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Student addresses judges

Hands-On Learning

Practical Training

About Practical Training

Legal education goes beyond the classroom and a theoretical knowledge of the law. St. Thomas Law’s practical training opportunities allow students to develop professional relationships, learn through hands-on experiences and build their resumes.

We were proud to be ranked #2 in the nation for practical training in 2024 by The National Jurist. In fact, St. Thomas Law has been ranked among the top three law schools in this category since 2014.

We provide students with outlets to grow their skills and apply their legal knowledge in our 10 legal clinics and a robust legal externship program. Our practical training offerings are further enhanced by an award-winning Mentor Externship Program.

A National Leader in Practical Training

St. Thomas Law’s practical training opportunities allow students to learn through experiences, build their resumes and develop professional relationships. The school was ranked #2 in the nation for practical training in 2024 by The National Jurist.

Criminal defense clinic discuss cases

Legal Clinics

Legal clinics offer law students the opportunity to tackle legal issues and work with clients while working alongside faculty experts.

Legal Clinics
Alumna Esha Syal headshot

Legal Externships

Off-campus legal externships provide hands-on professional experience and accelerate a student’s substantive understanding of the law.

Legal Externships

A Mentor for Every Law Student

St. Thomas Law’s award-winning Mentor Externship Program pairs you, each year of law school, with a lawyer or judge who will help you gain real-world experience, develop relationships and navigate the legal field. The program combines opportunities in the field with thoughtful reflection to give each student a personal view of the legal profession.

Quick Facts

For Practical Training
Lawyers and Judges who Serve as Mentors
Legal Clinics
Students with awards at moot court competition

Real-World Practice

Moot Court and Trial Advocacy Competitions

St. Thomas law students annually participate in several national moot court, trial advocacy and negotiations competitions. These programs provide 2L and 3L students an opportunity to hone their written and oral advocacy skills, which are integral to the real-world practice of law.

Law Journals

Sharpen your legal research and writing skills in one of two journals: the University of St. Thomas Law Journal, the official academic journal of St. Thomas Law, or the University of St. Thomas Journal of Law and Public Policy, a publication focused on modern legal thought through analysis of contemporary public policy. Both bring to light discussions of morality and social justice.