CONCENTRATIONS

Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law offers five concentrations that focus on specific fields of legal study. In the Spring of the first year of law school, students may choose to apply for a concentration in Business LawIntellectual Property LawHealth Care LawLitigation and Dispute Resolution or Sports Law. Upon acceptance, your curricular requirements will include certain core courses, and you will be required to select additional courses related to your concentration from a list of options. The precise requirements for each concentration are listed below.

Students interested in any of these concentrations must apply in the Spring of 1L year.

 

The Business Law Concentration (BLC) is a competitive program designed to ensure that enrolled students have (1) a strong foundation in the fundamentals of business law; and (2) the skills necessary to successfully begin a career in business law. The six courses that constitute the core curriculum—Business Organizations, Corporate Finance, Securities Regulation, Accounting for Lawyers, Introduction to Federal Taxation, and Survey of Business Tax—lay the groundwork for students to master more specialized corporate law offerings in areas such as mergers and acquisitions, investment management, and securities litigation.

BLC students will then put their legal knowledge to work in the “real world” in each of their 2L and 3L years, through an externship in a variety of field placements and by representing actual clients in the Law School’s Law and Entrepreneurship Clinic.  BLC students continue to refine their writing and analytical skills through several required advanced writing classes that are focused on business law, such as Business Planning.

The BLC would be helpful for students interested in careers in all areas of corporate law, including corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, capital formation (public and private securities offerings), restructuring and bankruptcy, investment management, securities enforcement and litigation, and shareholder actions.  

 

Core Curriculum:

Students in the Business Law Concentration are required to take the following six core courses:

  • Business Organizations (4 credits) (must be taken in Fall of 2L year)
  • Securities Regulation (4 credits)
  • Corporate Finance (3 credits) (must be taken in Spring of 2L year)
  • Accounting for Lawyers (3 credits)
    • This requirement is waived for students who have taken more than two accounting courses in their undergraduate course of study.
  • Introduction to Federal Taxation (3 credits) (must be taken in Fall of 2L year)
  • Survey of Business Taxation (2 credits) (must be taken in Spring of 2L year)

Required Writing Courses:

  • Legal Writing 3 (2 credits): Students are required to take Legal Writing 3 - Transactional Writing Skills
    • BLC students who join the Moot Court Board may instead take Legal Writing 3 - Litigation
  • Practical Writing Requirement (3 credits): Students are required to satisfy the Practical Writing Requirement by taking Business Planning in the Fall of 3L year, which is a capstone course for the Business Law Concentration

Experiential Learning Requirement:

  • Students are required to have a relevant externship (or enroll in the Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic) in each of the 2L year and the 3L year.  At least six experiential credits are required for the concentration.
    • Externship experience must be in an area relevant to business law.  A relevant externship includes placements with organizations with which the Law School has a formal externship relationship, such as Pepper Hamilton (through the Law & Entrepreneurship externship) and Wawa. It also includes organizations that have traditionally placed Villanova students, but with which the Law School does not have a formal arrangement, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission.  In addition, students can create their own externships with corporations, law firms, or appropriate government agencies.  
    • Please note that most judicial externships will not meet the Business Law Concentration requirement because they are not focused on business law.  Exceptions would be clerkships with a federal bankruptcy judge, Delaware Chancery Court, or state or local business courts.
    • An externship must be a minimum of three credits.  You are permitted to participate in an externship that awards more than three credits.  Most students will probably participate in an externship during the academic year, but you can also meet the requirement through a summer externship.

Financial Literacy Module Fellows:

3L students in the Business Law Concentration will be required to assist the Module's practicing attorney faculty in the administration of the 1L Financial Literacy Module.  As "Financial Literacy Module Fellows," the 3L students will help the 1L students work through the "Deal Week" problems.  BLC students will receive one credit for their work as Fellows.

GPA Requirement:

To successfully complete the Business Law Concentration, students must have a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or above in the courses required by the concentration at the time of graduation.

Alumni Mentors:

Upon acceptance into the concentration, each student will be assigned an alumni mentor in the business law area.

Sample Schedule:

For more guidance, take a look at this sample schedule for a student in the Business Law Concentration.

Application Procedure:

Students will apply for seats in the BLC during their second semester of the 1L year.  The deadline will be one month before course registration, which will give the faculty advisor sufficient time to review applications.

Students will submit a letter of interest, articulating their interest in a career in business law, as well as a transcript showing their first semester grades, to the faculty advisor of the BLC.  In addition, the faculty advisor may choose to personally interview applicants.  The selection of students into the BLC will be made by the faculty advisor.

Health lawyers practice at the intersection of law, policy, business, and compliance.  Villanova’s health law concentration offers students a basic understanding of an industry that accounts for nearly a fifth of domestic gross product in the U.S.  In the health law arena, business relationships, payment mechanisms, liability theories, human needs, and governmental programs evolve daily at warp speed. 

Fundamental courses (Health Care and the Law, Health Finance Law, Business Organizations, Administrative Law and Medical Malpractice) provide a jumping off point for students who elect to investigate one of the many practice areas found under the umbrella of “health law.”  These include compliance, white collar crime, employee benefits, health insurance, bioethics, elder law, and business transactions, among others.  Experiential learning characterizes Villanova’s health law concentration.  Students must successfully complete multiple health law-related experiential learning courses, and devote a writing course to a health law topic.  Employment opportunities for health lawyers can be found in law firms of varying sizes, and with government regulators, health care providers, and health insurers.  An added benefit from a study of health law is a deeper understanding of a byzantine system that impacts all of us, our friends, and our families. 

For more information on this concentration, contact Michael Campbell.

 

Core Curriculum:

Required Courses:

Students in the Health Law Concentration would be required to take the following core courses:

  • Health Care and the Law (2 Credits) - (should be taken in Fall of 2L year)]
  • Health Business and Compliance (2 credits) - (should be taken in Spring of 2L year)
  • Medical Malpractice (2 credits) (3 credits)
  • Business Organizations (4 credits)
  • Administrative Law (3 credits)
  • Health Law Related Externship (3 credits)
  • Health Law Clinic (6 credits) OR a second Health Law Related Externship (3 credits)

Additional Required Courses:

Students in the concentration are required to take an additional six credits from among the following courses:

  • Administrative Practice (3 credits)
  • Antitrust (3 credits)
  • Bioethics and the Law (2 credits)
  • Corporate and White Collar Crime (2 credits)
  • Elder Law (2 or 3 credits TBA)
  • Employee Benefits (2 credits)
  •  (2 credits)
  • Insurance Law (3 credits)
  • Law of Drugs and Biologics (2 credits)
  • Law and Psychology (2 credits)
  • Mergers and Acquisitions (2 credits)
  • Privacy (3 credits)
  • Workers' Compensation Law (2 credits)

Extracurricular Requirements:

  • Concentration students are encouraged to participate in the Health Law Society
  • Concentration students are encouraged to join the American Health Lawyers Association

Writing Requirement:

To successfully complete the Health Law Concentration, students must complete the seminar writing paper on an approved health law topic or successfully complete a health law related course which meets the law school's practical writing requirement.

Alumni Mentors:

Upon acceptance into the concentration, each student will be assigned an alumni or other experienced practitioner mentor in the Health Law area.

The Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law IP concentration allows students to show their breadth and depth of IP experience. The concentration includes course requirements in core IP areas including patent and copyright, requires additional coursework in other areas, such as trademark or trade secrets, and offers the freedom to take related classes such as sports law, entertainment law, and internet law. There is a strong writing requirement: both a research paper and a practical writing course focusing on issues in IP law are required. Finally, the concentration allows students to practice using their new skills. Students must complete experiential learning in a clinic or in externships, and they attend some bar functions throughout their coursework.

For more information about this concentration, contact Michael Risch or  Brett Frischmann

 

Core Curriculum

Required Courses:

Students are required to take the following courses:

  • Intellectual property survey (3 credits) (must be taken fall of 2L year)
  • Patent law (2 credits)
  • Copyright law (2 credits)
  • Advanced Intellectual Property research seminar (2-3 credits) (must be taken when offered during 3L year)

Additional required courses:

Students are required to fulfill the following requirements with a choice of courses:

  • One Practical writing course in IP (2 credits): Can be satisfied by
    • Patent Prosecution
    • Trademark Practice
    • Other practical writing classes with the approval of IPLC advisors
  • One additional IP class (2-3 credits): Can be satisfied by
    • International IP
    • Trademark law
    • Trade secret law
    • Design law
    • Patent litigation
    • Patent trial practice
    • Other IP classes as offered
  • One ancillary class (3 credits): Can be satisfied with
    • Internet Law
    • Sports Law
    • Entertainment Law
    • Other IP-related classes with the approval of IPLC advisors

Experiential Learning Requirement (6 credits):

Students are required to take at least six credits of relevant experiential classes, including classes in both the second and third years. The entrepreneurship clinic is an option, but students should be advised not to rely on clinics, as they can fill up.

Extracurricular requirement:

  • IPLC students are required to attend at least two sessions of the Ben Franklin Inns of Court throughout their three years (the school pays for floating memberships)
  • IPLC students are expected to join and participate in the Intellectual Property Law Society
  • IPLC students are encouraged to participate in moot court, law meet, and writing competition activities.

GPA Requirement:

To successfully complete the Intellectual Property Concentration, students are required to have a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or above in the courses required by the concentration.

Alumni Mentors:

Upon acceptance into the concentration, each student is assigned an alumni mentor in the IP area.

This Litigation and Dispute Resolution Concentration allows enrolled students to demonstrate that they have received (1) a strong foundation in the fundamentals of advocacy and dispute resolution and (2) the skills necessary to successfully begin a career as a litigator. In addition to a wide range of litigation and dispute-oriented courses, students will practice their acquired skills when completing their experiential learning requirement. 

For more information on this concentration, contact Christine Mooney.

 

Core Curriculum:

Required Courses:

  • Civil Pretrial or Deposition Strategy & Practice (2)
  • Class Actions & Other Complex Litigation (3)
  • Dispute Resolution or Negotiation and Mediation Advocacy (2 or 3)
  • Evidence (4) - must take in 2L year
  • Legal Writing 3 – Litigation (3) – must take in fall of 2L year and participate in Reimels
  • Trial Advocacy – may take Basic, Basic Plus or Basic Intensive (2-4)

Additional Required Courses:

Students are required to take six additional credits from Menu A and four credits from Menu B:

Menu A

  • Administrative Law (3)
  • Advanced Issues in Criminal Law (2)
  • Advanced Insurance Law** (2)
  • Antitrust (3)
  • Bankruptcy (3)
  • Civil Rights Litigation: Enforcing the Constitution (3)
  • Conflict of Laws (3)
  • Corporate & White Collar Crime (3)
  • Criminal Procedure: Adjudication (3)
  • Damages (2)
  • Death Penalty: Theory and Practice (2)
  • Employment Discrimination (3)
  • Family Law (3)
  • Federal Courts/Federal Systems (3)
  • Immigration Law (2)
  • Insurance Law (3)
  • Medical Malpractice (2)
  • Patent Litigation (2)
  • Patent Prosecution (2)
  • Pennsylvania Civil Procedure (2)
  • Police Conduct Seminar (2)
  • Race and the Law (2)
  • Securities Litigation and Enforcement** (2-3)
  • Workers' Compensation Law (2)

Menu B

  • Accounting for Lawyers (3)
  • Advanced Trial Advocacy – Criminal (2)
  • Civil Pretrial Practice (2)*
  • Computer Apps in Litigation (3)
  • Crime & Emerging Technology
  • Deposition Strategy & Practice (2)*
  • Dispute Resolution (2)*
  • Interviewing/Counseling (2)
  • Law, Science and Advocacy**(2)
  • Negotiation & Mediation Advocacy (3)*
  • Trial Advocacy Competition (2)
  • Trial Advocacy – Advanced Criminal (2)
  • Villanova Sentencing Workshop** (3)

Denotes classes that may be taken to fulfill either core or elective requirements but may not double count toward both. 
** Denotes classes that have prerequisites.

Experiential Requirement:

Students are required to take at least six credits of relevant experiential classes in the second and third years.  In addition to numerous externship placements, the following clinics would satisfy this requirement:

GPA Requirement:

To successfully complete the Litigation and Dispute Resolution Concentration, students are required to have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above in the courses required by the concentration.

Alumni Mentors:

Upon acceptance into the concentration, each student will be assigned an alumni or other experienced practitioner mentor in the Litigation/Dispute Resolution area.

Application Process*:

* Students have through April 2020 to register for the concentration for the 2020-21 academic year depending on course availability.

Students will apply for seats in the Concentration during their first year. The deadline will be one month before course registration, which will give the faculty advisor sufficient time to review applications.

Students will submit a letter of interest, articulating their interest in a career in litigation, as well as a transcript showing their first semester grades, to the faculty advisor of the Litigation and Dispute Resolution Concentration. In addition, the faculty advisor may choose to personally interview applicants. The selection of students into the concentration will be made by the faculty advisor.

Students who did not apply for the Concentration in their first year, or who were not accepted into the Concentration in their first year, may apply for seats in the Concentration in their second year of law school. If there are available slots in the concentration, the faculty advisor will consider their applications. The deadline for these applications will be one month before course registration. To apply, these students must have taken the necessary courses so that they can join the concentration.

The Sports Law Concentration would provide students a unique value-add towards potential careers in amateur and professional sports. It would complement existing programs at the school through the Moorad Center, including rigorous academic study, the highest level of speakers and symposia, innovative Fellowship and internship opportunities, scholarship and research.

For more information on this concentration, contact Andrew Brandt or David Caudill

 

Core Curriculum:

Required Courses:

  • Negotiation & Mediation Adv. (3)
  • Sports Law: Bus of Pro Sports (2)
  • Sports Law III: Advanced Practices, Skills, and Documents (2)
  • Sports Law: Adv. Leg Bus Asp (2)
  • Legal & Comp Iss in Amat Athl (2)
  • Legal Writing 3 – Transactional (3)
  • Contract Drafting, E-Business, or Drafting Business Transactions (3)
  • Directed Research (2) – sports related topic 

Additional Required Courses:

Students are required to take three additional courses from the following selection: 

  • Antitrust (3)
  • Business Organizations (4)
  • Compliance and Risk Management (3)
  • Employment Law (2)
  • Federal Tax (3)
  • Intellectual Property (3)
  • Labor Law (3)

Experiential Requirement:

At least three credits of the externship experience must be in an area relevant to sports law.  A relevant externship would include placements with organizations with which the Law School has a formal externship relationship or any sports-related organization, such as an agent or sports team. In addition, students can create their own externships with corporations or appropriate law firms that do sports law-related work.  Please note that most judicial externships will not meet the Sports Law Concentration requirement because they are not focused on sports law.  Exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis.

GPA Requirement:

To successfully complete the Sports Law Concentration, students will be required to have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above in the courses required by the concentration. Requiring students to have at least a B in the concentration courses demonstrates that the student has achieved the purpose of the concentration.

Other Requirements:

In the students first year of law school, they will attend the information session and course planning meeting about the concentration.

In the second year, students in the concentration will partake in Sports Law Society and related events as well as compete in case competitions put on by Sports Law Society. Additionally, students must attend at least three speakers for the Moorad Speaker Series (subject to change depending on how many speakers), provide an entry for the Moorad Blog, attend the Moorad Sports Law Journal Symposium, and attend a networking event. This event should be sports-related or have sports professionals in attendance.

During the fall semester of the third year, each student must complete an application verifying they will meet all the requirements of the Sports Law Concentration. Professor Brandt will contract each candidate with instructions. During the spring semester, each student must complete an exit survey and exit interview. Additionally, students must attend at least three speakers for the Moorad Speaker Series (subject to change depending on how many speakers), provide an entry for the Moorad Blog, attend the Moorad Sports Law Journal Symposium, and attend a networking event. This event should be sports-related or have sports professionals in attendance.

Mentorship:

Once students are accepted into the concentration, they will be assigned a mentor within the sports law area.

Application Process:

Students interested in applying for the Sports Law Concentration will do so in their first year. The deadline will be one month before course registration, leaving enough time for the faculty advisor to review applications. Prior to applications becoming due, Professors Brandt and Caudill will hold an information session and students will receive a detailed description of the program. Applicants will submit the following to Professor Brandt:

  • Letter of application, explaining interest in sports law and the Sports Law Concentration
  • Resume
  • Law school transcript

In addition, the faculty advisor may choose to personally interview applicants.