Welcome Information

Welcome to the Environmental Law Summer Session at American University Washington College of Law (WCL)!

Below is information that you may find useful when planning your trip to and stay in Washington, DC during the 2016 Environmental Law Summer Session. There is information about how to get to the law school, class materials, technological facilities, and other information that may be useful. More detailed information can be found in the Welcome Guide. This website will be updated as the summer session approaches.

Summer Program Office

The 2016 Summer Program Office is located in Room Y360S, which is in the Yuma Building on the Third Floor in Suite 360 (the International Suite). Erika Lennon, who can answer all of the questions you may have about the Summer Session and all things related to it, can be found there or by email: elennon@wcl.american.edu or phone: 202-656-1267.

WCL now has three buildings (Warren, Yuma, and Capital), to see where Room Y360S is, please consult the Tenley Campus Floorplans!

Seminar Materials

Seminar materials will be available online through MyWCL. To save paper and trees, seminar materials for the Environmental Law Summer Session are not going to be printed out. All materials will be posted online or emailed to you. Alternatively, you can bring a flash drive and we can put materials on it. If this is a problem or if you have questions about seminar materials, please send an email to summerenvironment@wcl.american.edu.

Non-WCL Students can email Erika for their seminar materials or come to see her in the Environmental Law Summer Session Office.

Maps and Directions

The Washington College of Law has recently moved and is now located at 4300 Nebraska Avenue, NW. This is in the upper northwest section of Washington, D.C. Also, please note that this is about five city blocks north from the main American University campus (straight up Nebraska Avenue).

The following are useful Maps of the WCL area:

Additionally, you can find directions to WCL here.

The Metro System

The DC Metro system is very clean and efficient. Additionally, the Metro employees are used to helping Washington visitors. Metro's website www.wmata.com is very useful, and has bus and train schedules, bus and train route maps, hours of operation, information about the next metro arrival at each station, etc.

WCL and American University are located in Tenleytown and the closest Metro stop is Tenleytown/AU (also called Tenley Circle) on the Red Line. WCL is a 5-10 minute walk from the Tenleytown Metro station. Upon exiting the station, walk East down Wisconsin Avenue and turn right at Tenley Circle. Here are walking directions from the metro station. Additionally, there is a WCL shuttle that you can take from the metro station, see below for detailed instructions).

Regular Metrorail fare during peak periods (weekdays: opening to 9:30 am and 3-7pm; weekends: 2 am-closing) is between $2.15 and $5.90. Reduced fares are in place at all other times and are between $1.75 and $3.60. Additionally, there is now a paper farecard surcharge of $1.00.  Farecard machines are located in every station and small bills are recommended.  There are no change machines in stations and farecard machines provide only up to $5 in change (in coins). You may purchase a SmarTrip card for reduced rates and easy reloading.  SmarTrip cards are $5.00 and can be purchased online at www.wmata.com and come with $25 loaded for travel, or may be purchased in several Metro stations and may be reloaded at any metro stop. Having a SmarTrip card will mean that you do not have to pay the $1.00 paper farecard surcharge for every trip you take, thus saving you money.

Numerous buses serve the Tenleytown area and you can see which bus would be best for you by consulting the wmata website. Metrobus fares are $1.75 for regular buses and $4.00 for express buses. Bus drivers do not carry money.  Please have your SmarTrip card, transfer, or exact fare ready when you board. Additionally, you can transfer from the Metrorail to the Metrobus for free using your SmarTrip card.

Shuttle from the Metro to WCL

From the Tenleytown/AU Metro stop you can also take the American University Shuttle for trips between Tenleytown, WCL and main campus. Board the AU shuttle at Tenleytown Metro stop. Tenley Campus is the 1st shuttle stop. Enter through the Warren Building pedestrian entrance located directly in front of the AU shuttle stop. See the shuttle tracker for live bus information, or the shuttle schedule for operating hours and frequency. For more information please call (202) 885-3302.

For those staying in the AU dorms (Cassell Hall), the Shuttle bus (Blue or White Route) picks up at a variety of locations on main campus and will take you to WCL. Additionally, the Shuttle bus (Red Route) will has a stop on Massachusetts Ave NW by Katzen Art Center (near Cassell Hall). Shuttle bus information is available at 202-885-3111 or at www.wcl.american.edu/shuttle.cfm#metro. Additionally, you can find the shuttle schedule for the summer here: http://american.edu/finance/facilities/shuttle.cfm.


The Washington College of Law campus is located one block (0.3 miles) east of the Tenleytown-AU Metro station. From the Metro station, walk east on Wisconsin Avenue one block to Tenley Circle, turn right onto Tenley Circle, and right again at Nebraska Ave. The pedestrian entrance will be on the right. Enter through the Warren Building entrance. View the map.


Parking is available at 4300 Nebraska Avenue, NW. You may park your vehicles in the WCL garage with a permit. Permits may be purchased in the Facilities Management Office, room YT05. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the parking policy, please contact the Facilities Management Office at 202-274-4008.


When using a taxi service be sure to instruct the driver to take you to 4300 Nebraska Avenue NW, rather than just to American University. The Washington College of Law is not located on the main AU campus, but rather the Tenley campus. If you need a taxicab, please call: Diamond Cab: 202-387-6200 or Yellow Cab: 202-546-7900.

Pence Law Library

The Pence Law Library is located in the Warren Building. The Law Library is open to the general public. Library hours during the Environmental Law Summer Session can be found on the Pence Law Library website: http://library.wcl.american.edu/hours.cfm.

The Pence Law Library website is also an excellent way to search for legal materials. To start a search for books and periodicals, go to http://library.wcl.american.edu and on that page you can do a quick search in Leagle or click on the "Leagle, Library Catalog" link, which will take you to the library catalog. The catalog identifies all of the materials housed in the library, as well as electronic resources that can be used within the library.

Many periodicals, including law reviews, bar journals, and newsletters, are available through HeinOnline, a full-text electronic database available on the Pence Law Library website, which can be accessed by clicking on "Research Tools.” HeinOnline, also has many indexes to legal periodicals. Links to all available research databases are located under “Information Resources, A to Z” or “Information Resources by Topic.” These links offer non-legal or more specified research tools. To access these resources from the Pence Law Library webpage, you must be connected to the WCL network, either in the law school or via remote access using your my.american.edu password.

Professional reference assistance is available in the main reading room on the first floor of the Library. During the summer, reference assistance is available daily from 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm. During the academic year, reference service is available from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday; 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Friday; 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 pm Saturday from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., and Sunday from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.. Reference librarians are also available to faculty and students for research consultations by appointment. You may contact a reference librarian at reflib@wcl.american.edu or by telephone at 202-274-4352.

To make copies of publications in the Library, self-service photocopiers are located on both floors of the Library, and photocopy machines for microform are located in the Reserve Room on the first floor. All Library photocopiers require the use of a copy card. You can purchase a copy card at one of the "Card Value Centers" for $1 in one of the Library's copy rooms. Please note that there are no facilities available for making change from coins or bills. There are several banks and local businesses in the immediate area of the Law School that might assist you

Computer Lab - Technology Services

The Computer Lab is located in the Pence Law Library and the technology help desk is located in the Warren Building on the Terrace Level in room NT10. Additionally, the library has research ONLY stations, which are computers on which you may do research using Lexis, Westlaw, CALI and the internet. However, editing papers and checking email is not permitted at these stations.

Additionally, WCL has a wireless network connection that can be accessed throughout the building.

How to Log-In and Log-Out of the WCL Computers

When you sit down at a library computer, there will be a log-in window with two fields of information for you to fill in. The Circulation desk staff (on the first floor of the library) can give you the necessary information to log-on to the library computers. Once you have finished working at your station, please remember to log-out. To do so, go to the Start Menu and select "close all programs and log on as a different user." This will log you out of the network and will make sure that other students do not see your personal information.

Wireless Network Access

WCL has wireless internet in all of its classrooms. You will be able to log-on to the WCL network using your AU user name and password. If you are using your own laptop throughout the Summer Session and do not have an AU log-in, please use the wireless network named wcl-guest. The username and password will be provided on arrival.

If you have any questions, please contact summerenvironment@wcl.american.edu or the Office of Technology.


The weather in Washington, DC in late May and June tends to be hot and humid. Temperatures range from 80 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit (26 to 38 degrees Celsius). There are often thunderstorms as well in the middle of the day, so having an umbrella or raincoat will likely be useful.


Dress for classes at the university is generally casual. Jeans, skirts, shorts, athletic shoes, and sandals are all acceptable for both men and women. If you are participating in site visits as part of a seminar you are taking (namely International Institutions and Environmental Protection) or because you want to, you should wear business casual attire.

Food at and around WCL

There are numerous restaurants in the Tenleytown area and around DC, below is a few that are in the area immediately surrounding the law school. More information about local restaurants can be found in the Welcome Guide.

WCL Cafeteria
On the first floor of the Yuma Building, there is a cafeteria. It has snacks, coffee, a salad bar, hot food, a grill, pizza, sandwiches, etc. During the Summer Session, the cafeteria will be open M-Th from 8am-2:30pm and Fri. from 8am to 2pm.

WCL Atrium Cafe
In the Capital Hall Atrium, there is a cafe that serves coffee, pastries, and sandwiches.