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University of Wyoming (College of Law)

One of the smallest law schools in the country, our alumni include many state and federal judges, governors, Senators and a former United States Ambassador to Ireland. Situated at 7,200 feet in the foothills of the Medicine Bow Range, we offer an unparalleled experience in academics and beauty.

The University of Wyoming has attracted outstanding lawyer-educators from throughout the country to its law faculty. They are a relatively young, vibrant group who take their teaching responsibilities seriously while maintaining strong reputations as scholars and public servants. Nearly half of the faculty members are women, a fitting representation for Wyoming, “The Equality State.”

Our law school’s favorable student-faculty ratio results in several tangible benefits, including small classes, more personalized instruction, and a diverse curriculum. Graduates leave the UW College of Law with a broad-based foundation for success, whether in a traditional law practice, in business, or in a nontraditional career path. Because of its location in the West, Wyoming has a comprehensive environmental and natural resources law curriculum. The College of Law also has three strong clinical programs. These provide students with hands-on experience in the law, including, for example, oral argument before the Wyoming Supreme Court.

An excellent faculty of approximately 16 full-time professors and several lecturers instructs a student body of about 225 carefully selected students. The limited size of the student body and the favorable student-faculty ratio create an atmosphere of friendliness and informality. Students enjoy a degree of access to faculty that students would rarely find at a larger institution. Small classes, more personalized instruction, and a diverse curriculum are strong traditions. Our alumni include not only leading private practitioners, but many state and federal judges, business executives, former governors, state and federal legislators, and a former United States Ambassador to Ireland.

The law school at Wyoming enjoys the active interest, involvement, and support of its alumni and other members of the state’s legal community. Members of the bench and bar regularly serve as adjunct faculty members and participate in other law school activities. Likewise, students often have significant opportunities to participate in activities of the bar. Among the more valuable of these opportunities is a mentor program in which first-year law students are paired with experienced attorneys. This relationship gives students a concrete connection to the practice of law, and an invaluable resource for academic, career, and other advice.

The law school occupies a modern, spacious building that is conducive to learning and studying. Our building contains three classrooms, a moot courtroom, two seminar rooms, the law library, faculty and staff offices, and offices for clinical programs and student organizations. The classrooms have a semi-circular amphitheater design, providing excellent acoustical and visual qualities. State-of-the-art projection systems in the classrooms allow instructors to utilize multi-media and Internet demonstrations in classroom instruction. Two of the classrooms have been recently remodeled, with significant technological enhancements. The student lounge and informal seating areas throughout the building provide comfortable facilities for study, conversation, and relaxation. Adjoining the student lounge is a locker room containing an individual locker for each student. Offices and work areas are provided for student activities. A computer lab and wireless Internet system are available for student use. A three-story law library offers more space per student than nearly every other law school library in the country. Students can choose from a variety of study areas - open carrels, closed carrels, tables, lounge areas, and small group conference rooms. The law library has an exceptional staff dedicated to providing friendly, professional service.

Good law students, like good lawyers, are well-rounded individuals who appreciate and enjoy life outside the law. You will work very hard in law school, but you will also need to rejuvenate your mind and body from time to time. We believe that Wyoming offers unparalleled opportunities in this regard. At 7,200 feet, the UW College of Law is the highest law school in the land. Within sight of the law building are the foothills of the Laramie Range five miles to the east and the majestic Snowy Range 30 miles to the west. Students have easy access to some of the finest outdoor recreation activities in the country, including superb hiking, skiing (both downhill and cross-country), mountain biking, rock climbing, camping, snowmobiling, hunting, and fishing.

Laramie is a friendly, unpretentious community of 30,000. It has no mall; instead, its historic downtown has retained its character with a lively array of unique shops, restaurants, and other businesses. Laramie also combines its small-town atmosphere with the energy and excitement of a major university. UW, with 11,500 students, has a remarkably active cultural activities program, often playing host to world-class performers. Serious Division I athletic competition is also a staple. And for those who yearn occasionally for the bright lights of a big city, Denver is only two hours to the south.

The primary mission of the College of Law is to provide a high quality legal education to its students. We also work to serve the legal profession and the public, and to enhance our own professional competence and development, through the production of high-quality legal scholarship. We also provide law-related educational and other services to the Bar, the University community and the general public.

The University of Wyoming College of Law has been an American Bar Association (ABA) approved law school since 1923. The Standards for Approval of Law Schools of the American Bar Association are founded primarily on the fact that law schools are the gateway to the legal profession. They are minimum requirements designed, developed, and implemented for the purpose of advancing the basic goal of providing a sound program of legal education. The graduates of approved law schools can become members of the bar in all United States jurisdictions, representing all members of the public in important interests. Therefore, an approved law school must provide an opportunity for its students to study in a diverse educational environment, and in order to protect the interests of the public, law students, and the profession, it must provide an educational program.

The College of Law offers five clinical programs: Defender Aid, Legal Services, Associated Students of the University of Wyoming, Domestic Violence, and Prosecution Assistance. The clinical programs operate pursuant to Wyoming Supreme Court rules that permit third-year law students to practice law under the supervision of a UW law professor or Wyoming Bar member. Each clinical program is designed to expose students to a wide range of real experience in the practice of law. The programs are available during the academic year to third-year students and during the summer between the students’ second and third years of law school. Students receive three credit hours per semester, graded Satisfactory-Unsatisfactory, and are required to devote a minimum of 150 hours to the program. Enrollment in the clinical programs may be limited in the interest of affording students maximum educational benefit. However, every effort is made to accommodate each student who desires the benefits of clinical experience.

A full-time, tenure-track faculty member who has had substantial experience in law practice directly supervises each clinical program. There are no adjunct or staff members between the faculty supervisors and student interns. A student director is appointed for each program to help the faculty supervisor administer the program.

The caseload of each clinic consists solely of actual cases. The Wyoming student practice rule allows student interns to make court appearances with the consent of the client. There is no simulation. The faculty supervisor is professionally responsible for the students in the program. Therefore, particular emphasis is placed on professional responsibility to the client, the profession, and the community.

The response of the Wyoming judiciary to student interns has been enthusiastic, both on and off the bench, and in trial and appellate courts.

Students gain valuable trial experience by participating in criminal trials while assisting prosecuting attorneys. Some of the work entails legal research and preparation of legal memoranda, and writing motions, motion responses, jury instructions, and trial briefs for criminal cases in the trial courts. While trial work consists principally of misdemeanor cases in county courts and justice of the peace courts, students may have the opportunity to take part in felony trials in the district courts.

Prosecution Assistance students have the extraordinary opportunity to participate in criminal appeals before the Wyoming Supreme Court. Cases include crimes of every sort, from larceny to homicide. Students prepare written briefs for submission to the court and then present oral argument to the Supreme Court. The Wyoming Supreme Court has actively encouraged participation of law students in its work, affording UW College of Law students experiences that are virtually unique in American legal education.

School name:University of WyomingCollege of Law
Address:Dept. 3035, 1000 E. University Ave.
Zip & city:WY 82071 Wyoming

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