Public Interest and Social Justice Certificate

The Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice at Berkeley Law administers a specialized certificate program for graduating J.D. and LL.M. students that recognizes successful completion of a course of study focused on public interest and social justice.

DEADLINES

For spring graduation, the final deadline for submitting the application is July 1 of the student’s graduation year.  For December graduates, the final deadline for submitting the application is December 31 of their graduation year.  However, if students wish to be noted in the graduation program as having received the certificate, they must submit the application by March 1 of their graduation year.  


SUBMISSION PROCESS

Complete the online application form by clicking on the button below.

Online-Application-Form-300x119


REQUIREMENTS

J.D. students must complete the following to be eligible for the Certificate:

  1. At least two (2) courses listed under the Social Justice and Public Interest category in the course catalog. Courses must be at least two units to qualify.
  2. At  least one (1) course in the law school’s clinical program (in-house or EBCLC) or completion of a field placement with a public interest/social justice focus.
  3. One (1) core course in procedure from the following list of core courses:
    • Complex Civil Litigation
    • Evidence
    • Criminal Procedure
    • Administrative Law
    • Constitutional Litigation
    • Legislation
    • Federal Courts
  4. One (1) paper or other written product on a public interest/social justice topic that meets the standards for either Option 1 or Option 2 of the the J.D. writing requirement. Refer to the Academic Rules for the complete scope and standards of this requirement. Students should submit a paper written to fulfill a course requirement at Berkeley Law; LAW 299 individual research-and-writing projects can also meet this requirement.

LL.M. students must complete the following to be eligible for the Certificate:

  1. At least two (2) courses listed under the Social Justice and Public Interest category in the course catalog. Courses must be at least two units to qualify.
  2. Sixty (60) hours participation in a Student-Initiative Legal Services Project (SLPS), clinic, or field placement with a public interest/social justice focus.
  3. One (1) core course in procedure from the following list of core courses:
    • Complex Civil Litigation
    • Evidence
    • Criminal Procedure
    • Administrative Law
    • Constitutional Litigation
    • Legislation
    • Federal Courts
  4. One (1) paper or other written product on a public interest/social justice topic that meets the standards for the writing requirement.

VARIANCES

There is some flexibility in the application of the certificate requirements, allowing students to substitute other curricular activities for a shortfall in the formal requirements. Students who are close to meeting the Public Interest and Social Justice certificate requirements may submit a Public Interest and Social Justice certificate application along with a brief (one paragraph) request for a variance.


Please send questions to pisj.certificate-law@berkeley.edu.