BOSTON – October 18, 2018 – New England Law | Boston, the only independent ABA-accredited law school in Massachusetts, today announced that it has been named a top law school in public interest and family law by preLaw Magazine. The school was honored in the September and October issues of the magazine, earning an A- and A in public interest and family law, respectively. PreLaw Magazine determines the letter grades based on course offerings, concentrations and certificates, number of faculty members focused on the area, and student access to clinics and externships. New England Law was the only Massachusetts law school to receive an A grade in the family law division.
New England Law offers concentrations in immigration and intellectual property law, in addition to seventeen “pathways,” including public interest and family law. The Pathways to the Profession Program® allows New England Law students to explore various legal career paths that interest them. Students personalize their law school plan, choosing courses and experiential learning opportunities that give them the skills and expertise they need to practice. The opportunities available for students who choose pathways in public interest and family law are particularly substantial.
Public Interest Law
The Public Interest Law Pathway, led by Professor Russell Engler, includes twenty-six course offerings and encourages participation in the Public Interest Law Seminar and Clinic. During this one-semester program, students can spend up to fifteen hours per week in the field. Placements include the New England Law Clinical Law Office, as well as off-site placements such as Greater Boston Legal Services (GBLS), where students handle civil cases. The seminar portion focuses on issues such as poverty, race, and access to justice.
“Interning for GBLS was everything I imagined being an attorney would be,” said Irene Chan ’17. “It was extremely rewarding to represent indigent tenants who were bullied, unjustly evicted, and denied due process. We worked closely with them and did our best to advocate for fair and just outcomes.”
In addition to GBLS, New England Law students have worked directly alongside lawyers and judges at the Merced Public Defenders’ Office in California; the Bronx County Family Court in New York; and Casa Myrna Inc., a domestic violence organization in Boston. Additionally, many students volunteer with the CORI Initiative, a component of the Criminal Justice Project, which connects New England Law students with qualified clients to help them through the process of sealing criminal records that are preventing them from moving forward with their lives.
The Family Law Pathway at New England Law includes seventeen course offerings, including family law; divorce practice; children and the law; domestic violence; law and the elderly; alternative dispute resolution; mediation; negotiation; wills, estates, and trusts; education and the law; and juvenile law. In addition to coursework, students have the opportunities to participate in the Family Law Clinic where they are placed in legal services offices, including New England Law's in-house clinic, and handle family law cases alongside active attorneys and judges.
Many students studying family law volunteer with the Women’s and Children’s Advocacy Project, co-directed by Professor Judith Greenberg and Adjunct Professor Wendy Murphy, a lawyer specializing in the representation of crime victims, women, and children. Alongside Professors Greenberg and Murphy, students work in various capacities, including participating in a court watch, and researching and identifying inappropriate language along with understanding the consequences of using such language. The Project’s recent activities have included researching and writing for amicus briefs in high-profile cases and contributing to legal information services dedicated to women’s legal issues.
For more information about the award-winning academic programs and experiential learning opportunities available at New England Law, please visit here.