Student Groups

From the Multi-Cultural Law Students Association to the Federalist Society, from the Maritime Law Association to the Sports & Entertainment Law Society, there are student groups for every legal, political and personal interest.

Alliance (LGBT)

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Alliance logo

The Alliance was created to serve the academic, professional, and extracurricular interests of the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community, along with their friends and other individuals interested in legal issues concerning the LGBT community. The organization presents educational programs and speakers on sexual orientation and the law, develops contacts with local and national LGBT organizations, and works towards eradicating discrimination based on sexual orientation.

American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Student Chapter

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"The American Civil Liberties Union is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to upholding and protecting the rights and freedoms guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights.” Our ACLU student chapter offers students the opportunity to not only learn about the litigation and legislation surrounding the efforts to protect civil liberties, but to actively participate in such in several ways, such as our permanent seat on the Rhode Island ACLU’s executive board, working directly with an ACLU attorney, and conducting policy analysis.

American Constitution Society (ACS)

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The ACS is a national network for law students, lawyers and legal professionals who want to ensure that fundamental principles of human dignity, individual rights and liberties, genuine equality, and access to justice enjoy their rightful, central place in American law. In other words, if you want to integrate social justice concerns into your legal career and your networking, you have found your group.

Asian Pacific American Law Student Association (APALSA)

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The Asian Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA) works to bring greater awareness and a deeper understanding of the political, cultural, historic, and legal roles of Asian Americans. APALSA strives to offer social, professional, and educational opportunities for its members and the entire Law School community.

Association for Public Interest Law

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APIL is a non-partisan student organization whose goal is to raise awareness of legal issues affecting the broader public, especially those segments of the public that may face barriers to justice. APIL facilitates opportunities for students to become involved with the public interest legal community through events such as the Equal Justice Works Conference and Career Fair in October, the Rebellious Lawyering Conference in February, the NYU Public Interest Legal Career Fair in February, the Cover Public Interest Retreat in March, as well as alternative spring break service opportunities. APIL coordinates with other student groups and the Feinstein Institute for Legal Service to provide and promote public interest related events throughout the year and to raise money for public interest summer internship stipends through the annual Public Interest Auction. APIL strives to bring attention to and actively support student-driven and community-based initiatives, such as the Haiti relief effort and the response to the Rhode Island floods of 2010.

Our organization works with the Feinstein Center for Pro Bono and Experiential Education at Roger Williams and law students to further public interest law in Rhode Island and the New England area. We will continue to work as advocates for those in need of assistance.

Black Law Students Association

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NBLSA logo

The RWU Chapter of the National Black Law Students Association is formed to articulate and promote the needs and goals of Black law students and effectuate change in the legal community. An affiliate of the National Black Law Students’ Association, the RWU Chapter focuses on sensitizing the legal establishment to the needs of the Black community, promoting the professional needs of Black law students, and assisting in the recruitment, retention, and placement of students of color. BLSA strives to foster and encourage professional competence within our membership through various academic and career workshops, sponsoring special programs such as our annual Winter Solstice and Black History and Community Service events. This organization is open to all law students regardless of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, who support and promote the career development of all underrepresented students in the field of law. For additional information visit www.nblsa.org or email us at rwu@nblsa.org.

Christian Law Student Society

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The Christian Law Student Society merges religious beliefs with the law and provides opportunity for discussion regarding the law, morality and how the two interact.

Criminal Law Society

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The Criminal Law Society (CLS) strives to foster communication and understanding among students about issues in criminal law. Each member is committed to increasing the presence of criminal law at RWU and creating a forum for students to contribute to criminal law scholarship, practice, and policymaking.

Its goal is to provide direction and support for students who may be interested in any of the vast fields that criminal law entails. It does this through speakers, panels, job and networking opportunities, ride-alongs with the police department, and field trips to prisons and trials throughout Rhode Island.

The CLS also collaborates with the Justice Studies program on events to bring practitioners, academics, judges, and policymakers to campus. Additionally, members of the CLS are dedicated to contributing to the well-being of society by performing service projects for the less fortunate.

Elder Law Society

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The Elder Law Society is a non-partisan, student-run organization dedicated to promoting knowledge and awareness of elder law issues affecting students and their families, law professionals, and the public at large through educational programming and events at Roger Williams University School of Law. The Elder Law Society is committed to building a bridge between law students, the local community, and attorneys in the greater New England area for the purpose of professional development.

Employment and Labor Law Society (ELLS)

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The Employment and Labor Law Society (ELLS) is a student organization dedicated to promoting a forum for all students interested in employment and labor law issues. Employment and Labor Law Society’s purpose is a non-partisan, student-run organization with the goal of advancing different views, experiences and opportunities relating to the employment and labor law fields.

Environmental Law Society

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The Environmental Law Society (ELS) provides students with the opportunity to learn about and engage in discussion regarding environmental and natural resource law. ELS sponsors speakers, including attorneys, with diverse views and backgrounds on many environmental issues and their career experiences. ELS also proudly sponsors community events such as International Coastal Clean-Up Day. Additionally, ELS provides the opportunity for students to attend the annual National Environmental Law Societies conference.

Family Law Society (FLS)

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As our society’s definition of family continues to expand, so does the range of issues faced by attorneys specializing in family law. The objective of FLS is to bring awareness to current and emerging legal issues in the area of family law, to provide information to students on the various career possibilities in the field of family law, and to aid students in creating lasting professional contacts. FLS achieves these objectives by hosting a variety of speakers on emerging legal topics, by providing students access to alumni who have pursued careers in the area of family law, and by creating unique opportunities for students to observe legal practice in action.

Federalist Society

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The Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies is a group of conservatives and libertarians interested in the current state of the legal order. It is founded on the principles that the state exists to preserve freedom, that the separation of governmental powers is central to our Constitution, and that it is emphatically the province and duty of the judiciary to say what the law is, not what it should be.

Health Law Society (HLS)

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The Health Law Society (HLS) is a non-partisan, student-run organization dedicated to promoting knowledge and awareness of health law issues affecting students and their families, law professionals, and the public at large through educational programming and events at Roger Williams University School of Law. HLS is committed to building a bridge between law students, the local community, and attorneys in the greater New England area for the purpose of professional development.

Intellectual Property Law Association (IPLA)

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The Intellectual Property Law Association (IPLA) is designed for students interested in the fruits of mental labor commonly referred to as intellectual property.  Broadly, intellectual property mainly focuses on four areas: patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets.  Students interested in specializing in intellectual property law are strongly encouraged to join but otherwise, the IPLA is open for all students, regardless of their particular career path.  The IPLA recognizes that the legislature and the courts have a difficult time keeping up with technological innovations; as such, intellectual property law is one of the only ever-expanding areas of legal expertise.  Additionally, we strive to inform the student body that because of this expansion, it will be very likely that you will encounter issues down the road relating to intellectual property law.  Our goal is increase our campus’s interest and passion for intellectual property law to match the field’s growth by offering open meetings, guest speaking events, and updates on career opportunities directly and indirectly related to intellectual property law.

International Law Society

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The International Law Society promotes educational and social interaction among law students interested in the various frontiers of both public and private international law. With the world economy becoming increasingly globalized, the International Law Society recognizes the need to highlight that all areas of law—from admiralty to taxation—have universal connections. The International Law Society sponsors social events and hosts speakers that facilitate cultural exchange and academic discussion about legal issues on the international level. In general, this society hosts events with many other student organizations in the law school community to reflect how intertwined all areas of law are on a global scale. Annually, the International Law Society collects bars of soap and other toiletries to benefit the people of Haiti.

Jewish Law Students Association (JLSA)

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The Jewish Law Students Association is a student group created for the purpose of providing both Jewish and interested non-Jewish law students the opportunity to celebrate holidays together throughout year, learn more about the Jewish culture and its ties to contemporary law, as well as to provide the aforementioned students with a forum to meet others and have a good time.

Latino Law Students Association (LLSA)

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The Latino Law Students Association (LLSA) strives to provide academic and social support for all of its Latino and non-Latino members. It does so through various activities and programs. LLSA is committed to increasing the number of Latino Americans in the Law School and in the legal profession, as well as alerting the entire law school community to issues that concern Latinos and other minority groups. LLSA is a committee of the Multicultural Law Students Association.

Law Student Division of The American Bar Association

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The ABA is the leading voice of the legal profession in the nation. With more than 413,000 members  (including 51,000+ law student members), the ABA’s activities include providing law school accreditation, continuing legal education for lawyers, programs to assist lawyers and judges in their work, guidelines on ethics and rules of professional conducts, and initiatives to improve the legal system for the public. The ABA also develops programs and publications specifically targeted to help law students succeed in their studies and in building their legal careers. Membership is easy; simply call the ABA Service Center at 800.285.2221 or sign up on line by logging onto www.abanet.org.

Maritime Law Society (MLS)

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The Maritime Law Society offers students opportunities to learn about current issues in admiralty and maritime law. MLS sponsors events (speakers, panels, and discussions) that allow students to learn from and network with maritime industry professionals. MLS invites all students to join us and explore an interesting and unique field of law.

Military and Veteran’s Law Association

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The Military and Veteran’s Law Association (MVLA) is a non-partisan, student-run organization dedicated to raising visibility of and promoting knowledge and awareness of military and veteran law issues affecting students, law professionals, veterans and members of America’s Armed Forces through educational programming and events at Roger Williams University School of Law.  MVLA is committed to building a bridge between law students, veterans, JAG personnel, the local community, those seeking to pursue careers in the military or, and attorneys in the greater New England area for the purpose of professional development.

Multi-Cultural Law Students Association (MCLSA)

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MCLSA is a student-run organization open to all students interested in multicultural and diversity issues. MCLSA serves as a formal voice for law students of color, offers a supportive academic and social environment for its members, and provides opportunities for its members to work closely with practicing attorneys and other legal professionals. Through the MCLSA members can gain access to several regional and national minority law student organizations.

Muslim Law Student Association (MLSA)

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The Muslim Law Student Association is dedicated to exploring Islamic legal issues and bringing a greater understanding of Islam and the legal profession to all members of Roger Williams School of Law and the community.  MLSA’s purpose is to provide for the religious and cultural needs of Muslim law students and promote the participation of all students through a diverse program of activities. The organization also strives to articulate and promote the professional needs and goals of Muslim Law Students, foster and encourage professional competence, focus upon the relationship of the Muslim Law Student Association with a focus on creating a greater connection to other religious, political and social groups, awareness and commitment to the needs of the Muslim community, as well as to influence the legal community to bring out meaningful change to meet the needs of the entire community.

National Lawyers Guild

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The RWU Law Student Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild is an association dedicated to the support and defense of economic and social justice, and to progressive change rather than the acceptance of the status quo. We seek to educate ourselves and the community about issues affecting economic and social justice, provide law students with pro bono opportunities in support of these goals, and increase the awareness of the RWU community on issues surrounding economic and social justice. We seek to unite with the lawyers, law students, legal workers and jailhouse lawyers of America in an organization which shall function as an effective political and social force in the service of the people, to the end that economic and social justice are basic human rights and must be protected and expanded.

For more information, please visit www.nlg.orgwww.nlgri.org, or www.nlgmass.org or email us at rwunlg@gmail.com.

Negotiation and Mediation Association (Society for Alternative Dispute Resolution)

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The Negotiation and Mediation Association (Society for Alternative Dispute Resolution) exists to emphasize alternatives to trial, help you develop a critical lawyering skill, and promote the Competition Team’s endeavors through several fun and educational gatherings. Being a part of the Association will minimally: (1) hone your innate skills during our Negotiation Workout, (2) reveal various aspects of alternative dispute resolution, especially through our Mediation Review, and (3) expose you to the Competition Team. Are you ready to help us rise to new heights?

Older Wiser Law Students Society (OWLS)

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Are OWLS really “older and wiser?” Come find out! OWLS is open to all law students of all ages and backgrounds and is dedicated to supporting the non-traditional student who is pursuing law as a second career, after a lapse in an academic environment, and/or is juggling the challenges of law school with their spouse, children, and/or other loved ones. OWLS promotes involvement in school and community events and hosts relevant forums as well as wholesome and mature events for law students, their families, and loved ones.

Phi Alpha Delta (PAD)

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Phi Alpha Delta is a student legal fraternity group dedicated to student support and career advancement. The organization provides unique opportunities for introductions to members of the bench and bar. This legal fraternity is one of the largest active networks of attorneys in the world.

Quahogs

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The RWU Quahogs is a co-educational softball team that provides students with a much needed break from the stresses of law school. The Quahogs compete in roughly three tournaments a year including a national tournament at the University of Virginia during the spring semester. Carry on the successful tradition of the Quahogs and join the team for the new season!

Sports & Entertainment Law Society

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Sport and Entertainment Law Society (SPENT) is an organization for students with an interest in Sport or Entertainment Law. Our goals include keeping members up-to-date with current sport and entertainment industry happenings, meeting and learning from industry professionals, and sharing a common interest with other RWUSOL students.

SPENT hosts Student/Faculty Jeopardy as well as an annual Halloween party. In addition, expect SPENT to host speakers and events related to the sport or entertainment industry. For example, SPENT hosted a Yankees-Red Sox rivalry event in April 2009. Learning about the industry and keeping up with industry happenings are all a part of SPENT.

If you have an interest in sports or entertainment and how the law might play into these thriving industries, then SPENT is for you!

Student Animal Legal Defense Fund

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The SALDF is a student chapter that is affiliated with the Animal Legal Defense Fund and shares its mission to protect the lives of animals through the legal system. Founded in 1979 by attorneys active in shaping the emerging field of animal law, ALDF has blazed the trail for stronger enforcement of anti-cruelty laws and more humane treatment of animals.

The primary goals of our student chapter are to raise funds and further support the local Bristol Animal Shelter. To accomplish these goals, we hope to host a fundraiser in the fall and are working on the possibility of hosting a charity fashion show in the spring, the proceeds of which go directly to the animal shelter.

Student RI Association for Justice (SRIAJ)

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The mission of the SRIAJ is to connect students with local trial attorneys and get them real world experiences and connections in the legal community from their first day at law school. As a member of the SRIAJ you will be assigned your own personal mentor, a Rhode Island trial attorney. Last year our members were invited to assist in their mentors’ offices, observe them at trial, and attend professional networking events. We are the student chapter of the RIAJ, a group composed of Rhode Island’s top trial attorneys. This association seeks to further opportunities for those law students who want a career in the courtroom and to build strong connections with the local legal community.

Tax and Business Law Society

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The objective of the Tax Law and Business Society is to promote and encourage the study of taxation and business topics, and to develop strong relationships and network opportunities with business leaders and tax law professionals.

In the upcoming year, the organization will have a variety of events to provide networking opportunities to with professionals in the diverse fields of business and tax law.

Additionally, we are working towards securing guest speakers and will be presenting workshops for students. In the fall, we will be having one for students about the basics of financial statements, focusing on income statements and balance sheet, and how to read them which will should help those students particularly in classes like Business Organizations.

Our primary service activity is the annual VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program where students are certified to help at the local VITA centers with income tax preparation. This program is approved by the Feinstein Institute to count towards a student’s required public service requirement. Information typically is sent out in November for sign ups for students interested in participating in this program.

Women's Law Society

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The purpose of the Women's Law Society is to reinforce and expand the representation of women at both Roger Williams University School of Law and in the legal profession through scholarship, events, and networking opportunities.

The WLS strives to improve the experiences of women during law school and through to the legal profession. The society's goals are to form a supportive community which believes in the right of equality of women and men in scholastics, the legal profession, and beyond.

The WLS events include:

  • Women in Robes
  • An annual dinner saluting the achievement of women judges and justices in the Rhode Island Judiciary.
  • Making Strides Against Breast Cancer
  • During the month of October the RWUSOL Women's Law Society participates in this breast cancer awareness walk in Providence, Rhode Island.
  • Dress for Success Fundraiser
  • During the Spring term we hold a fundraiser for this Providence area charity which provides women of need with appropriate business attire for job interviews.
  • Spring Roundtables
  • Also during the spring we sponser roundtables with various local women attorneys so students may ask questions about the legal profession including, how to raise a family, whether public or corporate law is a better fit, and how litigation works in the real world. The WLS works closely with the Rhode Island Women's Bar Association for these roundtables as well as other events.

Interesting Facts:

  • We seek guidance through Ms. JD, a national organization with the same goals and mission as our own.
  • We raised around $2,000 for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer and over $500 for Dress for Success during the 2008-2009 school year.
  • The WLS has began a mentorship program with the Rhode Island Women's Bar Association which resulted in many individual mentor/mentee relationships.
  • Ms. JD awarded summer public interest scholarships during the Summer of 2009 and one of our own RWUSOL Women's Law Society members received this honor.
Close Course Type Descriptions

Course Types

We have classified RWU Law classes under the following headers. One of the following course types will be attached to each course which will allow students to narrow down their search while looking for classes.

Core Course

Students in the first and second year are required to take classes covering the following aspects of the law—contracts, torts, property, criminal law, civil procedure, and constitutional law, evidence, and professional responsibility.  Along with these aspects, the core curriculum will develop legal reasoning skills.

Elective

After finishing the core curriculum the remaining coursework toward the degree is completed through upper level elective courses.  Students can choose courses that peak their interests or courses that go along with the track they are following.

Seminar

Seminars are classes where teachers and small groups of students focus on a specific topic and the students complete a substantial research paper.

Clinics/Externships

Inhouse Clinics and Clinical Externships legal education is law school training in which students participate in client representation under the supervision of a practicing attorney or law professor.  RWU Law's Clinical Programs offer unique and effective learning opportunities and the opportunity for practical experience while still in law school.