The Michigan State University College of Law is an independent, private law school academically integrated with Michigan State University (MSU), one of the top universities in the world. MSU has one of the largest international student populations in the country, with more than 15 percent hailing from other countries.
The relationship with MSU means that MSU Law students get all the benefits of a small, student-centered law college, while also enjoying the resources of a distinguished Big Ten university. MSU Law students truly have the best of both worlds. This relationship also allows MSU Law international students to fully participate in an amazing assortment of extracurricular experiences, from cheering on the Spartan football team with 100,000 other fans on a Saturday afternoon, to seeing a Broadway show across the street from the Law College at the MSU Wharton Center, to joining any one of MSU’s 500+ student organizations.
MSU Law professors are gifted teachers and well-respected scholars. The Law College curriculum is rigorous and challenging, and the facility is equipped with the latest technology—all affirming MSU Law’s commitment to educating 21st-century lawyers. With a focus on technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship within the legal profession, MSU Law courses give students an advantage in the modern legal marketplace.
Though researching and publishing on critical legal issues, MSU Law professors maintain a focus on teaching. These distinguished professors make a point of being accessible to their students, and provide mentoring and personal attention to those they teach.
Accessibility and community don’t just happen in the classroom at MSU Law. The college hosts regular lunches and events for international students, including a special Thanksgiving feast, weekly lunches, and unique academic support programs. The LLM and MJ Student Association offers its own wide range of programming, from socials off-campus to panel discussions about current events.
Benefits of attending MSU Law continue after graduation, as our graduates join a global network of more than 500,000 alumni. Around the globe, across the nation, throughout Michigan, or on campus, the MSU Law community supports you as you make your mark on the world. Our alumni are doing just that. Whether judges at the bench in Turkey and the Philippines, intellectual property specialists in Brazil or China, transactional attorneys in Indonesia or Japan, or law professors in Poland and Iraqi Kurdistan, our graduates are making an impact.
Law School Enrollment
Michigan State University College of Law has a total enrollment of approximately 900 students, about 10 percent of whom are international. The graduate programs enroll approximately 100 students per year, while the Legal English for Academic Preparation (LEAP) program offers about 20 students a year the opportunity to improve their English proficiency at MSU’s English Language Center before joining the Master of Laws (LLM) and Masters of Jurisprudence (MJ) programs.
For students who need or want additional preparation before joining a graduate program, MSU Law also offers the Law Institute, a bridge program focused on the traditional English as a Second Language (ESL) model of speaking, writing, listening, and reading—all with a legal focus through courses like Negotiation for Foreign Educated Lawyers, Reading Comprehension for Foreign Educated Lawyers, Civil Litigation Practice and Procedure, American Constitutional Law, and Legal English.
The Law College makes its home on the beautiful MSU campus in East Lansing, Michigan—the arts, cultural, and recreational center of mid-Michigan. Everything students need for their studies is located in one building in the heart of the largest continuous campus in the country. MSU Law is just minutes from the state capital, allowing for unique opportunities to observe state government and the Michigan Supreme Court up close.
All Law College classrooms, offices, lounges, and meeting spaces are located in the Law College building, along with a small cafeteria. The Law College’s John F. Schaefer Law Library dominates the first floor of the building, with an impressive collection of materials (260,000 volumes), computer terminals, and ample study space. The entire campus is wireless, and all classrooms have power portals so that students can plug in their laptops and tablets.
Students can use one of the fitness facilities on campus, eat at any of the many cafeterias and restaurants within a short walk from the Law College, grab a coffee at the Starbucks across the street, or even have food delivered to them in the Law Building from a variety of restaurants.
A wide variety of housing options are available to students. Many students choose to live right across the street from the Law College in the Owen Graduate Hall, which has a newly transformed dining area with made-to-order food stations and outdoor seating. There are many other great options for both on- and off-campus housing.
Graduate Programs/Areas of Specialization
MSU Law offers the following graduate programs for lawyers (LLM) and non-lawyers (MJ):
- LLM and MJ in the American Legal System
- LLM and MJ in Intellectual Property and Communications Law
- Online LLM and MJ in Global Food Law
- Legal English for Academic Preparation (LEAP) ESL Bridge Program
The LEAP program is a one-of-a-kind joint program with MSU’s English Language Center, giving future law students the English training they need to excel in their legal studies. This joint program combines traditional ESL training in the first stage with legal English and prelaw courses in the second stage. This unique approach, built upon the strengths of both MSU and MSU Law, gives students an edge by providing them with training they would not receive elsewhere.
For information about these programs, please visit the MSU Law LLM website, or contact
MSU Law Office of Graduate and International Programs
Student Services and Organizations
MSU Law has a wide variety of student organizations that serve a diverse student population. These groups give students a range of social, educational, community service, and networking opportunities. Graduate student programming is led by the LLM and MJ Student Association.
Students in the graduate programs at MSU Law benefit from the strong student services available to them through the MSU Law-MSU affiliation. Not only does MSU Law have an in-house office to serve international and graduate students, but MSU has its own Office of International Students and Scholars, counseling services, and other resources, as well as hundreds of student groups that law students can join.
This unique mix of MSU Law and MSU services gives MSU Law students the best resources available, while also making sure all students receive personalized attention as part of a small, private law college.
Our graduate students benefit from a host of career development opportunities, including personal consultations with Career Services staff, résumé-writing workshops, and mock interviews. Many students participate in shadowing, externship, and other career development opportunities. The Career Services Office also hosts a professional etiquette dinner and other events aimed at preparing students for the legal workforce. The Office of Graduate and International Programs helps students reach out to alumni working abroad.
MSU Law graduates fondly remember their experiences at the Law College and cherish their lifelong place in the Spartan family. Many recent graduates consider their time at MSU Law life-changing, both personally and professionally.