WELCOME TO GGU LAW
Before GGU Law opened its YMCA night law school more than a hundred years ago, only
students who could attend school full-time were able to earn a law degree. Then and
now, GGU Law provides the opportunity for working individuals to pursue a legal education
characterized by diversity and innovation. Our part-time and full-time programs emphasize
academic rigor, ethics, and the real work of lawyering to support our students' post-graduate
success. Our graduates today succeed for the same reasons as their predecessors --
because they are immersed in a broad and challenging curriculum focused on the fundamentals
of legal theory, the skills vital to the practice of law, and the highest ethical
and professional standards.
GGU Law students bring unique backgrounds and life experiences to a learning environment
that is focused on combining academic rigor and skills-infused courses to develop
practice-ready graduates. The law school's dynamic, urban setting in the heart of
San Francisco's financial district fosters confident, savvy, and socially responsible
lawyers. Our location and program offer a rich array of opportunities to engage in
pro bono and other legal work under the supervision of practicing lawyers and the
guidance of thoughtful, generous, and experienced professors.
Indeed, our strong alumni network reflects the practice-rich education for which we
are so justly known. Our alumni are present in all areas of legal practice and the
judiciary, working in federal and state courts across the nation, as partners in large
and small firms, as in-house corporate counsel, in government agencies and non-profit
organizations, and in other arenas. Counted among them are state and federal judges,
members of Congress, renowned litigators, civil rights attorneys, and partners in
Today, institutions of higher education and law schools in particular are addressing
new questions about the value and form of education we offer. Changes in the nature
of the legal profession and the market are at the center of professional conversations,
public debate and media stories.
GGU Law is prepared to respond to our students' needs and the exciting changes taking
place in the profession. Doubtless, the practice-focused changes we have implemented
in the past two years -- 1L Electives, 1st STEP, 1L Coaching, Practice Intensive Courses
(PIC), and our collaboration with Educating Tomorrow's Lawyers -- are just a few of
the new programs engaging our students and future colleagues.
As Dean, I am most proud of the unique combination of caring and professionalism that
is the hallmark of GGU Law's faculty, staff, and students. GGU Law is a vibrant, intellectually
stimulating, and close-knit community. I encourage you to explore GGU Law online,
read our alumni magazine, and join our online communities (see social media links below) to learn more about
GGU Law -- our academic offerings, our values and culture, and our contributions to
the legal community and society.
Rachel Van Cleave
Dean & Professor of Law
Dean Van Cleave's Recent Articles:
- Viewpoint: Time to Abolish the 'Inquisitorial' Grand Jury System, The Recorder, Dec. 31, 2014.
- Learning From the Hope of Our Veterans, Daily Journal, Nov. 11, 2014.
- Want to Learn to Think Like A Lawyer? It's 'Elementary'! The Recorder, Oct. 16, 2014.
- Legal Education Takes Mentoring, Modeling and Trust, Daily Journal, Sept. 22, 2014.
- Empathetic advocacy: law schools and our veterans, Daily Journal, June 3, 2014.
- What Law Schools and Lawyers Can Do for Veterans, The Recorder, May 22, 2014.
- The Courage of Law Students, The Daily Journal, Jan. 13, 2014.