Drake University Law School has been recognized as a Best Law School for Practical Training by The National Jurist. Schools are rated by the number of full-time students who take simulation courses, externships, clinics, or who participate in interschool skills competitions. Drake is one of only 86 law schools to make the list.
Practical training is not just a buzzword around Drake, it’s the reality of the student experience.
Beginning with the First-Year Trial Practicum, where all first-year classes shift to a campus courtroom for a week to enable students to view an actual state or federal trial, Drake offers students the opportunity to apply what they’ve been learning in their first-year courses. The trial practicum dissects every phase of a trial, from jury selection to jury verdict, incorporating small group discussions, lectures, practice panels and debriefings with attorneys, judge, and jurors.
Through coursework, outstanding academic centers, the legal clinic, and extracurricular activities, Drake Law students get to do it all: serve as legislative interns, write and pass bills through the Iowa House and Senate, try (and win) felony jury trials, develop and present plans to the Des Moines City Council regarding the law and policy of urban planning, compete on national championship moot court and mock trial teams, and more.
Every student has the option to participate in one of Drake Law’s outstanding clinics. Many required courses incorporate simulations into the curriculum of the course for optimal application of the material. In addition, Drake Law boasts over 25 student organizations and 13 competition teams.
“Drake did experiential learning before experiential learning was cool,” said Bob Rigg, professor and director of the criminal defense program.
There is great value to students attending a law school that specializes in practical training. For one, it means students get to dive into many aspects of law in order to determine which direction to take their careers. And for many, it means they’re writing, arguing, mooting, and trying cases before they even take the bar.
“Everyday we fulfill our mission is to ensure our students have incredible practical training before they graduate, under the guidance and mentorship of experienced faculty who are challenging and encouraging them in every way,” said Drake Law Dean Ben Ullem.
To read more about Drake Law’s practical training, visit www.law.drake.edu. Read more about the Best Law Schools for Practical Training at www.nationaljurist.com/content/best-law-schools-practical-training-2015.