Although funds are provided by the School of Law to support activities, all organizations are exclusively student-run. Most groups hold meetings and functions during a regularly scheduled activities period or in the early evening.
The Alliance For Israel (AFI) is a student organization dedicated to promoting recognition and respect among the student body at NUSL of Israel’s right to exist as a sovereign, Jewish, and democratic state and as a member of the international community. AFI seeks to educate the NUSL community about the diverse culture and politics of Israel through a wide variety of informational, advocacy, and cultural events. AFI will also explore international law as it relates to Israel. Representing a wide-range of perspectives, AFI is a group open to students who are passionate and/or interested to know more about Israel and Zionism.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of NUSL is the Northeastern University chapter of the ACLU Massachusetts, which works to extend rights to segments of our population that have traditionally been denied their rights, including Native Americans and other people of color; lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people; women; mental-health patients; prisoners; people with disabilities; and the poor. If the rights of society’s most vulnerable members are denied, everybody’s rights are imperiled. The ACLU of NUSL brings films and speakers to discuss constitutional freedoms, helps NU law students get involved in ongoing legal and congressional civil liberties battles, and brings together the Boston-area civil liberties community.
The Asian Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA) is an organization that represents South Asian, Pacific Asian, Southeast Asian and East Asian law school students at NUSL. In addition to providing a social and academic support network for Asian American students at the law school, the group is active in both community and campus issues. APALSA works closely with the administration, and is represented on the Admissions Committee and the Committee Against Institutional Racism. Throughout the year, APALSA hosts various social activities for both NUSL students and other Asian-Pacific law students.
The Black Law Students Association’s (BLSA) purpose is threefold: to identify, articulate and promote the needs of black students at Northeastern University School of Law. In particular, BLSA’s focus is on areas of internal academic support, interaction through various community outreach programs, social support and validation within and outside of the university setting. The group is also actively affiliated with the national BLSA.
Business Interests Group (BIG) is a student organization dedicated to educating law students about what it means to practice law in the business, corporate, and financial worlds. The group has a threefold mission: learning about transactional work, networking, and representing our interests on campus. The organization works with outside resources, linking current students to mentors and networking opportunities. BIG also creates an NUSL social network for students and works closely with administration to ensure that corporate law classes, co-op opportunities and other advantages are made available to business minded law students.
The Cooperative Income Sharing Program (CISP) is a student-run, student-funded program that makes grants to students choosing unpaid or underpaid public interest legal work as a part of their co-op experience. CISP also sells all official NUSL clothing and merchandise. And, it’s a fun place to do Work-Study or volunteer by helping out in the used bookstore or cafe.
The Family Law and Juvenile Justice Society (FLJJS) is an organization of law students who are interested in a wide array of family law issues including, but not limited to, divorce, custody, adoption, reproductive technology law, juvenile justice, domestic violence, elder issues, same sex marriage implications, and end of life care. The goals of the FLS are to: (1) Educate NUSL students on a broad spectrum of family law issues by bringing leading family law practitioners to speak on campus; (2) Promote access to careers in family law by developing more co-op opportunities in legal service agencies, government organizations, boutique family law firms, and family law departments of medium-to-large size firms; (3) Advocate to the curriculum committee for more diverse course offerings in family law; and (4) Build relationships in the community with professionals that collaborate with family law lawyers in order to provide holistic services to clients.
The Federalist Society sponsors guest speakers and events to foster dialogue and debate on legal issues. The Federalist Society believes law schools and the legal profession are currently strongly dominated by a form of orthodox liberal ideology that advocates a centralized and uniform society. While some members of the academic community have dissented from these views, by and large they are taught simultaneously with (and indeed as if they were) the law. The Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies is a group of conservatives and libertarians interested in the current state of the legal order. It is founded on the principles that the state exists to preserve freedom, that the separation of governmental powers is central to our Constitution, and that it is emphatically the province and duty of the judiciary to say what the law is, not what it should be. The Society seeks both to promote an awareness of these principles and to further their application through its activities.
The Health Law Society of NUSL is a student group committed to raising the visibility of health law at Northeastern and our broader community, with a particular emphasis on traditional public health concerns. The Society endeavors to support its mission through inviting practitioners and academics to present on current health topics; building relationships between health care students and law students; providing resources to law students interested in learning more about health law topics; supporting law students enrolled or interested in the JD/MPH Program; sponsoring student participation in Health Law Moot Court competitions and attendance at health related conferences.
The Human Rights Caucus was founded by Northeastern University School of Law students on December 10, 2008, the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Human Rights Caucus serves as the hub for human rights issues not currently addressed by other student organizations, reinforces the ongoing work of existing student groups through the utilization of a legal human rights framework, and connects law students to individuals/groups conducting current human rights work. Our mission is to connect NUSL students interested in human rights issues, to educate ourselves and others about domestic and international legal human rights frameworks, and to ensure that law students' exposure to human rights is not limited to academic discussions, but is practiced in our present internships and other social justice advocacy. Find us on Facebook.
Intellectual Property Society is comprised of students interested in intellectual property law and its role in our society. In addition to holding meetings several times a year, the society invites speakers to discuss cutting-edge intellectual property issues and careers in intellectual property. The society also participates in an Intellectual Property Alumni/ae Speaker Series, which is generally hosted by an area law firm and in which students, graduates and friends hear a substantive presentation and have the opportunity to mingle.
International Law Society (ILS) is an association of law students, faculty and staff who have an interest in international law and issues as they relate to the academic, professional and cooperative education spheres. In addition to fostering discussion on related issues, ILS is also a support group for international students at the law school. ILS coordinates a variety of activities, including brown bag lunch discussions, lectures and presentations on international co-ops, and promotes study abroad programs, participation in international law conferences and international employment opportunities.
Jewish Law Students Association (JLSA) is a cultural, social, educational and religious organization that reflects the varied interests of the Jewish student community of Northeastern University School of Law. Our annual events include the Boston Jewish Film Festival, Shabbat potluck dinners at students’ apartments, and a popular community-wide Passover Seder. All events are open to the NUSL community.
The Latin American Law Students Association (LaLSA) serves as a support system for its membership, as a forum for students to voice their concerns and as a means to promote the needs and goals of Latino/a law students at Northeastern University, as well as in the surrounding community, region and nation.
The National Lawyers Guild (NLG) student chapter has been active since 1974. Northeastern student Guild members work closely with NLG attorneys: volunteering as facilitators for street law clinics, legal observers at demonstrations and civil disobedience actions, working on the Guild’s Immigrant Detainee Project and other ongoing campaigns. The National Lawyers Guild was formed in 1937 as the first non-segregated national association of legal workers. Today, it includes lawyers, law students, legal workers and jailhouse lawyers who seek to use the law "in the service of the people, to the end that human rights shall be regarded as more sacred than property interests." see also Northeastern United Radical Front
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The Northeastern Employment and Labor Law Society (NELLA) promotes the field of labor and employment law as a career option. The group also explores the current efforts of plaintiff-side employment lawyers and union-side labor lawyers. Activities have included a roundtable discussion on labor/employment law, activism with attorneys from the community, and the screening of movies such as Live Nude Girls Unite!, and Bread and Roses.
Northeastern Environmental Law Society (NELS) is an organization dedicated to promoting awareness about environmental concerns, issues, and problems within the legal community. Our goals are to bridge the communication and information gap between the scientific and political/legal communities and to enhance the law school experience for students interested in environmental issues and environmental justice confronting Boston, Massachusetts and other regions. NELS has brought in several notable speakers, held fundraising events, and has been actively involved in volunteer projects with local environmental justice groups. NELS’s events are often co-sponsored with other organizations on campus and are open to law students as well as the entire community.
The Northeastern University Law Journal emphasizes the practical application of the law and exploring the ways by which the experience of practicing law can educate. By asking practitioners to analyze and write about their own experiences, the Journal accomplishes two educational functions for the legal community. First it informs the legal community about the range of practical issues which confront practitioners in a particular field, and compares the variety of manners by which these issues are resolved. Second it places these issues in legal context by analyzing the legal scholarship and relating the academic analysis to the practical application.
The Queer Caucus (QC) is comprised of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students, faculty and staff, and their allies. It is one of the school’s most visible and active student groups. Through its many activities, including hosting dinner discussion groups, sending students to regional events sponsored by organizations such as the Human Rights Campaign and the Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders, and organizing educational programs about queer issues, the group provides support and resources for the entire community.
Queers United in Radical Rethinking (QUiRR) is a non-hierarchical collective of queer and trans students and allies committed to organizing for social and economic justice. We see struggles for queer and trans liberation as inextricably linked with struggles to end all forms of systemic oppression. We are committed to deconstructing the ways in which racism, classism, cis/hetero/sexism, colonialism, capitalism and neoliberalism inform mainstream LGBt organizing, and we seek to engage in work that transcends the issues and experiences traditionally privileged in mainstream LGBt movements. We seek to center the experiences of queer people of color, working class queer people, undocumented queer people, incarcerated queer people and others who are situated at the intersections of multiple forms of oppression. We work in solidarity with global and local movements for racial and economic justice, including prison abolition, Palestinian self-determination, migrant justice, access to affordable housing and healthcare, anti-police brutality, militarism, gentrification and the criminalization of poverty. Through political education and action, creative work and skill sharing we collaborate with other student and community groups that share an anti-oppression analysis and commitment to an intersectional approach to organizing.
As an advocacy group, Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is committed to a core set of principles to which it expects its members to adhere. SJP believes that while the Palestinian people must ultimately be able to decide their future in Palestine, certain key principles, grounded in international law, human rights, and basic standards of justice, are fundamental to a just resolution of the plight of the Palestinians. These include the full decolonization of all illegally held Palestinian lands, the end of the Israeli occupation of the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem. Furthermore, we believe in a just and fair exercising of the Palestinian right of return and repatriation of Palestinian refugees, as well as an end to the Israeli system of discrimination against the indigenous Palestinian population.
Just as SJP condemns the discrimination underlying the policies and laws of the state of Israel, SJP rejects and condemns any form of hatred or discrimination against any religious, racial, or ethnic group. SJP is committed to overcoming anti-Semitic sentiments towards both Arabs and Jews in the Boston community. Rooting its strength in the diversity of its membership, SJP welcomes individuals of all ethnic and religious backgrounds to join in solidarity with the struggle for justice in Palestine.
Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP) is an international grassroots network of students who are concerned about the impact drug abuse has on our communities, but who also know that the War on Drugs is failing our generation and our society. It is a student organization that pushes for sensible policies to achieve a safer and more just future, while fighting back against counterproductive, overly punitive policies.
The South Asian Law Students Association (SALSA)
The Student Bar Association (SBA), affiliated with the Law Student Division of the American Bar Association (ABA), is the elected, representative body for NUSL students. It informs and encourages student participation in the activities of the ABA, as well as serving as a forum for communication between NUSL students and the administration. In addition to representing the interests of the student body, the SBA also sponsors numerous social, recreational, educational, and charitable events throughout the year. Common events include a bi-weekly social event ("Bar Review"), seasonal gatherings (e.g., the spring Barrister’s Ball and fall Halloween Party), fundraisers for local charities, and a tax-assistance program to help the elderly complete their tax forms.
The Women’s Law Caucus exists to enable women law students to share their legal aspirations and personal and academic experiences in law school, while providing support to one another and serving as a social network. The group was extremely active this year with its "Brown Bag Lunch Series," which invited students and faculty to discussions on various topics that were opened by a lecture from an invited faculty member. In addition, the Women’s Law Caucus promoted awareness of domestic violence and sponsored a "Shop and Swap."