Admitted Students to Graduate Programs in the American Legal System

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  • Academics

    Advising

    Trying to figure out which courses to take can be both confusing and frustrating because there are so many options, but limited time and available credits within the program.

    Connecting with your advisor is critical. After admission, you’ll virtually or personally meet with your advisor, Carrie Feeheley, to discuss your course options for the following Fall and Spring. Carrie is an attorney and the Director of the Office of Graduate and International Programs. She has been advising LL.M. and M.J. students for almost ten years, and is well-versed in the course options, as well as student visa enrollment requirements. Questions about your options or your program? E-mail her at feehelec@law.msu.edu or schedule a time to chat with her.

    Once the courses are open for registration, Carrie will guide you through the registration process and let you know how to get your books, first assignments and other materials so that you come to the first class prepared.

    Curriculum

    Students are required to successfully complete a total of 24 credits for this program. Required courses include:

    Personalize your education or follow a standardized program. Either way, you’ll be guided by an advisor and by faculty focused on your area(s) of interest to make sure your program brings you the most benefit possible.

    Required courses include:

    Students must complete their degree in no more than two years.

    Course offerings may vary from year to year.

  • Admitted Student Timeline

    Students may start the program in either Fall (August) or Spring (January). Fall matriculation is recommended, so that students can join MSU Law’s J.D. students for their Immersion Week (Orientation) activities, which include the Foundations of Law course.

    Admitted Student Timeline

    Here are important dates and tasks for you to keep in mind after admission:

    For Students Beginning in Fall Semester

    March - May: Register for and attend a visit program for admitted candidates. Each visit program provides an outstanding opportunity to interact with faculty members, current students, staff, and potential classmates.

    March 1 – Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) due for students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and wish to have financial aid for Fall Semester. Students who complete the FAFSA may still get financial aid, but may find communication of their federal loans delayed. The Federal School Code for MSU Law is G02254. The FAFSA may be completed online: www.fafsa.ed.gov.

    April 1: Application deadline

    April-May: Work with an MSU Law academic advisor to register for Fall courses.

    May 1: I-20 or DS-2019 application and documentation due for visa processing (international students only)

    June 22: For students eligible for federal financial aid, this is the suggested deadline for completing a Direct Loan Stafford Loan Promissory Note (www.studentloans.gov) and, if needed, the GradPlus Promissory Note or other private, credit-based loan application. (The promissory notes may be completed after this date, but loan funds may not be credited to the student’s account by the fall billing date.)

    July/August: Purchase and read materials for Immersion Week and Graduate Student Orientation.

    July 1: Official Transcripts and Outstanding English test scores due

    July 18: First date eligible to enter the country on DS-2019 or I-20 (international students only)
    Early August: Check First Assignments web page to find out your first reading and other assignments, purchase books, and prepare readings for the first day of class.

    August 16: Required International Student Orientation begins on campus (exempt: Canadian International Students, for whom this is optional)

    August 18: Required International Student Orientation (all international students, including Canadians)

    August 28: Classes Begin

    December 11- December 20: Final examinations

    For Students Beginning in Spring Semester

    October - December: Register for and attend a visit program for admitted candidates. Each visit program provides an outstanding opportunity to interact with faculty members, current students, staff, and potential classmates.

    October 1 – Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) due for students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and wish to have financial aid for Fall Semester. Students who complete the FAFSA may still get financial aid, but may find communication of their federal loans delayed. The Federal School Code for MSU Law is G02254. The FAFSA may be completed online: www.fafsa.ed.gov .

    October 10: For students eligible for federal financial aid, this is the suggested deadline for completing a Direct Loan Stafford Loan Promissory Note (www.studentloans.gov) and, if needed, the GradPlus Promissory Note or other private, credit-based loan application. (The promissory notes may be completed after this date, but loan funds may not be credited to the student’s account by the fall billing date.)

    November 1: Application deadline

    October/November: Work with an MSU Law academic advisor to register for Spring courses.

    December: Purchase and read materials for Graduate Student Orientation.

    December: Check First Assignments web page to find out your first reading and other assignments, purchase books, and prepare readings for the first day of class.

    December 1: I-20 or DS-2019 application and documentation due for visa processing (international students only)

    December 7: First date eligible to enter the country on DS-2019 or I-20 (international students only)

    December 15: Official Transcripts and Outstanding English test scores due

    January 4: Required International Student Orientation begins on campus

    January 8: Classes Begin

    April 27 – May 9: Final examinations

  • Your Student Visa

    If you’re an international student, now that you’re admitted, you’ll need to get your student visa if you’re not otherwise eligible to study in the United States.

    Our SEVIS and Admissions Coordinator, Lisa Willson, is here to guide you through all the necessary steps to get your student visa. You will be submitting documentation to her via our student portal, and she will follow up with you to let you know what she needs to complete your I-20. It’s critical to be in touch with Lisa often so that you keep the process on track and get here in time for classes to begin.

    Learn more about the visa process.

  • Orientation

    Your legal education as a new, first-year law student at MSU begins with Immersion Week, a mandatory component of the program that is designed to help you transition to being a successful law student in the United States. You’ll also attend a mandatory international student orientation.

    Immersion Week includes your first required course, Foundations of Law, a commitment to professionalism program, and multiple opportunities to meet and interact with faculty members and classmates.

    International Student Orientation begins August 16.

    Immersion Week 2017 begins August 21.

    Highlights of Immersion Week include:

    • Foundations of Law is a one-credit hour course taught during Immersion Week. The course provides a common foundation for students from a wide variety of academic majors. There will be assigned readings for Foundations of Law that incoming students must read prior to Immersion Week.
    • Professionalism in Action Program features a discussion about legal ethics, with remarks delivered by practicing attorneys and judges.
    • Lunch and other events will be hosted to introduce you to faculty members, staff, and your classmates.
    • Presentations will be given by the MSU Law Career Services staff.
  • Next Steps

    You’ve been admitted. Congratulations!

    Now what? There’s a lot to do to prepare for your life in East Lansing.

    Here are the critical next steps you need to take to make sure that you’re ready to begin your classes.

    • Get your student visa (link to visa info) if you’re an international student.
    • Set up your MSU netID to access your StuInfo account, msu email, and more

      After admission, you received an email from the Office of Graduate and International Programs (OGIP) that included your PID (personal ID number starting with the letter “A”), PAN (personal access number), and instructions to activate your MSU NetID.  Your NetID—an identifier automatically generated from your name—comes before “@msu.edu” in your MSU e-mail address.

      Your MSU e-mail and NetID are very important, as they serve as your communication link to MSU Law. They also serve as passcodes for you to access resources only available to MSU students. Check your MSU e-mail regularly for important academic information from the Office of the Registrar and the Office of Student Engagement, as well as daily announcements from the Events Office and the Office of Graduate and International Programs.

      Use your MSU e-mail account to send messages to MSU Law faculty and staff. All official communication regarding classes, billing, graduation, and other matters must be from your MSU account.

      Do not set up your MSU e-mail account to automatically forward to another account (e.g. Gmail or Yahoo! Mail), as important e-mails may be filtered or discarded as spam or junk mail.

    • Figure out where you’re going to live.
    • Make Travel Arrangements

      Lansing has a local airport, the Capital City Airport (LAN). If you choose to fly directly to Lansing, you will need to take a taxi from the airport to East Lansing, which should cost roughly between $30-50 dollars for a one-way trip. It is generally expected that you tip taxi drivers at a rate of 10%.

      Many students choose to fly into the Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW), and take the Michigan Flyer bus (www.michiganflyer.com) from the airport to downtown East Lansing. You will need to take a taxi or public transportation from the drop-off point outside the East Lansing Marriott to your destination in East Lansing/Lansing.

    • Figure out how you’ll get around East Lansing

      One of the easiest ways to get to and from campus is by riding the city buses operated by CATA, which stop right next to the Law College building. Easily plan your route by entering your home address and the Law College as your destination.
      MSU’s main CATA boarding center and transfer point—which is just steps away from the Law College—is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The center has bus schedules and maps, indoor seating, a community policing office, convenience store, public restrooms, vending machines, an ATM, and more.

      Contact CATA at 517-394-1000 if you have questions about riding the bus or would like to purchase a bus pass.

      Parking on Campus
      If you choose to drive on campus, you need to make parking arrangements ahead of time to avoid being ticketed. The MSU Parking Office has information on parking options. Also review MSU’s student parking and driving regulations (PDF).

    • Purchase your books and complete your first assignments.

      Your law school assignments begin before you start classes. Professors, including those for courses during your orientation, will assign readings to you.

      Your first assignments will be posted about a month before your classes begin. Find out the books you need and the first readings you need to complete (before the first class).

      Most students purchase their books through online vendors. Books are also available at several campus-area bookstores, including the book store in the basement of the International Center at MSU, about two blocks from the Law College.