University News

WNE School of Law Offers Unique Three-Week Mini-Law Program for the Community

Published: March 15, 2024 | Categories: All News, Law
WNE School of Law

Western New England University School of Law will again open its doors to the community with a three-week program focused on demystifying the law. The Mini-Law School will be held on March 26, April 2, and April 9, 2024, at Western New England University, 1215 Wilbraham Road, Springfield, MA. The program will provide practical knowledge to assist non-lawyers in gaining an understanding of areas of the law that are relevant to their everyday lives. Each class will be taught by Law School faculty and moderated by retired Judge Kenneth Neiman.

Blending theory and practice, the classes will focus on Constitutional law, digital literacy, and labor law. The program is free and open to the public. Registration is required at:

Tuesday, 3/26/24Connections between Fundamental Rights and Democratic Values of Pluralism and Citizenship, with Professor Jennifer Levi. Professor Levi will explore case studies of bans on medical care for transgender adolescents and laws recognizing "fetal personhood" as a framework for unpacking core principles of Constitutional Law. The discussion in this session of mini-law school will be wide-ranging and touch on legal doctrines including equal protection and due process as well as hot contemporary topics including restrictions on medical care, access to abortion and reproductive technologies, and criminalization of marginalized families.

Tuesday, 4/02/24 – Digital Literacy: Avoiding Misinformation through Accurate or Reliable Research, with Associate Dean for Library and Information Resources, Nicole Belbin. In an era of misinformation, especially during an election year, it is crucial for individuals to make informed decisions based on reliable data and diverse perspectives. This session will familiarize participants with the tools and strategies to identify credible sources and evaluate information for reliability and bias, enabling people to make informed decisions.

Tuesday, 4/09/24 – Labor Rights, Gig Work, & Employee Voice - Contemporary Issues in the Law of the Workplace, with Professor Harris Freeman. This session will explore labor rights and the challenges of defining and regulating employee rights, activities, and speech in varied and contemporary work environments.

The Mini-Law School is directed by Beth D. Cohen, Professor of Law, and Nicole Belbin, Associate Dean for Library and Information Resources. In addition to the esteemed School of Law faculty, the program is fortunate to have the Honorable Kenneth Neiman serve as the "Dean" of the Mini-Law School.

"After three weeks, you won't be a lawyer," Cohen said, "but you will be able to better understand laws that have an effect on your life. And unlike traditional law school, there are no tests or homework."

"Individuals interested in becoming better informed and engaging in stimulating dialogue will find this program rewarding," Belbin said. "No legal knowledge is necessary, just a curious mind."