Law students who are also interested in business can now take advantage of a new certification program at William Mitchell College of Law and earn a Law and Business Certificate. Students can earn the certificate, which is unique to Mitchell, through the school’s Center for Law and Business.
The certificate program supplements the law school’s practical, skills-based legal education and focuses on the fundamentals of accounting and finance, business strategies and planning, taxation, risk management, branding and marketing, and intellectual property.
Students also learn the essentials to starting and building a business, and practice such crucial skills as counseling, negotiating, and drafting. Students who obtain a Law and Business Certificate will receive a special notation on their transcript, but more importantly, according to legal professionals and business leaders, they gain knowledge and skills that better prepare them for success upon graduation.
“The consensus from the legal community is that a better understanding of business makes people better business lawyers,” said Jann Olsten, the center’s executive director who is also co-founder and former chief executive officer of Archiver’s, one of the nation’s largest craft and scrapbooking supply companies. “They can serve their business clients so much better when they know business in addition to law.”
Mitchell’s Center for Law and Business is completing its second academic year. It was created with input from both business leaders and lawyers, who helped shape the program by sharing their perceptions of what attributes would be attractive to businesses looking to hire law school graduates.