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WNEU School of Law Adds Race-related Coursework Requirement for Graduation

SPRINGFIELD — In an effort to incorporate antiracism education and training into the student experience, Western New England University (WNEU) School of Law has added a new Antiracism and Cultural Competency (ARCC) graduation requirement beginning with incoming students in the fall of 2022.

This requirement offers students more than a dozen options from substantive courses relating to legal history, structural inequality, intersectionality, discrimination, civil rights, and theories of subordination, focusing on cultural context and cultural competency. The list of eligible courses includes “Race, Racism, & the Law,” “Business Law from an Antiracist Perspective,” “Gender & the Law,” “Diversity & Inclusion in the Legal Profession,” and many others.

“Western New England University School of Law has a long and proud history of incorporating social justice and antiracism into the education we offer. We are delighted to be in the vanguard of law schools formalizing that commitment in this way, which teaches our students about key areas of the law, but also prepares them well for the lawyering of today and tomorrow,” said School of Law Dean Sudha Setty. “Further, a cornerstone of our mission is the belief that the study of law must embrace the notion that different beliefs, backgrounds, and opinions are critical components of a well-rounded learning environment.”

WNEU School of Law currently offers a wide range of elective courses, experiential learning opportunities, engagement opportunities through its Center for Social Justice, pro bono opportunities, student organizations, and vibrant speaker series that serve to broaden students’ knowledge on legal issues related to racial justice, as well as diversity, equity, and inclusion.

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