Student Organizations

Going to law school is not just about classes and case books. It is meeting people, exploring different areas of law and getting involved in the legal community. With over 40 unique law student organizations, journals and teams from which to choose, USD School of Law offers ample opportunities to enrich your legal education, become a part of the USD law community, experience the legal "real world" and network with professionals working in your chosen field—all before graduation.

The Student Bar Association (SBA) is the umbrella organization for the student-run organizations at the University of San Diego School of Law. The various groups sponsor networking events, provide study assistance, represent group concerns, sponsor speaker programs, participate in and sponsor competitions, host social activities and promote community relations.

  • Advocates for Children and Education (ACE)

    ACE seeks to promote the welfare and education of children. Our main objective is to provide interested students, faculty, and staff with opportunities to connect with and positively impact children in the local community. We have volunteer opportunities available in the areas of juvenile delinquency, special education, and general mentoring and advocacy. We also provide resources and information about careers in child advocacy and education law.

    Crawford High School Academy of Law Visit

    We have partnered up with Law Student Affairs to help aspiring high school students, from Crawford Academy of the Law, get a small taste of what it is like to be a law school student. During this event, you will have the opportunity to discuss with the students what it is like to be a law student, what steps you took to get to law school, and what advice you wish you had while you were in high school. Additionally, you will help the students think like actual lawyers by putting on a small interactive presentation. Afterwards, lunch will be provided where you can mingle with the students. This is followed by a tour of the beautiful USD campus.

    Pro Bono hours are rewarded for your time which includes the training video that you are required to watch. This should amount to about 6-7 hours of pro bono hours for just one event! There is potential to earn even more pro bono hours if you help organize and plan the presentation for the students.

    If you are interested in being a part of the Crawford Academy event feel free to contact:

    Jacob Yang: jacobyang@sandiego.edu

    Education Liaison Program

    The Education Liaison Program collaborates with the San Diego Public Defender's Office to pair law students with juvenile offenders who need support in school. ACE members receive training in education law and work directly with students and parents to help children improve school performance. All cases are referred by public defenders. ACE advocates send periodic updates to the PD's office and, when appropriate, appear at juvenile court hearings to support parents and students. 

    If you are interested in being a part of the Education Liaison Program event feel free to contact:

    Curtis Davis: cpdavis@sandiego.edu 

    Education Rights Holder Program

    Local judges appoint ACE volunteers to hold education rights for students in foster care, until social workers find someone to permanently hold education rights. As temporary education rights holders, volunteers are the main educational advocates for their students and have the legal authority to make all education-related decisions. Usually, holders come in when parental rights have been terminated or when the court deems that the minor’s parents can't make decisions for their child anymore. The program works directly with the Public Defender’s office. Our case load requires us to review school documents, interview the minors, make plans for their success and to attend court hearings for the minor.

    If you are interested in being a part of the Education Rights Holder Program feel free to contact:

    Kathleen Gadalla: kgadalla@sandiego.edu

    SMART Program

    The SMART program occurs once each semester. The program is designed to help teens that have committed a misdemeanor offense and participate in the Youth Court Diversion Program to remove charges off their record. Law students volunteer to facilitate and work one-on-one with these teen offenders from the community. The program covers and focuses on various topics, including healthy relationships, the criminal justice system, seeking appropriate role models, decision-making, and setting goals. The goal of the program is to help prevent the teens in attendance from a cyclical life of crime through hands-on activities and group discussion.

    If you are interested in being a part of the SMART Program event feel free to contact:

    Morgan Small: msmall@sandiego.edu
    Mitzi Miranda: mmiranda@sandiego.edu

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    Web pages

  • American Bar Association (ABA)

    The ABA is the largest professional organization for practicing attorneys. With more than 400,000 attorneys nationwide, nearly half of all lawyers are members. The Law Student Division is a way for students to get involved while in school. Members meet other students and lawyers with common interests and learn about various career opportunities. All USD law students are encouraged to join the more than 36,000 students who currently belong to the ABA.

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  • American Constitution Society (ACS)

    The American Constitutional Society believes that law should be a force to improve the lives of all people. ACS works for positive change by shaping debate on vitally important legal and constitutional issues through development and promotion of high-impact ideas to opinion leaders and the media by building networks of lawyers, law students, judges, and policymakers dedicated to those ideas.

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    Web pages

    ACS National Organization Website

  • Appellate Moot Court

    The Appellate Moot Court Board is dedicated to fostering the development of appellate advocacy skills among our students. Members of the board receive training from professors and attorneys experienced in legal writing and appellate argument. The Moot Court Board hosts two intramural competitions each year, the Alumni Moot Court Tournament and the Paul A. McLennon, Sr., Honors Moot Court Competition. These competitions are open to all second- and third-year USD law students. The National Criminal Procedure Competition attracts teams from across the United States to compete in a rigorous tournament judged by leading criminal law experts and judicial officers in San Diego. Members of the Executive Board are also selected to compete in intercollegiate national tournaments. Competing members can receive academic credit. Please visit the Appellate Moot Court Board website for more information about the program. 

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    Web pages

    Appellate Moot Court Board Website

  • Asian Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA)

    APALSA services as an academic, social, and professional resource for law students. Our goal is to expand our social and professional network and strengthen our ties with the Asian-American legal community in San Diego. We work to promote a greater understanding of the diverse culture and rich history of our students.

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    Web pages

    APALSA Facebook Page

  • Black Law Students Association (BLSA)

    In addition to promoting the purpose of the National Black Law Student Association, the purpose of USD BLSA is to utilize the resources of USD School of Law and the legal community to articulate and promote the educational, professional, political, and social needs of the black law students at USD; facilitate discourse and professionalism among all law students; and instill a greater sense of commitment to the needs of the black community.

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    Web pages

    USD BLSA Website

  • Business Law Society (BLS)

    Our mission is to facilitate open dialogue in various areas of business and transactional law, to provide a forum for students to network both within the USD community as well as the surrounding legal community, to educate interested students in specialized issues of business law, and to positively impact the community through philanthropic ventures and service projects.

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    USD BLS Website

  • Criminal Law Society

    The purpose of the Criminal Law Society is to provide professional development and networking opportunities for law students interested in criminal law. We promote the practice of criminal law through informational meetings, seminars, speakers, and networking events. The Criminal Law Society was formed to provide a resource for students interested in pursuing criminal law on either the prosecution or defense side.

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  • Employment and Labor Law Society (EALLS)

    EALLS' purpose is to provide students interested in employment and labor law opportunities to learn more about the field and network with attorneys in the field.

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    Web pages

    EALLS Facebook Page

  • Environmental Law Society (ELS)

    The purpose of the Environmental Law Society is to increase awareness of environmental issues and their legal, political and social implications; to provide students with practical experience in the field of environmental law; to create opportunities for students to connect with local attorneys and other professionals working in the field; and to encourage and organize green and sustainable initiatives on the USD campus and in the San Diego community.

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    ELS Facebook Page

  • Federalist Society, The

    The Federalist Society is a group of conservatives and libertarians interested in the current state of legal scholarship. It is founded on the principles that the state exists to preserve freedom, that separation of governmental powers is central to our Constitution, and that it is emphatically the province and duty of the judiciary to say what the law is, not what it should be. The Federalist Society seeks to both promote an awareness of these principles and to further their application.

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    Web pages

    USD Federalist Society Facebook Page

  • Golf Law Society (GLS)

    The Golf Law Society aims to provide a recreational, networking, and mentorship forum for law students, faculty, and staff members who are interested in the game of golf.

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    Name

  • Health Law Society (HLS)

    The Health Law Society brings together students and members of the community to enhance understanding of health law issues. Our goal is to increase health law career opportunities by forming alliances with industry associations and members of the community, hosting speaker events, creating a strong alumni network, and developing professional relationships with potential employers. We support and work to enhance the University of San Diego School of Law's reputation for excellence in health law academics.

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    Web pages

    HLS TWEN Page

  • Immigrant Justice Law Society (IJLS)

    The purpose of the Immigrant Justice Law Society (IJLS) is to promote the rights of immigrants and the global issues that affect immigrant communities. As a member of the San Diego Legal community, IJLS will help to enhance access to legal aid and to further justice for immigrants, undocumented and documented alike.

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  • Intellectual Property Law Association (IPLA)

    IPLA's purpose is to provide students interested in, or curious about, intellectual property law opportunities to learn about the variety of careers in the field. IPLA also organizes social events that enable students to learn about and interact with IP attorneys. Additionally, IPLA offers students a chance to network and meet other students interested in IP law.

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  • International Law Society (ILS)

    The purpose of the International Law Society is to provide students insight into the practice of international law through panel discussions, networking events, and speaker series regarding various topics in international law. We hope to educate students, provide resources regarding career opportunities in international law, and work with USD to facilitate involvement with the San Diego community and the greater international community.

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    Web pages

    ILS Facebook Page

  • J. Reuben Clark Law Society (JRCLS)

    We affirm the strength brought to the study of law by a law student's personal religious conviction. We strive through public service and diligence in our studies to promote fairness and virtue founded upon the rule of law.

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    Web pages

    JRCLS website

  • Jewish Law Students Association (JLSA)

    The purpose of JLSA is to represent the interests of Jewish students within the USD community through various events; educate the USD community; participate in and increase diversity initiatives; and promote the acceptance and inclusions of all minorities and religions.

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    Web pages

    JLSA Facebook Page

  • La Raza Law Students Association

    The primary mission of the USD Law Raza Law Students Association is to articulate and promote the educational, professional, political and social needs and goals of Latino law students. We strive to facilitate discourse and professionalism among all law students on campus and instill in all members of USD Law Raza a greater commitment to the needs of the Latino community.

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    Web pages

    La Raza Facebook Page

  • Middle Eastern Law Students Association (MELSA)

    MELSA's purpose is to provide a supportive, pro-active environment to address the legal issues facing the Middle Eastern community, as well as to create a forum for networking between the organization's members and attorneys practicing in San Diego. Our mission is to stay connected and maintain a sense of unity, while fostering a mutual understanding between nth diverse cultures and backgrounds represented at the University of San Diego.

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    Web pages

    MELSA Facebook Page

  • Military Bar Association (MilBar)

    The Military Bar Association aims to provide a networking and mentorship forum to student veterans and other law students interested in the military. Additionally, our organization seeks to promote and participate in community service in the San Diego area. All students are encouraged to join.

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    MilBar Facebook Page

  • Motions

    Our mission is to provide news, information, analysis and commentary to the students, faculty, staff and alumni of the University of San Diego School of Law and the general San Diego legal community. Because journalistic excellence is the foundation for our success, we pledge to seek and report the truth with honesty, accuracy and fairness.

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    Web pages

    Motions Online

    Office

    WH 114B
  • National Trial Team

    USD’s National Trial Team trains students for regional and national trial competitions. Competing in five major tournaments each year, the team is dedicated to teaching the art of trial advocacy and molding strong future litigators. Members of the trial team are selected through participation in a spring intramural competition.  The team is coached by seasoned attorneys with both mock trial and real-life litigation experience. Competing members can receive academic credit.

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  • Phi Alpha Delta (PAD)

    Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity International is a professional law fraternity advancing integrity, compassion and courage through service to the student, school, profession, and community. We are the preeminent law fraternity promoting the bonds of fraternalism and we are the leader in development and advancement of professional ideals. We promote professionalism and networking among law students and attorneys in the southern California region.

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    Web pages

    PAD National Fraternity Website

    USD PAD Facebook Page

  • Phi Delta Phi (PDP)

    Phi Delta Phi promotes the advancement of the highest intellectual, professional, and ethical standards within the University of San Diego School of Law community. Wigmore Inn and its members are charged with the responsibility to seek and promote excellence in scholastic and ethical standards in order to achieve this goal.

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    Web pages

    PDP national organization website

  • Pride Law

    USD Pride Law seeks a university and world community which respects and embraces the uniqueness and contributions of every individual. Pride Law affords an opportunity for sharing ideas and values from the traditions and history of the LGBT community. We also seek to advance understanding of legal issues affecting the LGBT community and provide networking opportunities for law students in the San Diego community.

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  • Public Interest Law Foundation (PILF)

    The Public Interest Law Foundation (PILF) connects students who are eager to support their communities to public interest internships and careers where they can make a difference. We are a community of law students and alumni devoted to public interest advocacy.

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    PILF Facebook Page

  • Real Estate and Land Use Society (RELUS)

    The mission of the Real Estate and Land Use Society is to educate and facilitate interest in the different areas and issues in the area of real property and land use law; to provide a forum for professional development and networking opportunities within the USD community and surrounding legal community; and to promote the practice of real estate and land use law.

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    Web pages

    RELUS Facebook Page

  • Saint Thomas More Society (STMS)

    The purpose of the St. Thomas More Society is to promote high ethical and moral principles in the legal profession. In addition, we aim to build a network amongst students and local attorneys who share in those same ethical values.

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  • Sports and Entertainment Law Society (SELS)

    SELS is a student-run organization dedicated to providing information, career support, and social activity for students interested in sports and entertainment industry careers. We are committed to increasing student exposure to the industry. We seek to achieve our goals by arranging guest speakers that will examine topical issue in sports and entertainment law. Through these events, our organization strives to provide a realistic introduction to the entry level sports and entertainment law market for today's law student.

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    SELS Facebook Page

  • Student Bar Association (SBA)

    All law students are members of the Student Bar Association (SBA). The SBA is the student government of the School of Law. The Executive Board consists of the President, Vice President, Vice President of Student Organizations, Secretary, and Treasurer. Also part of the SBA council are elected representatives from each class year and registered student groups. First-year representatives are elected at the beginning of the fall semester, one representative per section. An LLMC representative is also elected at the start of the fall semester.

    SBA members act as the official student representatives and advocate for student interests on many different issues. The SBA is responsible for appointing student representatives to the various law school and university committees.

    The main goal of the SBA is to represent and serve the student body. To that end, it must determine what university events and issues affect law students, ensure that law students are represented on those issues, and advocate their interests.

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    Web pages

    Office

    Warren Hall, The Writs Room 114F
  • Students for Cross-Racial Understanding (S4CRU)

    The purpose of Students for Cross-Racial Understanding is to encourage law students to engage in sophisticated, high-level discussions concerning racism, sexism, and other forms of discrimination in hopes of creating bridges of understanding. We also focus on spreading a message of unity and inclusion to high school students via facilitated weekly presentations based on selected readings.

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  • Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP)

    SSDP is an international grassroots network of students who are concerned about the impact drug abuse has on our communities, but who also know that the War on Drugs is failing our generation and society. SSDP mobilizes and empowers young people to participate in the legal and political process, pushing for sensible policies to achieve a safer and more just future. 

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    Web pages

    National SSDP organization website

  • Tax Law Society (TLS)

    The focus of the Tax Law Society is to educate and generate interest in law students about the different areas and issues in tax law, and to create opportunities for students to network with tax practitioners and professors.

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    Web pages

    TLS Facebook Page

  • Transactional Law Team (TLT)

    The Transactional Law Team competes in the National Transactional Law Meet. We provide a forum for students to hone their corporate and transactional law skills, to explore the M&A process, and to further develop their negotiation tactics. Through preparation for and participation in transactional law competitions, members of TLT will obtain an inside look into a practical corporate transaction deal and will have the ability to utilize those skills in future practice as corporate attorneys.

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    Web pages

    USD TLT Facebook Page

  • USD Law Republicans (USDLR)

    USD Law Republicans promote economic growth, liberty, and the rule of law through reasoned debate. We organize networking sessions, panel discussions, speaking events, and volunteer activities in the San Diego Community.

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  • Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot (VICAM)

    The Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot (VICAM) Team competes in the area of international commercial law and arbitration, specifically at the the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot in Vienna, Austria and Hong Kong. The mission of the team is to foster the development of international legal writing, arbitration, and oral advocacy skills among its members; to promote professionalism and academic excellence; to employ the talent and coaching of the faculty; to maintain the school's outstanding reputation through international competitions; and to keep pace with the advancements of international law and commerce.

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    Web pages

    VICAM website

  • Women’s Law Caucus (WLC)

    The goal of the Women's Law Caucus is to bring together the community of USD law students interested in exploring the wide spectrum of legal issues affecting women. We actively accomplish this goal by 1) facilitating increased awareness and understanding of these issues through club-sponsored events; 2) empowering future female leaders and enhancing the role of women in the legal community; 3) promoting awareness of various social, economic, legal and political issues that impact women; and 4) increasing the potential of the student body to effect meaningful change, both within the USD community and the community at large.

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    Facebook Page