“We continue the fight for justice and equity because we must. Together we must use the law unremittingly to achieve a greater measure of justice in our own lifetimes, and we must raise an army of new lawyers to wage legal warfare against racial injustice.”Dean Craig M. Boise, Opening Remarks,
Annual College of Law Alumni of Color Reception, Sept. 25, 2020.
A Statement on Diversity & Inclusion by Dean Craig M. Boise
|Syracuse University and the College of Law are committed to fostering a campus community that is free from discrimination and that celebrates the diversity of its community members within a supportive and inclusive learning environment. This commitment is rooted in the belief that multiple points of view and different life experiences, ethnicities, cultures, and belief systems are essential to academic excellence.|
Our goal is that diversity be a core value not just in vision but in practice. At the College of Law, students join a community motivated by the values of respect and inclusion. By embracing the diversity of our community, we positively enrich our students’ learning experience. We expect that law school will challenge belief systems and preconceptions, and we encourage our students to be open to this challenge.
The ability to recognize and genuinely appreciate our individual differences in matters like gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, nationality, disability, and age—among many others—allows us to learn and grow from the unique gifts that others bring to the College of Law. More often than not, we realize that we share remarkably similar values and aspirations for our lives.
At the College of Law, we want our students not only to embrace diversity, we want them to experience inclusion—to know what it means to belong. For with a sense of belonging, our students are able to help each other power through the challenges of law school and achieve their potential for greatness, knowing they are supported in their endeavors by their peers. This is what we at Syracuse mean when we speak of being part of the “Orange Nation.”
The rule of law is fundamental to maintaining pluralistic, democratic, and just societies and, here, that notion is strongly reinforced. Students also learn that in practice they must advocate for individuals or communities for which the law, due process, and protections have not been applied fairly or equally, whether as a result of systemic racism or other injustices. They are challenged to answer the question, “How must the world change in order for it to be more fair, equitable, and just, and how might I use my legal education to effect that change?”
As students move from law school into their careers, they will journey through various workplace cultures and represent a wide variety of client needs and interests. In an ever-changing and interconnected world, we pledge to prepare our students for the challenges and the opportunities of cross-cultural representation and to refine awareness and skills that will enhance their capacity to develop respectful relationships and effective communications styles for a successful career.
The College of Law’s Inclusion Council affirms my commitment to creating a campus that is not only free from discrimination but that also ensures we build on our individual and collective strengths, as a dimension of academic excellence.
The Council—comprised of College of Law faculty, staff, and students—is charged with identifying programs, resources, and activities that reinforce diversity and inclusion. The work of the Council guides diversity and inclusion programming for Orientation Week, Diversity Week, faculty and staff training, and many other events and initiatives.
Follow the Council’s work on these pages, and please plan to get involved. We need you!
I am proud of the progress we have made toward greater diversity and deeper inclusiveness in our law school, but I recognize there is still much work to be done. At Syracuse, we stand together—and learn together—as one, for the greater good, to understand and uphold the law, to pursue truth and justice for all, and to use the power of the law to improve our world.
Craig M. Boise
Dean & Professor of Law
Latinix Hispanic Heritage Month 2022
Black History Month 2022
Diversity & Inclusion at the College of Law
CLASS PROFILE 2022-2023*
Total Number of Incoming Students: 239
- Residential Program Class of 2025: 143
- JDinteractive Class of 2026: 95
- Master of Laws Class of 2023: 16
- Doctor of Juridical Science (S.J.D.): 3
- Two-Year J.D.: 2
J.D. Class Profile
- Black, Indigenous, and People of Color: 75
- Gender: 133 women/ 99 men / 6 non-binary or prefer not to answer
- Identifying as LGBTQ+: 32
- First-Generation Students: 67
- Active Duty/Veterans: 25
- States Represented: 33, including D.C.
- Countries Represented: 9
*Data as of Aug. 31, 2022
Accommodations & Accessibility
The College of Law is devoted to the inclusion and success of students with disabilities and those in need of special accommodations. To learn more, visit the Accommodations & Accessibility webpage or the Syracuse University Office of Disability Services, or contact Annette Jenner-Matthews, Senior Counselor.
Starting in 2019, the College of Law entered into 3+3 agreements with three Atlanta-based HBCU institutions: Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College, and Spelman College. The 3+3 program at these and other colleges* allows students to finish the bachelor’s and juris doctor degrees in an accelerated format by completing all coursework required for the undergraduate major in three years and finishing their degree during their first year of law school at Syracuse.
“This is one of the ways we can address the legal profession’s need for more diversity among the ranks of lawyers,” says Dean Craig M. Boise. “This program also includes sessions and workshops that assist students in the law school admissions process.”
Contact the Admissions Office for specific information on applying as a 3+3 candidate.
The College of Law also has 3+3 agreements with Alfred University, Le Moyne College, Nazareth College, Rochester Institute of Technology, St. John Fisher College, Syracuse University’s Whitman School of Management.
Law and Sexuality
Asian Americans & the Law
Investigating and Reopening Civil Rights Murder Cases
Criminal Justice Reform
|Elder Law |
International Human Rights Seminar
Political Advocacy in Disability Rights
Constitutional Civil Rights Litigation
Constitutional Law II: Bill of Rights
Refugee and Asylum Law Seminar
Race and the Law
International Human Rights and Comparative Disability Law Seminar
Advanced Interdisciplinary Disability Law Seminar
Elder Law Clinic
Low Income Taxpayer Clinic
Disability Rights Clinic
Social and Economic Justice in South Africa
Veterans Legal Clinic
Other Related Academic Programs
Degree & Certificate Programs
- J.D./Master of Science in Cultural Foundations of Education with an Optional Certificate in Disability Studies
- Disability Law and Policy Curricular Program
- Family Law and Social Policy Curricular Program
Centers & Institutes
- Burton Blatt Institute
- Disability Law and Policy Program
- Syracuse University Intelligence Community Center for Academic Excellence (a program to diversify the US intelligence workforce, led by the Institute for Security Policy and Law)
Clinical, Pro Bono, & Other Experiential Programs
- Betty and Michael D. Wohl Veterans Legal Clinic
- Cold Case Justice Initiative
- Disability Rights Clinic
- Pro Bono Programs
|Asian-Pacific American Law Student Association|
Black Law Students Association (BLSA)
Catholic Law Students Association
Disability Law Society
Impunity Watch News
International Law Society (works with Catholic Charities on refugee services)
|Italian American Bar Association|
Jewish Law Students Association
Korean Law Students Association
Latin American Law Students Association (LALSA)
South Asian Law Students
Syracuse University is just minutes from the heartland of Onondaga Nation, the fire keepers of the Haudenosaunee, the indigenous peoples on whose ancestral land the University now stands.
The University is invested in a relationship with our Native American neighbors that promotes cross-cultural dialogue, research opportunities, and stronger appreciation for Native American leadership, innovation, and contribution.
SULAA Inclusion Network The mission of the SULAA Inclusion Network is to promote professional and personal friendship, association, and affiliation among alumni, to support future generations of College of Law students, and to strengthen the institution, by:
- Celebrating the College of Law’s diverse population,
- Encouraging, facilitating the creation of, and engaging identity-based subgroups of the Network,
- Providing learning opportunities, dialogues, and experiences that support equality,
- Attending and participating in College of Law and SU events,
- Providing financial support to advance the College of Law’s mission to educate and support students, and
- Being active members of SULAA.
Alumni of Color Awards
The Syracuse University College of Law Alumni of Color Awards are presented on behalf of the SULAA Inclusion Network and the College of Law to celebrate the distinguished achievements in any field of endeavor by living members of the Syracuse law family—alumni, current and former faculty and staff, students, parents and friends–for service to the College of Law, the legal profession, Syracuse University, or the world at large.
Alumni of Color Award Recipients 2022
Asian Pacific Islander Legacy of Excellence Award: Tanuja Dehne L’98
BLSA William Herbert Johnson Legacy Award: Tonastacia (Staci) Dennis-Taylor L’14
Jose Bahamonde-Gonzalez L’92 Legacy Award: Scott A. de la Vega L’94
Alumni of Color Award Recipients 2021
BLSA Legacy Award : The Hon. Rodney Thompson L’93
LALAA Legacy Award: The Hon. Ramon Rivera L’94
Inaugural Asian Pacific Islander Legacy of Excellence Award: Seuk Joon Lee L’99
Alumni of Color Award Recipients 2020
Syracuse University is fully committed to fostering a diverse, inclusive and respectful campus community, not only in vision but in practice. Our commitment to diversity and inclusion is rooted in the belief that multiple points of view, life experiences, ethnicities, cultures and belief systems are essential to academic excellence.
- A Diverse Campus Community
- Diversity and Inclusion Commitments
- Campus Commitments to Diversity and Inclusion (includes progress of Student Concerns and Recommendations: #NotAgainSU, International Students, Jewish Students)
- Center for Disability Resources
- Disability Cultural Center
- LGBT Resource Center
- Office of Multicultural Advancement
- Office of Multicultural Affairs
- Office of Veterans and Military Affairs
- Syracuse University Code of Student Conduct
- Bias Incident Response
- Student Rights and Responsibilities Document
Non-Discrimination Statement—Students have the right not to be discriminated against by any agent or organization of Syracuse University for reasons of being members of a protected category, including; creed, ethnicity, citizenship, sexual orientation, reproductive health decisions, national origin, sex, gender, pregnancy, disability, marital status, political or social affiliation, age, race, color, veteran status, military status, religion, sexual orientation, domestic violence status, genetic information, gender identity, gender expression or perceived gender. Students have the responsibility not to discriminate against others.
More Resources for Faculty, Staff, & Students
- Office of the University Ombuds—Provides faculty, staff and graduate students with an independent resource to address concerns
- “Silent Witness” Anonymous Reporting System—Use Silent Witness if you know of a crime that has occurred or is occurring on campus and you want to report it anonymously.
- Equal Opportunity, Inclusion, and Resolution Services—This office assists students, faculty, staff, and others on discrimination incidents, sexual misconduct incidents, disability accommodations, remediation of access barrier concerns, staff and faculty training and development
- Harassment and Discrimination Prevention Training
- University Complaint Process
- Faculty and Staff Accommodations
- Committee on Diversity and Inclusion
- Task Force on Racial Injustice and Police Reform
- Elder Law & Special Needs Section
- Women In Law Section