Elon University School of Law receives full accreditation from American Bar Association

Elon University School of Law has received full accreditation by the American Bar Association. The Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar approved Elon’s application June 10, at its meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Elon Law’s ABA full approval was achieved at the earliest possible date under accreditation guidelines, certifying that the school is in full compliance with all ABA standards for the approval of law schools. Elon achieved provisional approval in 2008, allowing its graduates to take bar examinations in all jurisdictions in the United States.

Elon University trustees approved the establishment of the law school in 2004, with the aim of developing an innovative approach to legal education that builds on the university’s national reputation for leadership education and engaged learning. Elon Law prepares students to be lawyers and leaders in the profession and in society with a rigorous core curriculum, an emphasis on ethics, and an active, experiential style of learning that integrates classroom teaching with field-based experiences.


Leo M. Lambert, president, Elon University
“The achievement of full ABA approval is an important milestone in the development of Elon Law as an institution known for excellence in innovative legal education and for cultivating leaders dedicated to serving society. I am exceedingly proud of the faculty, staff, students and our friends in Greensboro and the legal community who helped the law school reach this important stage in its development.”

David Gergen, chair, Elon Law national advisory board, CNN senior political analyst, and director, Center for Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School
“The ABA’s full approval of Elon Law gives me hope that legal education can rise to the challenge of doing more than teaching law students to be excellent lawyers, but also preparing them to take on the great challenges facing our society. Elon is at the forefront of a vital effort in legal education to ensure that law students succeed not only as excellent lawyers, but also skilled leaders dedicated to addressing regional, national and global challenges.”

George R. Johnson, Jr., dean, Elon University School of Law
“Achieving full approval at the earliest possible date is a resounding affirmation of the outstanding work of our faculty and staff. It also is a testament to the great work of our three classes of graduates and our current students. We also have been tremendously supported by the trustees of the university, the central administration, our advisory board, and the many community advocates who have helped to launch this law school. Indeed, we are very proud of this achievement, and we will continue to work to become that preeminent law school we all envision—that law school with a real difference.”

Since the inaugural class of Elon University School of Law was welcomed in 2006, in dedication ceremonies led by U.S. Supreme Court Justice (ret.) Sandra Day O’Connor, the school has developed several distinctive features. Students participate in a variety of field-placement programs, externship opportunities and service-learning courses, as well as moot courts, mock trials, law review and more than 20 other student organizations and activities. The three classes of Elon Law graduates each have contributed more than 20,000 hours of community service across three years of law study through the school’s clinics, programs, classes and student-led volunteer initiatives.


• Elon Law’s National Advisory Board is led by David Gergen, adviser to four U.S. presidents; and also includes two former North Carolina governors, three former chief justices of the North Carolina Supreme Court, a former president of the American Bar Association, a former U.S. ambassador, and numerous business and legal leaders.

The Leadership Program prepares students to tackle regional, national, and global challenges. The program emphasizes direct client engagement, teamwork, project management, exploration of the ethical foundations of law, and development of communication and interpersonal skills.

The Preceptor Program connects attorneys with students in a mentoring relationship that introduces students to business and professional dimensions of law. Preceptors invite students to accompany them to observe trials, client interviews, depositions and mediations, among other experiences. Students receive advice and guidance about the profession from the moment they enter law school.

• The law school includes offices and a courtroom of the North Carolina Business Court, making Elon Law one of the few law schools in the country to house a working court.

• Elon’s Clinical Law Center, established in October 2009, includes the Wills Clinic serving Habitat for Humanity clients, Juvenile Justice Intervention and Mediation Clinic, and Humanitarian Immigration Law Clinic. The law school also operates a Housing and Domestic Relations Field Placement Program.

• The Center for Engaged Learning in the Law invites law school faculty, administrators, and students from across the country to collaborate in finding ways to improve legal education.

• The law school hosted the inaugural Billings, Exum and Frye National Moot Court Competition in April of 2011, the first national moot court competition established in North Carolina in 35 years.

• The Joseph M. Bryan Distinguished Leadership Lecture Series brings accomplished leaders from a variety of disciplines to Elon to share their experiences and perspectives with students and faculty.

• The law school offers international business law courses in partnership with the Martha & Spencer Love School of Business at Elon University, through which students have had the opportunity to visit law schools, law firms, and businesses in China, Southeast Asia, and Europe.


Location: $10 million, 84,000-square-foot law center in downtown Greensboro, N.C., adjacent to federal and state courts, government offices and major law firms
Year founded: 2006
Enrollment: 344 (2010-2011)
Resident Faculty: 34
Extended Faculty: 37
Administration: 11
Staff: 19
Dean: George R. Johnson, Jr.
Elon University President: Leo M. Lambert 



For more information:

Elon Law website

Philip Craft, Director of Law School Communications
(336) 279-9333 or pcraft@elon.edu