Public Interest Law Certificate, Law (JD)

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To earn a Certificate in Public Interest Law, a student must complete the 86 credit hours required for the Juris Doctor degree and satisfy all JD requirements. 

Within the course work required for the JD, a student must complete at least 15 credit hours from the approved list of public interest law courses and complete the Service in Public Interest Law requirement, as listed below.

An applicant must earn a minimum GPA of 3.0 in the Certificate courses. If a student takes more than 15 hours of courses from the approved list, all grades earned in those courses will be factored into the minimum 3.0 GPA requirement for the Certificate.  

Previously taught courses, courses offered in other DePaul Colleges, and new courses and seminars that may be added to the curriculum may qualify for the Certificate with approval.

Students may apply for only one Certificate. 

For more information, contact Faculty Certificate Director for Public Interest Law, Shaye Loughlin.

Foundations of Public Interest Law 

Course Title Semester Hours
Select at least one of the following courses:3
FEDERAL COURTS
FIRST AMENDMENT: FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND RELIGION
CIVIL RIGHTS
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW
CRIMINAL PROCEDURE I: INVESTIGATION
LEGISLATION AND STATUTORY INTERPRETATION

Students may take the remainder of their courses from the following:

Legal Aid

Course Title Semester Hours
EMPLOYMENT DISCRIMINATION
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PRACTICUM
SENIOR RESEARCH SEMINAR (approved topic)
EMPLOYMENT LAW
ANIMAL LAW
INTERNATIONAL LAW
PREDATORY LENDING
HOUSING LAW
CONSUMER PROTECTION
RACE, RACISM AND UNITED STATES LAW
IMMIGRATION LAW AND POLICY
ASYLUM AND REFUGEE LAW AND POLICY
MISSION-BASED LAWYERING: LEGAL PRACTICE IN THE NON-PROFIT SECTOR
POVERTY LAW
COMMUNITY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
CONSTITUTIONAL TORTS & SECTION 1983
ELDER LAW

Criminal Law

Course Title Semester Hours
SENIOR RESEARCH SEMINAR (Crimmigration: Immigration and Criminal Law; Sexual Trafficking; or other approved topic)
JUVENILE JUSTICE
PROSECUTING & DEFENDING CRIMINAL CASES
EVIDENCE
FEDERAL CRIMINAL LAW
INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL LAW
CRIMINAL PROCEDURE I: INVESTIGATION
CRIMINAL PROCEDURE II: ADJUDICATION

Civil Rights & Public Policy

Course Title Semester Hours
SEXUAL ORIENTATION AND THE LAW
HUMAN RIGHTS PRACTICUM: CHIAPAS
CATHOLIC SOCIAL JUSTICE & THE LAW
SENIOR RESEARCH SEMINAR (Critical Race Theory; Feminist Juriprudence; or other approved topic)
WOMEN'S HUMAN RIGHTS UNDER INTERNATIONAL LAW
INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS LAW PRACTICUM
PRIVACY LAW
ANIMAL LAW
ELECTION LAW
LABOR LAW
INTERNATIONAL LAW
ENVIRONMENTAL LAW
HOUSING LAW
RACE, RACISM AND UNITED STATES LAW
CIVIL RIGHTS
CONSTITUTIONAL TORTS & SECTION 1983

Service in Public Interest Law

Students must satisfy both of the following experiences:

  1. One semester in a public service-oriented clinic, field clinic, or extern program and
  2. 50 hours of service through the Pro Bono Community Service Initiative.