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. In addition, the BLC program expands the educational experience beyond the traditional classroom by requiring students to attend Law School programming—such as invited speakers, panels, and symposia—throughout the academic year. In these events, BLC students hear about cutting-edge legal issues from practicing lawyers who are experts in their practice areas.
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.
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)
Additional Required Courses
Students in the concentration are required to take two of the following menu of courses:
- Bankruptcy (3 credits)
- Compliance (3 credits)
- Corporate and White Collar Crime (3 credits)
- Business Ethics (3 credits)
- Insurance Law (2 credits)
- Intellectual Property (3 credits)
- International Business Transactions (3 credits)
- Law of Investment Management (2 credits)
- Mergers & Acquisitions (2 credits)
- Regulation of Financial Institutions (2 credits)
- SEC Enforcement (2 credits)
- Secured Transactions (2 credits)
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
- Research Paper Requirement (2-3 credits): To satisfy the Research Paper Requirement, students are required to select a business law topic for their research papers. The topic must be approved by one of the Business Law Concentration's faculty advisors. Students can enroll in any research paper class (or directed research course) to satisfy this requirement.
Experiential Learning Requirement (6 credits):
- 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.
Business Law Concentration Approved Events:
- Any program sponsored by the Law School's Center on Law, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation
- Certain events sponsored by student organizations (if the topic is relevant);
- The Corporate Law Society's annual CLE event
- Conferences and symposia offered at the Law School (if the topic is relevant)
- Speakers presenting at the Villanova School of Business (if the topic is relevant)
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.
Upon acceptance into the concentration, each student will be assigned an alumni mentor in the business law area.
Other Graduation Requirements:
To graduate, you will need a minimum of 91 credits. The concentration consists of 37-43 credits, depending on whether you select electives of two or three credits and depending on whether you participate in the Entrepreneurship Clinic, as opposed to participating in an externship. That means you will have to take an additional 5-11 credits of electives to reach the graduation requirement of 91 credits. If you are on a journal or on the Moot Court Board, remember that you will receive a total of four credits that count towards your electives.
For more guidance, take a look at this sample schedule for a student in the Business Law Concentration.