international affairs, history/U.S. legal history, and women’s studies.


Students can study abroad during the summer at the GWOxford Program in International Human Rights Law and the GW-Munich Intellectual Property Law Summer Program. Additional study abroad opportunities include the GW-Augsburg (Germany) Student Exchange Program, the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, and Universitá Commerciale “Luigi Bocconi” in Milan, Italy. GW Law is a member of the North American Consortium on Legal Education, which allows students to study at member Canadian and Mexican law schools.

Master of Science in Government Contracts (offered jointly with the School of Business)

Non–JD Master’s Degrees: Master of Studies in Law–Intellectual Property

LLM in: Business and Finance Law Energy and Environmental Law Environmental Law General LLM Government Procurement Law Government Procurement and Environmental Law

A GLOBAL ALUMNI NETWORK With more than 25,000 alumni throughout the world and in every area of practice, GW Law connects students with a vast network of mentors, advisors, and career contacts. Our alumni live and work in more than 100 countries. The Alumni Career Advisor Network puts current students and recent graduates in touch with alumni who can provide career advice and professional opportunities.

Intellectual Property Law International and Comparative Law International Environmental Law Litigation and Dispute Resolution National Security and U.S. Foreign Relations Law SJD in various fields



5 GW Law by the Numbers

Five current members of the U.S. Supreme Court have come to campus to preside over the finals of the Van Vleck Constitutional Law Moot Court competition.

430 14

GW Law hosts 14 on-campus advocacy competitions each year.

100 14


Approximately 430 events take place at GW Law each year.

GW Law hosts nearly 100 career programs annually, including recruitment and networking events.


GW Law alumni live and work in 100 countries.


Our student-faculty ratio is 15:1.


Number of Rhodes Scholars among the faculty (Professors Renee Lettow Lerner, Eleanor Brown, Jay Butler, Jeffrey Manns, and Susan Karamanian)


During the 2012–13 school year, more than 600 students participated in approved field placements.




The class of 2013 contributed more than 22,458 pro bono hours.


GW Law offers more than 275 elective courses.

During the 2011–12 academic year, seven Supreme Court justices of the United States visited GW Law (Alito, Breyer, Kagan, Kennedy, Scalia, Sotomayor, and Thomas).

Number of active student organizations in the Law School


Number of studentled scholarly journals

Law School 2000 H Street, NW Washington, D.C. 20052

GW Law General Overview Brochure Fall 2013