Innovative and Outstanding Programs

The Association of American Law Schools shares examples of innovative and outstanding programs to foster ideas and showcase the diverse approaches to legal education at AALS Member Schools. Previous programs featured on this page can be found at the Innovative and Outstanding Programs Archive.

Updated July 2, 2019

American University Washington College of Law

AUWCL Launches New Initiative to Demystify Blockchain Technology

American University Washington College of Law has established a new initiative, the Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Legal Issues Group, which seeks to demystify blockchain technology and its applications, especially its use in Bitcoin and other forms of virtual currency. The new initiative will focus on fostering and increasing students’ career opportunities through a deeper practical understanding of these transformative technologies and the legal issues involved. The group intends to host speaker events and a discussion series featuring students, faculty, staff, regulators, coders, entrepreneurs, and investors.


Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law

Arizona Law Establishes New Course about Negotiations in the Sports Industry
Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law has developed a new course, Negotiations and Alternative Dispute Resolution in the Sports Industry, for master’s degree students in the Sports Law and Business Program. The course educates students on the theory, strategy, and practice of negotiating, but also helps them understand how these skills can be transferred into any workplace environment and their personal lives. The capstone project has students breaking into groups to negotiate a sports league’s next collective bargaining agreement, and then reporting back to their classmates on their outcomes and reactions.


Baylor University Law School

Baylor Law Develops Program That Teaches Lawyers How to Start Their Own Firm

Baylor University Law School has developed a new collaborative program, Legal Mapmaker, that addresses the access-to-justice problem for low- and middle-income Americans who have basic legal needs, but cannot afford the services of an attorney. Sponsored by every law school in the state of Texas, the program hosts a three-day series of workshops and seminars that instruct lawyers and recent law school graduates how to start their own law firm with overhead that is far less expensive than average. It aims to help entrepreneurial lawyers create firms that can offer legal services at affordable rates to traditionally undeserved communities.


Brigham Young University, J. Reuben Clark Law School

BYU Law Accepts Cyber Pioneer Award for Innovative Legal Design Lab

Brigham Young University, J. Reuben Clark Law School launched LawX, a legal design lab that aims to solve one legal challenge each fall semester using design thinking. Students identify and find the best solution to a social legal issue, whether it is a change in policy, process, or creation of a high-tech product. The first project from LawX was the development of SoloSuit – a free online tool to help Utah residents who cannot afford legal services to respond to debt collection lawsuits. LawX was the recipient of the 2018 Cyber Pioneer Award presented during the Utah iSymposium.


Case Western Reserve University School of Law

IP Law Clinic Working with Startup to Bring New Screening Technology to Market

Case Western Reserve University School of Law’s Intellectual Property Venture Clinic (IPVC) offers free legal and business expertise to student inventors and local startup companies as they enter the market. What makes the IPVC unique is the blend of business, intellectual property law, venture capitalization, and corporate counseling experience and training the clinic provides for students. IPVC has been working with a client, Reflexion, to bring new concussion screening technology to the market. Reflexion placed third in the national Startup Madness Competitions’ final round at South by Southwest Interactive in March 2017.


College of William and Mary, Marshall-Wythe School of Law

Innovative Summer International Internship Program Promotes Citizen Lawyers Abroad

William and Mary Law School’s Center for Comparative Legal Studies and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding has sponsored summer internships for 174 students in 47 countries. Since 2002, these internships enable law students to work in challenging environments around the world, contributing to post-conflict reconstruction efforts and strengthening the rule of law in countries struggling to recover from war, genocide and chaos.


Cleveland State University, Cleveland-Marshall College of Law

Cleveland-Marshall Law Launches Innovative Tech Lab In Partnership with TCDI

Cleveland-Marshall College of Law has launched the new Tech Lab in partnership with TCDI. Law students and local contract attorneys will use TCDI’s review platform, CVLynx, to deliver quality, time-saving legal services. Attorney project managers will oversee all work performed in the center and work under the direct supervision and guidance of outside or in-house counsel. The Tech Lab combines the Cleveland-Marshall Law’s existing strengths in technology with several new initiatives in cutting-edge areas ranging from blockchain to legal entrepreneurship.


Duke University School of Law

D.C. Summer Institute Offers Introduction to Law School and Legal Thinking

Duke University School of Law offers the D.C. Summer Institute on Law and Policy, which includes an introduction to law school for undergraduate students, recent college graduates, and working professionals considering law school or careers in the public sector. Courses introduce participants to legal reasoning, constitutional law, persuasive argument and legal analysis. In its sixth year, the program offered a novel course highlighting three prominent roles that lawyers hold in public service — a judge, a member of Congress, and an executive branch advisor.


Duke University School of Law

Center for Innovation Policy Works to Facilitate Improvement in Federal Law and Policy

The Center for Innovation Policy (CIP) at Duke University School of Law is an independent forum that brings together legal professionals, technology and business leaders, government officials, and academic experts to identify improvements to federal law and policy that will promote innovation and economic growth. In addition to fostering dialogue among stakeholders on a range of issues through its conferences, CIP engages in policymaking and scholarly debates through the publication of research articles, essays, and white papers.


Florida A&M University College of Law

Florida A&M Law Launches Post-Admit Program to Prepare Students for Success

Florida A&M University College of Law has developed the Summer Comprehensive Academic Legal Enhancement program, which is designed to assist entering students with their transition to law school. The voluntary two-week program offers students admitted into law school several key experiences, including enrichment activities, mentoring and the opportunity to jump-start their law school careers by acquiring the legal study skills necessary for success. Participants receive individualized feedback and in-depth support from faculty teaching in the program.


Fordham University School of Law

Fordham Law’s ADR Program Fosters International Understanding

The Alternative Dispute Resolution Program (ADR) at Fordham University School of Law provides students with unique opportunities to study the field of ADR. The program comprises extensive coursework, unique study-abroad opportunities, hands-on clinics, and distinguished dispute resolution student teams. After playing a role in the Northern Ireland peace process in the 1990s, Fordham Law launched a summer program in Belfast and Dublin, which continues to flourish and strengthen international relations. The ADR Program also sponsors the annual Fordham International Arbitration and Mediation Conference.


George Washington University Law School

Inns of Court and Foundations of Practice Program Honored with Smythe Gambrell Professionalism Award

The Inns of Court and Foundations of Practice programs at George Washington University School of Law has been nationally recognized as one of four recipients of the 2018 E. Smythe Gambrell Professionalism Award. Together, these programs reflect the law school’s culture of professional development and create a curated first-year student experience, with the Inns of Court as the centerpiece. The Gambrell Award judges and the ABA Standing Committee on Professionalism called the program an “exemplary and innovative approach to preparing young lawyers for a life in the law by exposing them to exceptional professional development resources and role models.”


Georgetown University Law Center

Street Law at Georgetown Law Celebrates 45 Years Teaching High Schoolers the Law

Georgetown University Law Center celebrated the 45th anniversary of Street Law with a summer celebration for alumni and guests, and the final round of the high school moot court competition on Monday, April 23. The program has trained more than 1,300 law students and served more than 35,000 Washington, D.C., high school students since 1972. The D.C. Council recently passed a ceremonial resolution acknowledging the work of the Street Law program.


Georgia State University College of Law

Center for Access to Justice’s Pro Bono Program Receives Outstanding University Program Award

Georgia State University honored the Center for Access to Justice’s Pro Bono Program with the 2018 Carl V. Patton President’s Award for Community Service and Social Justice: Outstanding University Program Award. Launched in August 2017, the Pro Bono Program connects students with volunteer opportunities to address unmet legal needs in low-income communities. In addition to regular volunteer opportunities, students can participate in the program’s Alternative Spring Break and spend a week learning about a substantive access to justice issue, such eviction defense or immigration detention, while engaging in pro bono service.


Georgia State University College of Law

Georgia State Law Adopts Data Analytics to Predict and Improve Student Success on Bar Exam

Georgia State University College of Law has developed a program using data analytics to identify early warning signs for bar exam failure and to target interventions for at-risk students, which will further improve the college’s bar passage rate. Georgia State Law will examine data such as the grades, classes taken and bar passage rates of its roughly 1,750 students enrolled during 2009 to 2017. After an analysis provides some insight, the college’s administration will consider curriculum changes as well as ways to tweak existing programs or develop new programs to facilitate better outcomes for students.


Hofstra University Maurice A. Deane School of Law

Hofstra Law Establishes First Medical-Legal Partnership with Northwell Health

Hofstra University Deane School of Law has partnered with Northwell Health to provide legal services for patients facing issues that contribute to poor health. The medical-legal partnership will focus on serving underserved children and adults whose well-being is affected by various social challenges and cannot afford legal intervention. The partnership will target community health disparities such as unsanitary housing conditions, denial of health benefits, domestic violence, access to healthy food and water, lack of consistent or affordable child care, and other factors that hinder good health.


Mitchell Hamline School of Law

New Initiative Aims to Expand Diversity in the Legal Profession

Mitchell Hamline School of Law has developed the Gateway to Legal Education program, which is designed to expand access to the legal profession to underserved communities. This new initiative offers free, online, law-related classes to students at colleges and universities that serve primarily minority and first-generation college students. In addition to taking classes, the students would have the option to attend a week-long summer program immersing them in the law school experience and in legal practice. Students would also be offered a free course preparing them to take the LSAT.


New York Law School

New Institute Prepares Law Students and Lawyers for Careers in Legal Tech Sector

New York Law School established the Business of Law Institute to create a pipeline of new lawyers to positions in the growing legal tech sector. The institute offers a mix of courses and programs: the development of the Business of Law Workshop and Seminar, which combines classroom instruction on timely regulations and technologies with hands-on work experience in a corporate legal department; a technology-centric Learning Lab where students can gain exposure to industry-leading legal tech tools; and guest lecture series on topics related to regulatory structures, business concepts, and industry-standard technologies.


Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law

New Course Teaches Students How to Use Technology to Identify Legal Problems

The Innovation Lab at Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law is a joint initiative of the Donald Pritzker Entrepreneurship Law Center and the Master of Science in Law program. Launched in the spring of 2017, law students use technology to address challenges in the legal system. The course also includes software development and intro-to-coding components. Law students divide into teams and identify legal problems that can benefit from innovation. Student solutions included a platform to help small business owners with legal questions, a kiosk to help pro se litigants file court documents, and a platform to help first-year transactional attorneys at law firms gain experience.


Penn State Law School

Penn State Law launches Legal-Tech Virtual Lab to Explore Emerging Technology

Penn State Law School has launched the Legal-Tech Virtual Lab in the spring of 2018 with an event in University Park with legal-tech company ROSS Intelligence. The event trained Penn State students on EVA, ROSS Intelligence’s new free, publicly accessible artificial-intelligence-powered legal research tool. Partnering with leading legal technology companies and interdisciplinary partners across Penn State, lab enables students to explore the legal issues surrounding emerging technology and develop innovative educational content using those technologies.


Roger Williams University School of Law

Innovative Training Program Helps New Lawyers Hone Skills in the Courtroom

The Litigation Academy at Roger Williams University School of Law is an innovative training program for lawyers set in a federal courtroom. Formed through a partnership between RWU Law and the Federal Bar Association, the program offers experience for new lawyers, while serving the court and public with higher-quality representation. The program, novel for its use of professional actors, combines lectures by lawyers with decades of experience with workshops in which actors pose as witnesses and the students get to practice their craft. They then get feedback from state and federal judges, seasoned practitioners, and the actors themselves in a supportive setting.


Seattle University School of Law

Incubator Program Trains Attorneys to Help Moderate-Income Clients

The Low Bono Incubator Program provides training, guidance and resources to attorneys who combine their legal skills with entrepreneurial business savvy to help moderate-income clients. As part of the program, attorneys receive mentorship and financial assistance for one year as they build small and solo practices. The Access to Justice Institute at Seattle University School of Law launched the program in 2014 to build the next generation of lawyers working to expand access to legal services to clients who cannot afford a full-price attorney but also do not qualify for indigent aid.


Stanford Law School

Law Clinic Offers Client-Centered Legal Representation for Low-Income Residents

The Community Law Clinic at Stanford Law School is a neighborhood legal services office and trial practice clinic. The clinic serves low-income residents of East Palo Alto and communities near Stanford in three major areas of direct service: eviction defense, expungement of criminal records, and assistance obtaining Social Security disability benefits. In addition to representing individual clients in their cases, the clinic docket includes ways to engage students with policy issues in those practice areas. Over the past few years, the clinic has been assisting community groups that are seeking to pass rent stabilization measures through citizen ballot initiatives.


University of California, Los Angeles School of Law

Law Fellows Program at UCLA Law Honored for Promoting Diversity in Legal Education

The Law Fellows Program UCLA Law School and its founding executive director, Leo Trujillo-Cox ’97, have received the Change Lawyer Award for 2018 in honor of their decades of work promoting increased diversity in the legal profession and championing underrepresented college students who are interested in pursuing careers in the law. The program introduces promising undergraduates from diverse backgrounds to the legal profession and the rigors of law school through a robust slate of lectures, mentorships and networking opportunities. Since its inception in 1997, the program has hosted more than 1,700 students from a wide array of undergraduate schools.


University of Colorado Law School

International Dispute Resolution Course Teaches Students to Think Globally

The International Dispute Resolution course at University of Colorado Law School blends traditional legal methods with diplomatic practices to give students a taste of the broader context in which legal dispute resolution takes place. Associate Professor Anna Spain Bradley introduces a weeklong simulation based on the U.S. Institute of Peace Simulation early in the semester. The exercise examines an active armed conflict with multiple parties which students must represent, and it underscores the importance and reality of the topics covered in the course.


University of Florida Levin College of Law

Semester in Practice Program Honored with Florida Bar’s Group Professionalism Award

University of Florida Law’s Semester in Practice program has earned the 2018 Group Professionalism Award from The Florida Bar’s Standing Committee on Professionalism. Since its inception in 2016, the program is designed to provide more experiential learning opportunities and to foster professional identity by exposing students to practicing attorneys, live clients and real legal matters. The program has also enhanced connections among its alumni through networking and mentoring opportunities.


University of Houston Law Center

Pre-Law Pipeline Program Honored by ABA for Accomplishments in Diversity

The University of Houston Law Center’s Pre-Law Pipeline Program has been honored by the American Bar Association’s Council for Diversity in the Education Pipeline for its efforts on behalf of diversity in the legal profession. The eight-week summer course is designed to increase diversity among law school applicants and to provide students from low-income, first-generation, and underrepresented backgrounds an opportunity to seriously consider a legal education. The program divides students into two tracks – LSAC’s Prelaw Undergraduate Scholars Program, which includes classroom instruction and internships with law firms and legal organizations in the area, and Scholar II, which includes a comprehensive LSAT-focused curriculum that prepares students for the law school application process.


University of Minnesota School of Law

Innovative Data Practicum Offers a Pathway into the Privacy Profession

The University of Minnesota School of Law has established an innovative Data Compliance Practicum to help students learn about privacy careers and gain a competitive advantage in entering this emerging field. The practicum is run under Professor William McGeveran, an early adopter in the data privacy area. The practicum provides opportunities to engage in experiential learning, hear from marquee players in the industry, attend networking events, and take the Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP) exam to gain a key credential.


University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law

UMKC Law Shares Innovative Courses with University of Missouri Law Students

The University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law has been awarded a University of Missouri system grant to support sharing its innovative courses with University of Missouri School of Law students. The first shared course is Wrongful Convictions, which is co-taught by UMKC Clinical Professor Lindsay Runnels in cooperation with the Midwest Innocence Project. This course is the prerequisite for the Wrongful Convictions Clinic. The second shared course is International Criminal Law, which is taught by UMKC Adjunct Professor William Worster. The distance education course will give students at both law schools the fundamentals of the system of international criminal law with the option of an international field experience at The Hague in the Netherlands.


University of Notre Dame Law School

Innovative Clinic Makes Mediation Services and Training More Widely Available

University of Notre Dame Law School’s Applied Mediation Clinic provides mediation services to individuals litigating civil matters such as child custody, parenting time, discrimination, landlord-tenant disputes, business dissolutions, and contract disputes. Serve as mediators in civil cases to help people arrive at mutually agreeable terms and avoid the cost and combat of the trial process. Professor Michael Jenuwine, who leads the Applied Mediation Clinic, has also helped build capacity for mediation in the South Bend region by leading courses that qualify attorneys and judges to be listed on the Indiana registry of mediators.


University of Pennsylvania Law School

Penn Law Students Support Minors Involved in the Criminal Justice System

University of Pennsylvania Law School’s Youth Advocacy Project in collaboration with the School of Social Policy & Practice work together to support minors who are prosecuted as adults in the criminal justice system. Working with the Youth Sentencing & Reentry Project, a direct service and policy advocacy organization, students help get cases transferred to the juvenile system, and continue to support the minor once they return to the community. Penn Law students in the Youth Advocacy Project share their experiences.


University of Richmond School of Law

Richmond Law’s D.C. Externship Program Offers Real-World Experience for Students

University of Richmond School of Law has established the D.C. Externship Program in 2015, which is designed to offer students the chance to gain practical experience in federal agencies and nonprofit organizations. Rising 3Ls accepted to the program live in Washington, D.C. for the semester and complete 500 hours of substantive legal work for academic credit. Students meet with Professor Stephen Allred once a week for a two-hour seminar to explore how their jobs are structured, discuss different management techniques, and hear from guest speakers.


University of Southern California Gould School of Law

USC Law Clinic Helps Life-Term Juvenile Offenders Receive a Second Chance

The Post-Conviction Justice Project at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law is a clinic that provides a second chance for inmates, primarily women and juvenile offenders, serving life sentences. Co-directed by Professors Michael Brennan and Heidi Rummel, students in the clinic gain experience in representing clients at parole hearings, conducting resentencing hearings for juveniles sentenced to life without parole, and litigating petitions for writs of habeas corpus in state and federal courts.


University of Wisconsin School of Law

Wisconsin Law Clinic Honored for Success in Unpaid Wages Case

The Neighborhood Law Clinic at the University of Wisconsin School of Law teaches students how to apply substantive and procedural employment and rental housing laws. The clinic, which is directed by Professor Mitch, received honorable mention for ‘Excellence in a Public Interest Case or Project’ from the Clinical Legal Education Association. The honor recognizes the clinic’s successful representation of a client who had not been paid for construction work. From the initial intake meeting to the trial, the case spanned four years and involved four different teams of students.


University of Wyoming College of Law

Defender Aid Program Flourishes in Shift to Trial Advocacy Cases

The Defender Aid Program at the University of Wyoming College of Law is a legal assistance clinic for individuals who have been accused or convicted of crimes and cannot afford counsel. The scope of the clinic’s work includes innocence claims made by Wyoming state prisoners (in collaboration with the Rocky Mountain Innocence Center), direct appeals, and other post-conviction relief. Over the years, the clinic has shifted from post-conviction relief cases to trial and appellate cases in state and federal courts. It has afforded the students new advocacy skills, great representation for the clients, and is saving the state money.


Wake Forest University School of Law

New Initiative Offers Physician Assistants a Competitive Edge in the Legal Marketplace

Wake Forest University has established the Emerging Leaders Program in Law, a partnership between the School of Law and the School of Medicine’s Physician Assistant (PA) Program. The cross-disciplinary initiative is designed to give PA leaders a competitive edge by helping them transform the delivery of health care while navigating a complex legal marketplace. Students in the program will earn a Master of Studies in Law and Master of Medical Science in PA Studies. The 36-month sequential degree program will begin accepting applications in April 2018.


Yale Law School

Clinic Provides Training for Local Refugee and Immigrant Food Entrepreneurs

Yale Law School’s Community Economic Development Clinic is a semester-long in-house clinic that provides transactional legal services to clients seeking to advance economic opportunity. Under the guidance of Professor Anika Singh, students assisted with the development of the curriculum for Sanctuary Kitchen’s Kitchen Incubator Program, a ten-week training program that is designed to provide resources, mentorship, and support to refugee and immigrant food entrepreneurs. Each session consisted of a presentation by the clinic team about the legal issues, including forming a food business and complying with food safety laws in Connecticut.


To submit a program for consideration for Innovative and Outstanding Programs, contact Jim Greif, Director of Communications at

Faculty Highlights

The Association of American Law Schools is proud to highlight the teaching, scholarship and innovation of law faculty at AALS Member Schools.

University of Kansas School of Law

University of Kansas Law Professor Part of Effort to Improve International Arbitration Cases

Christopher Drahozal, the John M. Rounds Professor of Law at the University of Kansas School of Law, is part of a project working to improve the information available to parties in international arbitration cases. Drahozal is a member of the board of directors of Arbitrator Intelligence, Inc., also known as AI, an entity established by Catherine Rogers, professor at Penn State Law. The project aims to promote fairness, transparency and accountability in the arbitrator selection process and increase the diversity of people deciding international arbitration cases. The centerpiece of AI’s innovation is the Arbitrator Intelligence Questionnaire (AIQ), which is designed to be administered to parties at the end of a case to collect information on how the arbitrator managed and decided the case.


Seton Hall University School of Law

Seton Hall Law Professor Uses Empathy as Innovative Teaching Method in the Classroom
Paula Franzese, the Peter Rodino Professor of Law at Seton Hall University School of Law, has published “The Power of Empathy in the Classroom” (2017) in the Seton Hall Law Review. Franzese argues that the key to effective teaching is empathy and shares with her readers the philosophical, cognitive and behavioral science underpinnings to her approach as well as specific tools she uses in her teaching method. Nationally renowned for her excellence in teaching, she was featured in What the Best Law Teachers Do (Harvard University Press, 2013) and recognized as an “Exemplary Teacher” by the American Association of Higher Education.


University of Southern California Gould School of Law

USC Gould Law Professor Directs Successful Legal Clinic for Small Businesses

Michael Chasalow, Clinical Law Professor at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law, directs the Small Business Clinic, which he founded in 2007 to provide law students with practice-ready transactional skills and offer free legal services to small businesses, entrepreneurs and nonprofit organizations. Ten years later, his innovation has evolved into one of the area’s most respected legal clinics. More than 85 USC law students have helped 750 clients draft and review contracts, set up corporations and LLCs, draft terms of use for websites and mobile apps and complete filings and corporate documents required when setting up a business. Before joining the USC faculty in 2001, Chasalow spent more than a decade providing business and legal consulting to new companies and working with private equity investments in high-tech startups.


University of California, Los Angeles School of Law

UCLA Law Professor Receives Lifetime Achievement Award in Labor Law

Katherine Stone, Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Distinguished Professor at UCLA School of Law, is the recipient of the 2017 Bob Hepple Award for Lifetime Achievement in Labor Law by the Labour Law Research Network (LLRN), an international group of labour law scholars. Stone is a leading expert in labor and employment law in the United States. Her books include From Widgets to Digits: Employment Regulation for the Changing Workplace (Cambridge University Press, 2004), which won the 2005 Michael Harrington Award from the American Political Science Association and was runner-up for the C. Wright Mills Award from the American Sociological Association. She has written several other books as well as numerous articles on topics including the changing nature of work, globalization and labor law, employment contracts and arbitration law.



Columbia Law School

Columbia Law Professor Receives Prestigious Bradley Prize for Innovative Scholarship

Philip Hamburger, the Maurice and Hilda Friedman Professor of Law at Columbia Law School, is a recipient of the 2017 Bradley Prize that honors innovative scholars and practitioners whose contributions of excellence are consistent with the mission of The Lynne and Harry Bradley Foundation. In his acceptance speech, Hamburger, who has been on the Columbia Law School faculty since 2006, expressed how meaningful it is to be honored as a scholar: “When the Bradley Foundation gives this award, it draws attention not merely to four scholars, but to our work and even more seriously, to the problems we study, and these problems are serious.” Hamburger’s areas of expertise are constitutional law, the First Amendment, administrative law, and legal history.


City University of New York School of Law

Professor Honored for Work to End Violence Against Women

CUNY School of Law Professor Julie Goldscheid is a recipient of the American Bar Association’s 20/20 Vision Award, honoring individuals who advance the work of the Violence Against Women Act and the Commission on Domestic & Sexual Violence. Professor Goldscheid is a nationally recognized expert whose decades of work on behalf of survivors of gender violence has included arguing before the Supreme Court, directing programs, and authoring numerous articles and other publications to advance survivors’ rights and gender equality.


University of Texas School of Law

Bankruptcy Law Expert Named to Texas Academy of Distinguished Teachers

Mechele Dickerson, the Arthur L. Moller Chair in Bankruptcy Law and Practice at the University of Texas School of Law, has been honored with the distinction of being named to the 2015 University of Texas Academy of Distinguished Teachers. She is a nationally renowned expert in bankruptcy law and consumer debt and the first law school faculty member to be honored with this distinction in 13 years.


Loyola University Chicago School of Law

Professor Recognized for Public Interest Advocacy

Loyola University Chicago School of Law Professor Mary Bird was named the 2015 recipient of the Chicago Bar Foundation’s Schrager Award for her work in public interest law and expanding the Loyola Street Law Program and other public interest initiatives. Professor Bird developed the Loyola Law Academy which allows underprivileged high school students to meet with law students and practitioners to learn more about careers in law.


Lewis & Clark Law School

Frasch Honored with Inaugural Excellence in Teaching Award by AALS Animal Law Section

Pamela Frasch, Assistant Dean, Animal Law Program and Executive Director, Center for Animal Law Studies at Lewis & Clark Law School has been announced as the inaugural recipient of the AALS Section on Animal Law award for teaching, scholarship, and service. Her expertise and compassion in animal law has inspired her students and fellow lawyers for the past 20 years.


Texas A&M University School of Law

Professor Honored by AALS Section on Minority Groups

The AALS Section on Minority Groups has selected Professor Sahar Aziz of Texas A&M University School of Law as the 2016 recipient of the Derrick A. Bell Award which honors junior faculty members who have made extraordinary contributions to legal education, the legal system, or social justice.


Boston College Law School

Panel Celebrates Professor’s New Book

Boston College Professor Mary Bilder’s book Madison’s Hand: Revising the Constitutional Convention was honored at a panel sponsored by the Cough center for the Study of Constitutional Democracy. The Bancroft Prize winning book reveals how James Madison extensively edited his notes from the 1787 Constitutional Convention and serves to make readers pause and think about if such a source can be considered impartial and accurate.


Widener University Delaware Law School

Professor Honored by Delaware State Bar Association for Role as Mentor

Widener University Delaware Law School Professor Dana Harrington Conner has been given the Delaware State Bar Association’s Distinguished Mentoring Award for her work mentoring and inspiring young Delaware lawyers. She also serves as the director of the Delaware Civil Law Clinic and co-director of the Family Health Law & Policy Institute at the school.


Temple University Beasley School of Law

Professor Receives Ruth Bader Ginsburg Lifetime Achievement Award from AALS Section

Professor Marina Angel of Temple University Beasley School of Law has been chosen as the recipient of the Ruth Bader Ginsburg Lifetime Achievement Award given by the AALS Section on Women in Legal Education, which honors individuals with a distinguished career of teaching, service, and scholarship for at least 20 years. Her impactful work focuses on women in legal education and the profession, violence against women, school shootings, and abused women who kill their abusers.


Georgia State University College of Law

Professor is Co-Author of Book Addressing Legal Education in a Changing World

Georgia State University College of Law clinical professor and director of experiential education Lisa Radtke Bliss co-edited Building on Best Practices: Transforming Legal Education in a Changing World with three others. They saw the book as a follow up to 2007’s Best Practices in Legal Education, and a way to help educators design a curriculum that will address changes in legal education and better prepare future lawyers.


University of Michigan Law School

Michigan Law Professor Receives Student Award for Excellence in Teaching

Professor Julian Davis Mortenson was named the recipient of The University of Michigan Law School’s Law’s L. Hart Wright Award for Teaching Excellence in 2015. Chosen by students, Mortenson has been praised for his passion for Constitutional Law and the individualized attention he gives to his students.


University of North Dakota School of Law

North Dakota Law Professor Patti Alleva does “What the Best Law Professors Do”

Harvard University Press’s publication “What the Best Law Teachers Do” has recognized Professor Patti Alleva, University of North Dakota School of Law, as one of the nation’s best law professors in the country. The four-year study undertook to identify the methods, strategies, and personal traits of professors whose students achieve exceptional learning. Professor Alleva has been recognized for her exceptional talents and contributions to teaching.


Stanford Law School

Bringing Excellence to Research and Teaching

Previously an Assistant United States Attorney, Professor Sklansky now uses his talents to benefit scholarship and students at Stanford Law School. He is the author of the acclaimed evidence casebook, “Evidence: Cases, Commentary and Problems,” and has contributed to better understanding of a variety of topics relating to criminal justice. A committed teacher, Professor Sklansky has won campus-wide distinguished teaching awards.


University of Missouri School of Law

Producing Successful, Professional Litigators

With more than 25 years practice as a successful litigator, Chuck Henson, University of Missouri School of Law, now works tirelessly to prepare students to become effective advocates. His goal is helping ensure that future trial lawyers are effective, but always professional, in advancing the interests of their clients.


College of William and Mary, Marshall-Wythe School of Law

Inspiring Students to be Lawyers and Good Citizens

William & Mary Law’s 2015 graduates honored Professor Adam Gershowitz with the Walter L. Williams, Jr. Memorial Teaching Award, given each year to recognize outstanding law teaching. He is noted for his expertise in criminal justice and valuable scholarship. His amicus brief on behalf of criminal procedures has been cited by the Supreme Court in Riley v. California, a case forbidding warrantless cell phone searches.


Gonzaga University School of Law

American Legal System 101 for Spokane Refugees

When Gonzaga Law Professor Megan Ballard organized a half-day workshop for refugees on American law and justice, 180 newcomers turned out to hear from a judge, police officer, public defenders and a prosecutor (several of them Gonzaga graduates). Law students served as volunteers. One refugee said he had never before felt comfortable in the presence of the police. Helping “reduce their fears was quite powerful,” said Ballard. A refugee aid organization now plans to make the workshop an annual event.


University of Denver Sturm College of Law

Experiential Learning Gives Denver Law Graduates an Edge

Denver Law professor Robert Corrada’s students learn labor law by forming a union and engaging in collective bargaining, and grapple in administrative law classes with how to regulate a real life Jurassic Park. Corrada’s innovative methods have helped make Denver Law an exemplar of experiential learning where students learn real world skills in simulations, legal clinics and externships as well as classrooms. He now holds the nation’s first legal “Modern Learning” chair.


University of Baltimore School of Law

Computer Mapping Provides Insights into Supreme Court Decisions and Dissent

Numerical scorecards on Supreme Court rulings abound, but University of Baltimore law professor Colin Starger has created a visual way to understand the high court’s decisions and dissents. His novel mapping software produces sophisticated, almost genealogical charts that plot relationships between majority, concurring and dissenting opinions extending over decades.


University of Utah Quinney College of Law

Role Model for Students and Advocate for Victims of Crime

When Paul Cassell teaches criminal law, procedure, and crime victims’ rights to University of Utah law students, he brings the perspective of one who has been a federal judge, prosecutor and advocate before the Supreme Court for child pornography victims. Once a clerk for Chief Justice Warren Burger, Cassell also has spoken out forcefully against cuts in funding for public defenders. His career stands as a model for those committed to the pursuit of justice.


St. Thomas University School of Law

Former Federal Prosecutor Leads Fight for Drug Sentencing Reforms

St. Thomas University law professor Mark Osler is among the country’s most successful advocates for criminal justice reform. He won the 2009 Supreme Court case that vindicated a judge’s refusal to impose a sentence for selling crack cocaine 100 times longer than for selling the drug in powder form. Author of Jesus on Death Row, he’s staged mock trials of Christ to dramatize opposition to the death penalty. Letters from prisoners inspired him to found the first law school clinic that works to obtain commutations or pardons for federal prisoners.


Loyola Law School, Los Angeles

Professor Alexandra Natapoff Delves Deep into Misdemeanors: “Petty is the New Big.”

With one sentence, Professor Alexandra Natapoff summarized the thesis of her newest scholarly pursuit: examining the often-underappreciated area of misdemeanor crimes and the consequences of their disproportionately low profile convictions as compared to felonies.


To submit a law teacher for consideration for Faculty Highlights, contact Jim Greif, Director of Communications at