Join Our Community of Aspiring Lawyers

Our On-Campus J.D. Program at Syracuse Law gives you the core knowledge, aptitude, and skills to build your career as a profession-ready lawyer in a broad spectrum of fields.

An innovative approach to legal education, our vast and connected alumni network, and our focus on collaboration will help you create the foundation for a lifetime of success.

Curricular Programs

Starting in your second year, Syracuse Law offers curricular programs for students to explore specialized areas of the law. Experiential learning opportunities in your speciality, including clinic work, internships, or externships, bridge the gap between theory and practice, preparing you for the realities and challenges of real-world legal scenarios.

For each curricular program, you will take a minimum number of credits in the specialized area, including classes that require a written work product, an experiential learning experience, an interdisciplinary course, and a capstone project.

Learn about one or more of the following diverse fields of law, tailoring your education to align with your personal interests and career aspirations.

Advanced Property Studies Curricular Programs prepares students for work in a number of areas of property law including real, personal, intellectual, intangible, and cultural property. The focus is on private market transactions and the public regulation thereof. Courses explore the nature of property rights and the limits of government regulation when it comes to the abridgment of these rights.

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Syracuse students have many opportunities to develop and hone their advocacy skills-not only in class but also in intra- and inter-collegiate competitions. While many competitions require students to be physically present where the competition is held, Syracuse is building upon its online education expertise by developing virtual competition opportunities. These opportunities allow students around the world to participate in select competitions.

Syracuse and its alumni have deep pride in our student advocates, who routinely win major awards regional, national, and international tournaments.

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The Communications Law Curricular Program offers a foundation for understanding various areas of the communications industry, including broadcasting and the Internet, as well as cable, mobile, satellite, and broadband and landline services. The program requires students to take a concentration in courses relating to the structure and regulation of the communications industry. The program is designed to prepare students for roles as policymakers, advocates, and analysts in traditional and new media and other communications industries such as those offering wireline and wireless services.

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The Corporate Counsel Curricular Program gives students the skills they need to step into corporate law positions upon graduation, whether on the legal staff of a company or with a firm that represents corporations. Students take courses in economics or finance, labor and employment law, intellectual property, business associations, and business law electives. All students completing the program take General Counsel, a course that simulates the practice of in-house staff.

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The Disability Law and Policy Curricular Program provides students the opportunity to acquire the background and skills required to meet the growing need for lawyers knowledgeable about disability laws and policies. Students in this Program may enroll in our Disability Rights Clinic and in such courses as disability law, international human rights and comparative disability law, family law, estate planning, education law, and labor and employment law as well as at least one disability-related course outside of the College of Law. The goal of the program is to prepare students to work in federal and state government offices, private firms, and public interest, civil and human rights organizations which focus on disability law and the related fields of education and special education, employment, family and children’s rights, civil rights, and international human rights law.

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The Entertainment and Sports Law Curricular Program is designed to introduce students with varied interests in fields such as sports, theatre, publishing, film, and music to the legal framework for these industries. The program encourages students to explore opportunities within the College of Law, the broader University, and in practice settings. Participation in the program permits students to demonstrate both their interest and their expertise in these fields in the search for internships and employment.

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Students in the Estate Planning Curricular Program will acquire the practical skills required to meet the growing need for estate planning, estate and trust administration, wealth transfer taxes and charitable giving professionals. Students will develop both a firm theoretical foundation in the subject and a thorough understanding of how to apply what they learn by participating in the rigorous Estate Planning capstone course. The program is designed to prepare students to work in a variety of settings, including law and accounting firms, wealth management, insurance, and trust companies, and fund-raising divisions of universities and other non-profit organizations.

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The Family Law and Social Policy Curricular Program is available to those students who are interested in developing expertise to comprehensively address the legal needs of families and children. This program focuses on the interrelationship between the different areas of law that affect individuals within a familial context and the different systems that may be implicated. The requirements for this curricular program are specifically designed to allow law students to explore their particular interests utilizing a multi-faceted approach which is necessary to provide holistic legal representation in the dynamic areas of family law, wills and trusts, domestic violence, elder law, and other legal issues affecting children and families.

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The Global Law and Practice Curricular Program offers students the opportunity to prepare for careers in fields ranging from public and private international law, transnational law, and international relations to immigration law. Students in the program may focus their interests on areas such as international law, human rights, international trade and business. Graduates have gone on to practice in government agencies, international tribunals, multinational corporations, international law firms, banks, and non-governmental organizations.

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The Institute for the Judiciary, Politics and the Media (IJPM) Curricular Program was created with the assistance of funds from the John Ben Snow Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation. The program requires students to take a concentration in courses relating to the study of how judicial institutions, public policy-making, and media coverage affect and are affected by one another. The courses are supplemented by an Independent Study with the IJPM Director. Together the courses and Independent Study promote a holistic understanding of the complex interactions between the courts, the media, and the political process. The goal is to better prepare students for roles as advocates, policy-makers, judges, judicial administrators and information officers, and legal analysts.

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The Technology Commercialization Law Program (TCLP) offers a Curricular Program in Technology Commercialization Law Studies for students interested in demonstrating in-depth scholarship in the technical, legal, and business aspects involved in bringing new technologies to market. In addition to focused classroom study, students in the TCLP work on research projects for real technologies on behalf of universities, federal research laboratories technology development organizations, and established companies and startups. The program provides a solid foundation for careers in law firms, corporations, government agencies, tech transfer offices, and consulting and investing firms.

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Orange Flex

Jumpstart your career by taking your last year of law school remotely, while working in a city of your choice. Combining online classes taken through our Online J.D. Program (JDinteractive) with an externship, Orange Flex gives you the opportunity to make connections and strengthen your professional networks in the community where you wish to work.

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Residency Experiences for Global Learning

Experience the world of law through unrivaled, condensed residential courses that offer you valuable insights from alumni practitioners and foremost authorities across various legal subjects.

On-Campus J.D. students may choose to participate in upper-division “advanced legal topic” residency courses alongside their peers in the online JDinteractive program.

Residency students will have the opportunity to learn in esteemed law firms around the country or work alongside top-tier practitioners in the Syracuse area. You’ll also embark on exploration trips to major corporations, courts, and agencies, spanning cities such as NYC, D.C., Charlotte, Denver, Los Angeles, London, Geneva, Rome, and Strasbourg. Residency courses are credit bearing for J.D. Residential students. They are about a week in length, scheduled for August, early January, March, and April.

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Learning Outcomes

As a On-Campus J.D. student, you will learn national and international legal doctrine, analysis of legal problems, statutory interpretation, legal writing and research, critical thinking and creative problem-solving, legal ethics, and practical application of the law.

Each of our graduates will:

  • Demonstrate competence in the courses that are required of all students.
  • Demonstrate competence in one or more specialized areas of U.S. or international law.
  • Demonstrate understanding of the theories, historical development, and application of U.S. law.
  • Demonstrate understanding of legal procedures and the basic structure of government.

  • Identify the key facts, issues, reasoning, holdings, assumptions, and policies that underlie judicial decisions and independently critique them.
  • Understand and apply principles of statutory interpretation.
  • Determine the applicable legal rules from multiple sources of law and seek to reconcile any competing principles.
  • When analyzing legal problems, graduates will identify relevant issues, apply governing law, anticipate contrary arguments, evaluate potential outcomes, and formulate coherent strategies.

  • Be professional in their interactions.
  • Advocate persuasively.
  • Write accurately, follow accepted rules of grammar and citation, and use appropriate tone and organization.

  • Find governing law and relevant secondary sources.
  • Identify relevant facts, ascertain methods for discovering those facts, and evaluate the facts obtained.

  • Propose solutions to problems that take into account applicable law, client interests, changed circumstances, alternative options, and practical constraints.
  • Manage their time to meet deadlines.

  • Identify and resolve ethical issues consistent with the profession’s ethical standards.
  • Demonstrate commitment to the profession by helping to meet the legal needs of their communities and by promoting the fair administration of justice.
  • Recognize differing perspectives in resolving legal issues.