Summer Pre-Law Programs

Summer Pre-Law Programs

Summer pre-law programs are an excellent opportunity for undergrads to learn more about law school! Some are free and other programs have fees and a cost for students to attend. These programs are a different way to explore being pre-law during the summer months. These programs are a solid addition to a resume, but are in no way mandatory for a pre-law student.

Some universities offer pre-law programs on their campuses. This is a way for you to learn more about law school, visit a law school and campus, and learn more about law school in a structured setting. If you are considering attending law school at any of the schools below, these summer pre-law programs are an excellent way to get your foot in the door and experience what your life could be like there throughout law school. In addition, some schools (a few are listed in this blog post) partner with LSAC to offer Pre-Law Undergraduate Scholars (PLUS) programs.  Click here to learn more!

Here is information about five pre-law summer programs, three of which are FREE or low cost.  There are many other programs in many other locations in addition to these five, which are provided on our Compass page. (Not a member of our Compass page? Follow these easy steps to add yourself.)

IIT Chicago-Kent

Program: Pre-Law Undergraduate Scholars (PLUS) Program

Dates: Sunday, May 31, to Friday, June 19, 2020

Cost: FREE

Location: Chicago, IL

Application Deadline: February 28, 2020 — Click here to access

Program Information:  The PLUS program is a free, three-week summer program that will: provide participants with a deeper understanding of legal education via the program’s rigorous doctrinal and experiential skills-based curriculum; help participants develop essential core competencies needed to succeed in the law school application and admissions process, as well as insight into navigating the process; and expose students to a wide range of career paths within the legal profession.

Students must attend all classes and participate in all program activities in order to be accepted and to receive a stipend. This is a full-time commitment. Therefore, students must be available during the day and some evenings, and have no outside commitments that would prevent them from giving the program their full attention. Students must agree to provide PLUS administrators with education and career updates after completion of the program.

Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Program: Robert H. McKinney School of Law Summer Law and Leadership Academy

Dates:  June 1-6, 2020 (Sunday May 31 – Move In Day)


Location: Indiana University – Robert H. McKinney School of Law – Indianapolis

Application Deadline: April 3, 2020 — Click here to access

Program Information: The Robert H. McKinney School of Law Summer Law and Leadership Academy is a one-week experience designed to introduce undergraduate students from historically underrepresented backgrounds to law school and various careers that they may pursue with a law degree. If you are selected for the Law and Leadership Academy, you will learn about hot topics in the law and strengthen your academic skills.

University of Minnesota Law School

Program: Minnesota Pre Law Scholars Program (MPLS)

Dates:  Early June – Mid August 2020

Cost:  Participants must submit a $100 seat deposit which is fully refundable upon successful completion of the program. All books and study materials will be provided.

Location: University of Minnesota

Application Deadline: March 6th, 2020 — Click here to access

Program Information: College students considering law school, especially rising seniors and those from groups historically underrepresented in law school are encouraged to apply. The program is open to undergraduate students (and recent alums) from any undergraduate institution.

Cornell University Summer Pre-Law Program and Internship

Dates: June 8 – July 17, 2020

Cost: $6,830 (Participants will receive 4 course credits)

Location: New York City

Application Deadline: April 1, 2020

Program Information: During the first three weeks of the program, you’ll be enrolled in the four-credit course The American Legal System, taught by  attorney C. Evan Stewart using the Socratic method practiced at most U.S. law schools.

During the second three weeks of the program, if you’ve received an internship placement*, you’ll devote full days to your internship, which may be at a law firm or in the legal department of a corporation, government agency, or nonprofit organization. A final exam will take place during the week of June 29, 2020, exact date is TBD.

Click here for more information and to apply.

Duke University School of Law

D.C. Summer Institute on Law and Policy

Dates: July 6-16 or July 20-30, 2020

Cost: $600 for a single course; $400 for each additional course

Enrollment Deadline: Enrollment is now open!

Program Information: Classes will be limited in size in order to facilitate interaction between faculty members and students. Registration and tuition will include weekly special events for program participants and written and other course materials. Upon successful completion of the program, participants will be awarded a certificate endorsed by the Dean of Duke Law School, Kerry Abrams, and Faculty Director of the Institute, Neil Siegel.

The 2020 program will take place over the weeknights of two, two-week sessions: July 6-16, 2020, and July 20-July 30, 2020; classes meet on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday evenings, with Wednesday evenings reserved for special programs. D.C. Institute classes will be held at Duke in DC, located at 1201 Pennsylvania Avenue NW. Courses will introduce participants to legal reasoning, US constitutional law, with a focus on timely subjects such as the constitutionality of affirmative action programs, current topics in race, elections, and politics. Click here for more information and to enroll.

LSAC Pre-Law Undergraduate Scholars (PLUS) at Duke Law School

Dates: May 31-June 26, 2020

Cost: FREE

Application Deadline: March 16, 2020

Program Information: The PLUS Program enrolls 20 to 40 students per year with the ideal candidate being a strong student who is ready to work hard, engage in coursework, and is interested in the access this program provides toward preparing for a legal education.

The PLUS Program is open to students who have completed their freshman or sophomore years at four-year colleges and universities, technical colleges and community colleges. Eligible students will have completed between 24 and 60 credits by the start of the PLUS Program. The program focuses on attracting promising students from groups historically underrepresented in the legal profession, first generation college students and those from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds, as well as students facing other significant barriers to entering the legal profession. For more information and to apply, click on this link.