Juris Doctor (JD)
Why Choose Juris Doctor (JD)?
Western New England University will inspire and support you to become a true student of law and a skilled practitioner. In the JD program, you will learn the science of legal study as a methodology to analyze legal and social issues. You will develop the ability to perform careful research and write thorough and precise legal memoranda and scholarly papers. You will be prepared to artfully articulate persuasive legal arguments and apply them in a professional context through clinics, externships, and moot court experiences. In small classes, you will be taught by full-time faculty who teach all required day and evening courses. You will graduate prepared to use your law degree to make an impact on your profession and society.
What Will You Study?
The JD program is structured to prepare you for the practice of law in any American jurisdiction. You will begin with several required courses that form the foundation for more advanced legal studies. Research and Writing is a required first-year course that teaches the basic techniques of legal research, writing, and analysis. While students are not required to pursue a concentration, you may choose to do so to focus your studies on a specific practice area. The experiential learning requirement provides opportunities to gain real-world legal experience. All students are required to complete 20 hours of pro bono legal work prior to graduation. Study options include full-time, part-time day, or part-time evening.
Get started. Learn the details about applying to the Juris Doctor program and our admissions requirements.
Our curriculum integrates traditional classroom instruction in legal doctrine, analysis, and problem-solving with experiential learning in a range of clinical settings. Learn more about it and download a sample program of study.
Are you interested in criminal law? Do you want to make an impact on gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity issues? Or do you see great opportunity in estate planning? Concentrations enable you to customize your legal education to gain added depth in practice areas you feel most passionate about. Explore our concentrations.
Part-time Evening Program
Ideal for working professionals, the Part-time Evening program offers all required and elective courses during evening hours (typically Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday). You can complete the program in four years by taking elective courses during the summer terms.
Bar Preparation and Academic Success
The School of Law is committed to preparing you to be a successful law student. Students can utilize the expertise of the Director of Academic Success Programs and our Director of Bar Admission Programs to learn the best methods for class preparation and exam-taking. The School also offers a for-credit bar prep course. Learn more about Year-By-Year Steps to Bar Exam prep and about our Academic Success program.
Our rigorous Juris Doctor program attracts students with both a passion for justice and desire to develop practical lawyering skills before they graduate. Want to know more about our most recent incoming Juris Doctor class? Read about our Class Profile, faculty, affiliations, and more.
The legal principles you learn in your first year will be put into action in your second and third years. You can assist real clients in one of our many clinics, gain experience through an externship, research and write a scholarly note for Law Review, participate in a moot court or other competition team, or receive credit through study abroad.