Student Organizations are a vibrant and vital part of the student life experience at the University of South Carolina School of Law. The School of Law focuses on creating not only excellent lawyers but lawyer-leaders that take their experiences both inside and outside the classroom and help their community move to the next level! Participation in an organization supports social development, leadership skills and potential networking opportunities as well as multiple opportunities to give back to both the legal and local communities and a variety of ways.
The School of Law is home to approximately 32 student organizations, four academic journals and two academic intramural competition teams.
Per University policy, a student on Academic Probation, may not hold a leadership position within a student organization.
ABA Real Property, Trust & Estate Law Journal –
The Student Editorial Board of the American Bar Association (ABA) Real Property,
Trust & Estate Law Journal performs the necessary editorial functions for this publication,
which has the second most subscribers of all national law review journals. Members
are selected annually from the first year class by a designated faculty committee
on the basis of first year grades and writing competition entries. As members of the
ABA Journal staff, students have the rare opportunity to write an article and be published
in a national journal. Additionally, the ABA traditionally awards scholarships to
those rising third year ABA Journal members who are then selected by the student committee
and faculty advisors to be student editors.
Journal of Law & Education –
The Journal of Law and Education (JLED) is a quarterly publication that focuses on all aspects of law related to education, especially constitutional issues, with an emphasis on critical current and emerging issues in school law. The target audience includes lawyers, law students, educators, and educational institutions. The JLED is produced by the University of South Carolina School of Law and the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville and is jointly run by students and faculty. The JLED has been a part the University of South Carolina since the 1960s, its creation prompted by the tumultuous civil rights issues at the forefront of school education of that time.
Members of the JLED assist in preparing articles for publication by performing thorough editing of each article. The JLED also offers students an opportunity to publish student notes (student commentary on current educational issues), though this is not a requirement. Third year Student Editors are selected by faculty, with academic credit available for some positions.
South Carolina Journal of International Law and Business –
The South Carolina Journal of International Law and Business seeks to create a forum for discussion of issues relevant to international law and business, such as transnational commercial arbitration, admiralty and maritime law, and transnational litigation. The Journal publishes semi-annual scholarly journals and engages professionals and scholars through its biennial symposia, which educate students, faculty, and the legal community on issues in international law and business. The Journal welcomes submission of articles from scholars, practitioners, businesspeople, government officials, judges, and students on topics relating to international law and business. The Journal prepares its members for practice by providing practical, analytical, and legal writing experience. Journal members are required to submit a student note or a case comment that addresses an issue in international law or business. Membership selection is determined in accordance with the Journal’s Bylaws and School of Law’s Joint Journal Writing Competition (“JJWC”). Journal membership shall not be limited to persons based on their race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability or veteran status. For more information, visit http://scjilb.org/scjilb/.
South Carolina Law Review –
The Law Review is a student organization that selects, edits, and publishes scholarly material for the benefit of the legal community and the scholarly community generally. The members and editorial board of the Law Review benefit from rigorous training and useful experience in scholarly research, analysis, and writing. All 1Ls are eligible to compete for membership at the end of their first year on the basis of their grades and their performance on a research-and-writing exercise. While most articles published by the Law Review are the work of established scholars, the Law Review will consider for publication student work, regardless of whether the author is a member of the Review.
Academic Intramural Competition Teams:
Mock Trial –
The USC School of Law Mock Trial program is the only student organization dedicated to trial advocacy training and competition. Our mission is to develop interest in trial practice and to provide students with an opportunity to gain applicable trial skills and experience while still in law school. Our members compete all around the country with other top Mock Trial programs, fielding teams in both the Fall and Spring semesters. The Mock Trial Bar also hosts an annual internal competition, which is open to all second- and third-year students. With our program’s continued success, we are committed to forging the next generation of great trial lawyers.
Moot Court Bar –
The purposes of the Moot Court Bar are to conduct two annual intramural appellate advocacy competitions, to select and prepare student competition teams to represent the Law School in external regional and national competitions, and to encourage students to refine their analytical, writing and oral advocacy skills. Membership in the Moot Court Bar is open to second- and third-year students. The Moot Court Bar conducts an intramural competition in the fall semester to select new members from the second-year class. Participants in that competition prepare an appellate brief in a hypothetical case before the Supreme Court of the United States and argue the case in preliminary rounds before panels of lawyers from the community, serving as members of the Court. The sixteen highest-scoring students are inducted as new members of the Moot Court Bar. In the final round, the four highest-scoring students argue the case in the South Carolina Court of Appeals before a panel of three of the members of that Court. In the spring semester, the Moot Court Bar sponsors the J. Woodrow Lewis Competition, which is open to all second- and third-year students. In that competition, teams of student advocates prepare appellate briefs in a hypothetical case before the Supreme Court of the United States and argue it in preliminary rounds. The two highest scoring teams argue the case in the final round before the justices of the South Carolina Supreme Court.
Non-Academic Student Organizations:
Student organizations that are registered with the University of South Carolina School of Law are eligible for benefits, including financial support from allocated student activity fees, as well as the use of university facilities. All student organizations are open to students on a nondiscriminatory basis.
Law students interested in forming a club or organization should contact the Office of Student Affairs.
For a full list of student organizations, please reference the School of Law website.
Honor Council –
The purpose of the Honor Council is to educate students on both Academic and Personal Integrity and Responsibility as a set of ethical guidelines governing law student behavior both in and outside of the classroom. During Orientation, all incoming students are required to sign a pledge signifying their commitment to adhere to the high standards of both Academic and Personal Integrity and Responsibility while they are in the law school.
Student Bar Association –
The Student Bar Association (SBA) is the official student government organization for the law school. The overall function of the SBA is to provide for the general welfare of all law students. It represents student interests and serves as the liaison between the student body, faculty, and administration. It also provides many services for the student body, including social events, intramural sports, and support for student organizations, and assists the administration with the Peer Mentor Program.