Foundations of Practice

The Foundations of Practice is a professional development award-winning program for first-year law students to help them identify their professional goals and build critical professional skills sought by legal employers and clients. It was the 2018 recipient of the E. Smythe Gambrell Professionalism Award, a program of the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Professionalism. The program, which is centered on the Inns of Court Program, encourages students to take advantage of important resources to supplement their classroom education, including Inns of Court sessions, Writing Center workshops and one-on-one writing advice, Career Center workshops and individual counseling, health and wellness programs, cultural competency programs, and advice from practicing lawyers. Students who successfully complete the program requirements by the end of the first year of law school are awarded the Dean’s Recognition for Professional Development in recognition of their commitment to self-directed professional development.

The Foundations of Practice program is designed to guide our students’ professional formation by encouraging the transition from law student to competent and self-directed lawyer. The Program’s varied components help students to build the foundational competencies required for success and satisfaction in the legal profession. As students take increasing responsibility for their own professional development and become more self-directed in their learning, they are better equipped to acquire and develop the competencies they need to serve clients and the legal system.

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Co-Directors, Inns of Court and Foundations of Practice Programs

  • Todd Peterson, Professor of Law
  • Susan Fine, Interim Associate Dean for Professional Development and Career Strategy

Foundations of Practice