OSEL was created in 2011 as part of a larger initiative to modernize and expand opportunities for students to learn essential lawyering skills. We are extremely proud of our longstanding history of skills courses taught by dedicated practitioners willing to instruct, coach, guide, advise and mentor. All students must complete eight skills courses before graduation, however, OSEL encourages students to take more. Did we mention the courses are free and also do not impact your GPA? Did we also mention some courses are designed as practicums, where students are able to practice a certain skill? Learn about our "Forward Friday" series to help advance your career.
Students should first review the Local Rules pertaining to Skill Courses to understand how to register and the expected conduct. Next, see the Skills Calendar for information about each course. Last, enroll via Blackboard, sign the official registration sheet and have fun!
Another important responsibility of OSEL is overseeing externships which provide incredible opportunities to learn in context. Students are mentored by a professor and field placement supervisor to guide through the rigor and expectations of practice. Students must apply for an externship by specific deadlines. Do not miss the opportunity! Although, we cannot guarantee a placement for all students, we encourage all to apply.
Before the first day of classes begin for the Spring semester, the Office of Skills and Experiential Learning host a Professionalism Convocation ceremony for 1L's. The ceremony is to provide a time and space to reconvene as a class and focus on an orientation into the profession. Many times, the fall orientation is consumed with academic success messages. Although academic success is an important aspect to the law school experience, it is not the only measure of success in the profession. The ceremony provides a time to reflect upon the various career pathways many attorneys create for themselves and analyzes how they define success. This past year we partnered with the Louisiana Bar Association Committee on the Profession to connect students and practitioners based on areas of interest. Every year the ceremony includes a guest judge who provides opening remarks and also administers the Student Professionalism Oath. See past ceremonies.