Certificate Programs

Students at Western State College of Law have the opportunity to earn certificates in a number of growing and dynamic practice areas, namely business law, criminal law, immigration law, family law, and real estate. To receive a certificate, students must complete a rigorous course of study involving a combination of required courses, electives, and – in most cases – experiential learning and pro bono/public service. The required courses enable students to gain the fundamental components of these practice areas, which are often interdisciplinary in nature. A range of elective courses provide students with the flexibility to craft their law school education around their own interests and career goals.

All of the certificates expose students to the realities of practice in addition to the theories and doctrines behind each area of law. A full-time member of the Western State faculty with prior practice experience in the certificate’s subject matter area directs each certificate program. By including experiential learning through the law school’s externship and clinical programs, the certificates expose students to practical skills training in which they receive certification from the State Bar of California to directly represent real clients. And the pro bono and public service requirements reflect the law school’s commitment to serving the community.

Below is a list of Western State’s certificate programs:

Business Law Certificate

Faculty Advisor: Professor Tracie Porter
Required courses: Administrative Law, Business Associations, Business Law Ethics, Contracts I and II, Contracts Drafting, Federal Income Taxation, Financial Principles/Corp. Finance and Sales
Elective courses: 5 units, earned through a range of courses such as Entertainment Law, Environmental Law, Intellectual Property, Sports Law, etc.

Criminal Law Certificate

Faculty Advisor: Professor Elizabeth Jones
Required courses: Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Evidence, Trial Practice (Criminal), Criminal Justice Ethics
Required Experiential Learning: 5 units, earned through Criminal Law Externship
Elective courses: 3 units, earned through a range of courses such as Death Penalty, Law of Vice, National Security, Juvenile Law, etc.
Pro bono/public service requirement: 15 hours

Immigration Law Certificate

Faculty Advisor: Professor Jennifer Koh
Required courses: Immigration Law, Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Constitutional Law
Required Experiential Learning: 5 units, earned either through Immigration Clinic or Civil Externship (with immigration law placement)
Elective courses: 6 units, earned through a range of courses such as Administrative Law, Criminal Justice Ethics, Advanced Immigration Clinic, International Human Rights, etc.
Pro bono requirement: 25 hours

Family Practice Certificate

Faculty Advisor: Professor Monica Todd
Required courses: Property I and II, Community Property, Federal Income Taxation and Family Law
Required Experiential Learning: 5 units, earned either through Immigration Clinic or Civil Externship (both requiring a family practice component).
Elective courses: 6 units, earned through a range of courses such as Juvenile Law, Domestic Violence, Law Practice Management, etc.
Pro bono/public service requirement: 15 hours

Real Estate Practice Certificate

Faculty Advisor: Professor Tracie Porter
Required courses: Contracts I and II, Property I and II, Community Property
Required Experiential Learning: 5 units, earned through a Civil Externship with a real estate law-related placement.
Elective courses: 7 units, earned through a range of courses such as Tax, Wills and Trusts, Real Estate Transactions and Real Estate Secured Transactions, etc.
Pro bono/public service requirement: 15 hours