Through our in-house legal clinics, students gain invaluable hands-on experience while serving real clients in need facing critical legal issues.

Our clinics are one place where everything in our students’ journeys come together—they represent a convergence of classroom work, commitment to the common good and real-world practice. They are a place where students earn academic credit while having a formative experience through direct client representation, all on a pro bono basis. Under the direct supervision of a full-time faculty member, students learn by doing.

During their intensive semester-long clinic commitment, students are the primary advocates for their clients—interviewing, counseling, negotiating agreements, structuring deals, drafting legal documents or representing them in court. Depending on their client’s goals and needs, they may master strategies for negotiation, the art of fact investigation, executing a trial strategy or the benefits of being part of a collaborative team.

Most importantly, students practice ethical client-centered lawyering and reflect on whether justice is done in the legal system, all while serving the community and changing lives. Participating in a clinic allows students to actively live out Villanova’s mission—nurturing a concern for the common good and becoming responsible and productive citizens who build a just and peaceful world.

Our Clinics

A hallmark of the Villanova clinical experience is student responsibility for the legal representation of clients. Clinical students acquire fundamental lawyering skills by assuming direct responsibility for case management and preparation. The client is fundamentally your client.

  • You interview, counsel and manage all communications with your client
  • You identify your client’s goals, as well as the issues affecting your clients and the resources available for resolving them
  • You develop a case theory and a case plan to achieve your client’s goals
  • You identify and resolve the ethical issues that arise in your case 
  • You investigate the facts of your client’s case
  • You find the law controlling your client’s case
  • You will draft, revise and finalize any necessary case documents, which may include complaints, answers, motions, evidentiary exhibits, applications, briefs, contracts, research memos, organizational documents, professional correspondence, or more
  • You are lead counsel at any trials and hearings and in negotiations and board meetings
  • You are responsible for due diligence throughout your legal work


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