Achievement in the Evening

American University Washington College of Law offers one of the premier part-time law programs committed to ensuring a high-quality education and personal experience for our part-time students. Ranked 4th in the nation, AUWCL's part-time program provides part-time students with the same breath and depth of courses available to their full-time counterparts. Part-time students are fully integrated in extracurricular activities including moot court, mock trial and alternative dispute resolution honor societies; law journals and law briefs; and participation in our nationally ranked clinics. One of the focuses of the program is to ensure that part-time students can succeed in law school while balancing full-time employment and all of the demands of everyday life.

AUWCL Administrative Office, such as Office of Career and Professional Development, Office of the Registrar, and Office Student Affairs, are dedicated to the unique needs of part-time, evening students. These offices offer unique programs tailored to the needs of part-time students and have a presence on campus during the evenings to services the part-time students. Additionally, the Assistant Dean of the Part-Time Program helps coordinate services and advocates for the needs of part-time students within the Administration.

Your Part-Time Law School Experience: A Message from the Associate Dean

Ezra Rosser, Professor of Law and Associate Dean for the Part-Time and Evening Division
Ezra Rosser, Professor of Law and Associate Dean for the Part-Time and Evening Division

The part-time and evening students at WCL are an extraordinary bunch. Every year the U.S. News publishes its annual ranking of law schools and of law school programs. The numbers change. What remains constant is the qualities of students in the part time program and the high level of instruction they receive. Though I have been the associate dean for the part time and evening program for less than a year, I have been very impressed with the commitment students, faculty, and staff have shown in this difficult year to ensuring that though this year is different it is not lesser.

The thing that most impresses me about students in the part time program is their ability to juggle multiple demands. Taking only slightly fewer credits per semester than students in the full time program, part time students typically are doing law school on top of a regular job as well as other commitments. Perhaps I should not be surprised. After all, so many part time students come to WCL with a track record of career success, a body of work that suggests that they are up to the challenge. But I also do not want to diminish the effort. Law school, even without a full time job on top of everything else, can be difficult. So I want to celebrate those people—the students—who are the heart and soul of the part time program.

It is also worth noting the dedication of the faculty, including our tremendous group of adjunct professors, who teach evening classes and who make the part time program possible. Speaking personally, I am so grateful that so many of the best professors at the school choose to teach at night. Though at other schools, teaching at night is often done on a rotational basis, WCL’s evening classes tend to be filled with professors who want to teach then. Such a choice finds its reward in the diversity of backgrounds and experiences that are found in each class of part time students. Learning is a collective activity, a work shared by everyone at WCL regardless of where they sit (or stand) in the classroom.

The part time program at WCL offers the full range of experiences, in terms of courses, clinics, externships, and student clubs, available in the day program. And it does so in the nation’s capital. Going forward, we will continue to grow, taking lessons from the pandemic’s forced move to online instruction while also working to maximize the value of our DC location. No institution is perfect and there is space for improvement in every program, but the education and opportunities available through the part time program are unique and I thank everyone of their engagement, energy, and commitment.

Ezra Rosser
Professor of Law and Associate Dean for the Part-Time and Evening Division
American University Washington College of Law

A Tradition is Service to Non-traditional Law Students

American University Washington College of Law is an institution with a unique heritage. It was founded over 120 years ago by two pioneering women – Ellen Spencer Messey and Emma Gillett – at a time when women were generally excluded from the legal profession. The founders created a tradition of providing opportunites for those histrorically outside the mainstream of the legal profession. As such, we have a long histroy of offering evening and part- time opprotunities when other schools have cut these programs