An understanding of criminal justice is fundamental to any lawyer’s education. At the University of Virginia, the nation’s leading criminal law faculty offer an in-depth array of courses on both the substantive criteria of guilt or innocence and the procedures used in the arrest, prosecution and punishment of offenders. On topics ranging from the reliability of eyewitness identifications to the consequences of plea bargaining, Virginia’s faculty are looking at the criminal justice system with fresh eyes and considering how to make a more just society.
Virginia students do not study criminal law only from a distance. They also enroll in clinics that offer hands-on involvement in juvenile justice, criminal prosecution or defense, and innocence cases. The Law School supplements its curriculum with a wide range of extracurricular activities dedicated to criminal law, including a journal devoted to criminal law and an active innocence group.
Collectively, these experiences lead Virginia graduates to coveted positions in the U.S. Department of Justice Honors Program, in U.S. attorneys’ offices, and in district attorney and defense offices across the country.