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Pre-law events at Calvin

During the academic year, the Pre-law Program at Calvin sponsors informational meetings, lectures and panel discussions.

2014-2015 Pre-law Program Information Meetings

All Calvin students who are potentially interested in exploring a future career in law are encouraged to attend the annual informational program meetings at the beginning of the school year.

Thursday, September 4, 2014
Freshmen and Sophomores: 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.
Juniors and Seniors: 4:45 to 5:45 p.m.
Political Science Department Conference Room (273A)
(located on second floor of DeVos Communications Center)

Law Admission Made Easy

Valuable information about the application process for law school, including how to best utilize the services of the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) and tips for writing an effective personal statement will be presented by Annette Pettyjohn from Liberty University Law School.

Thursday, September 25, 2014 at 4:00 p.m.
DeVos Communications Center Room 170

Why Law School? Why Wayne

Jocelyn Benson, Dean of Wayne State University Law School will be at Calvin to speak with students about unique scholarships available to Calvin students, the benefits of attending law school in midtown Detroit, and about Wayne Law's programming in entrepreneurship and business law, international legal studies and civil rights.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.
DeVos Communications Center Room 170


The Role of an Attorney in the Arena of Immigration and Refugee Advocacy

The next Pre-Law Lunch is scheduled for Thursday, March 26 with attorney Johnny Pinjuv from Immigration Legal Services in Grand Rapids. With experience working for the Department of Justice, Human Rights Watch, and the UofM Human Trafficking Clinic, Pinjuv brings human rights-centered experience to all of his work, including direct client representation and policy work. He will talk about his own path to becoming an immigration advocate, and the experiences and opportunities he has found along the way, as well as discussing the role of a lawyer in the context of immigration and refugee advocacy. Limited spaces are available at the lunch, and students should RSVP to Ellen Hekman to reserve a place.

Thursday, March 26, 2015 at Noon
DeVos Communications Center Basement Lobby


Refugee Law: International Human Rights
in Action

International Refugee Law protects millions of individuals each year who are in dire need of safe haven -- it is also one of the few internationally recognized human rights mechanisms that has a tangible impact on domestic law. Johnny Pinjuv, a local immigration lawyer, will discuss the ways that Refugee Law has significant and concrete effects on the rights of actual individuals, and the need to foster those rights in today's political climate.

Pinjuv works with a wide variety of immigration cases in his current position with Immigration Legal Services in Grand Rapids, MI. He has a passion for social justice and for effecting that justice through immigration and refugee advocacy. Pinjuv is a graduate of UofM's Program in Refugee and Asylum Law, and has worked for the Department of Justice, Human Rights Watch in Switzerland, and the UofM Human Trafficking Clinic.

Thursday, March 26, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.
Commons Annex Alumni Board Room



Online opportunities related to preparing for and attending law school

How to Write the Perfect Law School Personal Statement

Indrani Gardella, from InGenius Prep and former Associate Director of Admissions at Stanford Law School, will lead a webinar about how write a personal statement that will move your application forward at law schools.

September 17, 2014 from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m.
For more information and to register

Michigan State University Online Webinars

Webinars are 45- to 60-minute online presentations focusing on numerous topics from the law school admissions process to legal career options. Webinars include a Q-and-A segment allowing participants the opportunity to ask questions of the presenters. Webinars are offered at no cost, although advance registration is required.

The Life and Times of an Associate Attorney

A free webinar, sponsored by PatBar, is available to students. "The Life and Times of an Associate Attorney" will discuss how to be a successful associate at a law firm, and include information about scheduling activities, handling multiple supervising attorneys and succeeding with assignments given by supervisors. PatBar seeks to provide valuable services for students who are interested in the legal field of Intellectural Property Law and Patents, but this webinar will be applicable for all students who are planning to attend law school and practice law in their career.


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Off campus opportunities related to preparing for and attending law school

Chicago Law School Forum

The LSAC holds Law School Forums around the country annually, featuring numerous American Bar Association (ABA)- approved law schools. Participants can talk to various law school representatives and attend workshops throughout the day. The event is free, but pre-registration is recommended.

2014 Annual Conference of the Tri-State Academy of Legal Studies in Business

Faculty and students interested in law-related issues are invited to attend this day-long event. Papers submitted by September 13, 2014 will be peer reviewed for publicaiton in the conference proceedings; those who wish to share work-in-progress can submit abstracts to be considered for inclusion in the proceedings.

Sentencing Reform Issues Legislative Day in Lansing

The Citizens Alliance on Prisons and Public Spending (CAPPS) is sponsoring a Legislative Day in Lansing that will include appointments to speak with legislators about parole and sentencing reform issues, specifically HB 4809. This is a bill that speaks to releasing long-time prisoners who were sentenced to life with the possibility of parole. There will be transportation from Grand Rapids, leaving Church of the Servant parking lot at 7:30 a.m. and returning by 4:30 p.m.

  • September 17, 2014
  • Transportation between Grand Rapids and Lansing is available.
  • To register, call CAPPS 517-482-7753 or e-mail
  • For more information, call Carol Rienstra at 616-724-6772

Restorative Justice Coalition Candidate Forum

the Restorative Justice Coalition of West Michigan will host a Candidate Forum. Individuals running for school boards, state legislature and national offices have been invited to answer questions from the audience about their opinions on restorative justice issues, such as parole and sentencing reform, zero tolerance vs.restorative practices and more.

  • September 23, 2014, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
  • GVSU Loosemore Auditorium, downtown Grand Rapids

University of Michigan Law Day

Law Day provides an opportunity to meet admissions representatives and learn about specific schools and programs. There is no admission fee, but you must register when you arrive at the event. More than 120 law schools will be available to meet with students.

  • September 23, 2014 from 3:00 to 6:00 pm
  • U of M's Michigan Union on the Ann Arbor Central Campus
  • For more information

Making the Transition to Law School

An informal reception, followed by a panel discussion featuring faculty and students from the Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School is being sponsored exclusively for Calvin College students.The event will include a presentation about a new scholarship available only to Calvin students. This is an excellent opportunity for students to meet with law school faculty and learn more about what law school is actually like.

  • September 24, 2014 from 4 to 5:30 pm
  • Cooley Law School campus, downtown Grand Rapids
  • Transportation will be provided between Calvin and Cooley's campus downtown
  • RSVP to Ellen Hekman by September 19!

Michigan State University Law Preview Day

The program will include multiple panel presentations, a moot court demonstration, and sessions on admissions, career options, and financial aid.  A complimentary lunch and optional tour of the Law College also will be offered.

Michigan State University "Lunch and Learn"

Individuals who plan to apply for admission to MSU Law for entry in fall 2015 are invited to attend this “Lunch and Learn” session focusing on the MSU Law College admission process.

Michigan State University Reception for interested Students

Prospective applicants and their guests are invited to join MSU Law faculty, staff, students and alumni for this 90-minute reception. Brief remarks regarding the academic program, admissions, and career services will be followed by informal conversation with members of the MSU Law community. Early registration is encouraged.

Law Career Symposium

The Thurgood Marshall Law Association and Toledo Excel are sponsoring the Law Career Symposium at the University of Toledo College of Law. Panels will include "The Law and You," "Preparation for Law School," "The Law School Experience," and "Judges Speak." Panelists will include a distinguished mix of judges, lawyers in practice, law students and faculty.

University of Iowa Bridge Program

The University of Iowa College of Law is sponsoring their Bridge Program to introduce minority students to law school.  Throughout the two-day program, students learn what it's like to be a law student, how to develop the strongest application possible, what a law school class is like (through a mock class), what are the best ways to write with clarity, and which factors they should consider as they apply to law schools, along with many other topics.Students work as a team on an assigned project with one a law school professor or local practicing attorney and end the weekend by presenting, along with their teammates, their resolution to the assigned project. 

  • February 27 and 28, 2015
  • On the campus of University of Iowa College of Law in Iowa City, IA

The Death Penalty on Trial

The Crossroad Bible Institute will sponsor a seminar featuring Christian leader and author Shane Claiborne sharing his perspective on the death penalty. Dr. H. David Schuringa, Dr. John Bolt and Dr. Stephen Monsma will serve as respondents. The event is free of charge, but participants must register in advance.

  • May 19, 2015 at 2:30 p.m.
  • 2480 44th Street, SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49512
  • To register: call 1-800-668-2450 or

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Next LSAT at Calvin

Saturday, September 27, 2014
DeVos Communication Center

Next MPRE at Calvin

Saturday, November 1, 2014
De Vos Communication Center

Law School Visits to Calvin's Campus:

Sept. 25, 2014: 4:00 pm
Liberty University Law School

Oct. 7, 2014: 10am to 1pm
Valaparaiso University Law
Johnny's Cafe

Nov. 7, 2014: 10:30am to 1pm
Michigan State University College of Law
Johnny's Cafe

See Past Events »

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