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LEGAL STUDIES

Why Choose Legal Studies?

The Legal Studies major at Elmira College seeks to instill students with creative and critical thinking skills as applied to a wide range of legal topics. The purpose of this wide array of course offerings is to prepare students for their first two years of law school, or to immediately enter the field as a para- practitioner. To this end, from day-one, students are pushed via the Socratic method to engage with the materials on a deeper level to sharpen their minds and shape their character. In addition, when it comes time to take the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT), students can take the exam on Elmira's campus.

What Legal Studies Will Teach You!

Legal Studies is a discipline that explores the theory and practical application of its many sub-disciplines. Core classes include survey of American law, criminal law, criminal procedure, constitutional law, business law, evidence, legal research, and writing. Students are then able to tailor their experience through numerous elective options – including participation in a mock trial.

Where Legal Studies Can Take You!

Students who have majored in legal studies primarily attend law school or enter the legal profession but it is a utilitarian degree. Students often double or triple major in Legal Studies, Criminal Justice, and Political Science and are still able to graduate early. The Legal Studies major has a track record of success in placing students in law schools – a recent graduate of the program was awarded a full-tuition scholarship to attend the University of Richmond: School of Law.

Why Choose Legal Studies?

The Legal Studies major at Elmira College seeks to instill students with creative and critical thinking skills as applied to a wide range of legal topics. The purpose of this wide array of course offerings is to prepare students for their first two years of law school, or to immediately enter the field as a para- practitioner. To this end, from day-one, students are pushed via the Socratic method to engage with the materials on a deeper level to sharpen their minds and shape their character. In addition, when it comes time to take the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT), students can take the exam on Elmira's campus.

What Legal Studies Will Teach You!

Legal Studies is a discipline that explores the theory and practical application of its many sub-disciplines. Core classes include survey of American law, criminal law, criminal procedure, constitutional law, business law, evidence, legal research, and writing. Students are then able to tailor their experience through numerous elective options – including participation in a mock trial.

Where Legal Studies Can Take You!

Students who have majored in legal studies primarily attend law school or enter the legal profession but it is a utilitarian degree. Students often double or triple major in Legal Studies, Criminal Justice, and Political Science and are still able to graduate early. The Legal Studies major has a track record of success in placing students in law schools – a recent graduate of the program was awarded a full-tuition scholarship to attend the University of Richmond: School of Law.

The below links provide a helpful guide to the most current major/minor core courses and electives. Full program requirements and course descriptions are located in the Elmira College Bulletin.

Contacts:

  • Dr. Daniel N. Clay, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice and Legal Stiudies; Pre-Law Advisor | dclay@elmira.edu

Full-time Faculty:

  • Dr. Daniel N. Clay, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice and Legal Stiudies; Pre-Law Advisor

Honor Society:

  • Phi Delta Phi - Phi Delta Phi is the International Legal Honor Society, established in the year 1869 to promote a higher standard of professional ethics, and is among the oldest of legal organizations in North America. Phi Delta Phi's reputation as an organization devoted to legal excellence has spread throughout the world, with many successful chapters in México and Europe. Phi Delta Phi has one hundred and thirty- one active chapters – called Inns and Halls – and has initiated in excess of 200,000 members.

Clubs:

  • Elmira College Mock Trial Team
  • Pre-Law Student's Association

Internships:

Students must complete an internship in their field of study while attending Elmira College. To aid students, the Legal Studies Department offers LAW 4999: "Internship in the Legal Field" that may be taken for 3.00-6.00 credits and which counts towards an elective credit in order for students to work with local, state, and national organizations during normal working hours. Students have interned with the prosecutor's office, the district attorney's office, private firms, non-governmental organizations, etc. This speaks to the credibility of the Elmira College Legal Studies Program and the types of internship that students may complete.


Career Opportunities:

The vast majority of Legal Studies majors attend law school, with some interested in immediately joining the workforce as a paralegal, legal assistance, etc. Additionally, some majors go on to pursue careers in different areas where a legal background is helpful but not necessary (e.g. politics).