About Hamline Law

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    Why Hamline Law?

    At a Glance

    Small classes, top-ranked professors, and a spirit of collaboration distinguish Hamline University School of Law, where students are challenged to become competent, professional, and ethical lawyers with a global perspective.

    Hamline University School of Law is accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA) and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS). It offers a broad curriculum with opportunities to focus within 12 areas of legal specialty, as well as two nationally ranked Centers of Excellence. Hamline receives high marks from students for its passionate faculty, student-centered atmosphere, and strong opportunities to develop legal skills -- both locally and abroad -- while learning the law within a friendly campus community.

    Campus & Location

    Hamline is located in the heart of the vibrant Twin Cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. The area boasts ample opportunities for outstanding cultural, social and recreational activity. For those who chose to remain after graduation, the Twin Cities is a good place to build a career. Nearly two dozen Fortune 500 companies make their headquarters in the Twin Cities urban area, including 3M, Cargill, Medtronic, Target Corporation and General Mills. Forbes recently ranked Minneapolis as America's Healthiest City (Sept. 2011) and the Best City for Finding Employment (March 2011), while naming the Minneapolis-Saint Paul area as America's tenth best city for young professionals (July 2011). In addition, Shape.com has called Minneapolis the Fittest City in America.

    Degrees Offered

    Hamline Law offers both full-time and part-time JD options. In addition to a full-time, three-year program, Hamline offers one of only two ABA-accredited weekend JD programs in the nation. The degree offerings at Hamline Law also include a Master in Law (LLM) for International Lawyers and a Master in the Study of Law (MSL). Dual degrees are available in public administration, business management, nonprofit management, fine arts in creative writing, and organizational leadership.

    Programs & Curriculum

    Hamline Law students experience nationally recognized programs and curriculum. The Hamline Law curriculum supports 12 organized tracks of study or focus areas, including business and commercial law, child advocacy, criminal law, dispute resolution, government and regulatory affairs, health law, intellectual property, international law, labor law, litigation and trial practice, property law, and public law and human rights.

    Hamline’s nationally ranked Dispute Resolution Institute provides a full range of ADR-related programming, including a summer institute, January term courses, certificate programs, and a bi-annual symposium. Meanwhile, the Health Law Institute, also nationally ranked, focuses on the growth of health law, federal regulation, tort reform, medical device development and regulation, and ethics.

    Experiential Learning: The Hamline Progression

    Experiential learning is central to a Hamline Law education.  Hamline’s experiential program is unique because it builds a progression of experiential learning throughout the curriculum.  This includes skills labs in the second year, where students in small lab sections apply the law they are learning to perform tasks that lawyers practice:  client interviewing, analyzing facts, negotiating, and advocating.  In the third year, Hamline Law students engage in bridge-to-practice programs, including the Semester-in-Practice program that allows students to work 30-40 hours per week at a law office with teaching support from a faculty member; and the Experiential Third Year program, which allows students to self-design a third year program that includes at least 15 skills or experiential credits, working with an advisory team that includes two law professors and one member of the practicing bar.

    Hamline’s eight clinics offer students the opportunity to develop litigation, transactional and alternative dispute resolution skills. Hamline is also home to two scholarly journals, the student-staffed Hamline Law Review and the Hamline Journal of Public Law and Policy.  Experiential learning at Hamline also includes unique study-abroad opportunities associated with world-class universities in London and Jerusalem, as well as a comprehensive competitions program that features moot court and similar competitions that involve legal research, brief writing, and oral argument.

    Hamline’s externship program combines extensive field experience with a classroom component focused on enhancing a student’s lawyering skills. An externship provides students with the opportunity to learn how to practice law by doing legal work and observations under the close supervision of an attorney or judicial mentor in private law firms, courts, corporations, government agencies, and other settings. While earning academic credit, students observe the work of a lawyer or judge, and perform legal work such as interviewing and counseling clients, doing legal research, drafting memoranda, court orders, and other legal documents, doing factual investigation, and sometimes advocating in court as certified student attorneys. 


    Hamline Law is part of a warm, collegial campus with state-of-the art facilities. The architectural design of the law school encourages easy access to faculty and administrative offices. The Annette K. Levine moot courtroom offers a technologically relevant setting for moot court competitions and for observing actual court proceedings. Hamline’s law library provides modern collections of print, electronic and microform resources, and has more than 300,000 volumes and electronic databases. In addition, students have access to the libraries of seven other colleges and universities through a consortium arrangement.

    Expenses & Financial Aid

    The Hamline University Office of Financial Aid assists all prospective and current law students with financial aid-related questions, as well as the processing of financial aid packages. Hamline Law is a private institution, and merit-based and endowed scholarships are available for first-year students.


    At Hamline Law, expert, approachable professors challenge students to learn the law and understand its impact on both individual clients and society. Faculty members conduct cutting-edge scholarship in exciting areas of modern legal practice, and they are equally passionate about helping students learn to make their own mark. Adjunct faculty complement the full-time faculty by teaching upper division courses in specialty areas. Hamline Law has recently invested in expanding its faculty, with nationally recognized experts in bio-ethics, health law, intellectual property, international trade, corporate law, and critical race theory. These faculty members join a faculty nationally recognized for scholarship and academic leadership in dispute resolution, commercial law, constitutional law, and many other fields. The Hamline faculty is committed to an “open door” policy to help students learn and practice the law.

    Student Body

    Hamline Law has an active, diverse student body of approximately 535 students. As a student-centered community, student organizations play a key role in the vitality of the law school environment. More than 25 student organizations focus on students’ cultural and professional interests.


    The Hamline Law admissions team is here to help. The admission selection process emphasizes a rigorous but fair examination of each individual application. In addition to the LSAT and undergraduate GPA, the admissions committee gives significant weight to other factors, including motivation, personal experiences, employment history, graduate education, maturity, letters of recommendation, and the ability to express one’s interest in the study of law. Hamline’s admission policy is designed to enhance the academic rigor, professional dedication, social concern, and diversity of the student body, including cultural, economic, sexual orientation, racial, and ethnic composition.

    Career Services

    Hamline Law’s Career Services Office provides job search and professional development assistance to JD students and alumni while maintaining important relationships with key employers. The Career Services staff provides informational programs, mock interviews, one-on-one counseling, networking opportunities, and an online job bank. It also hosts on-campus interviews for interested employers and works extensively with employers to market Hamline law students. A comprehensive overview of the recent graduate employment statistics is available through the Career Services web page.