So far, clients at Amicus Partners have largely been of two kinds: one, law students in their final or penultimate year of law and two, law grads with a few years of work experience. So naturally, our focus has been on the LLM (and other masters courses) that are tailored for these two segments; I would say that 95% of our clientele is not really looking for anything else.
However, over the last few weeks, I have become aware of a small section of lawyers who are also considering “executive” programs – courses with a reduced residency requirement, tailored to fit into a working professional’s schedule.
Essentially, these programs provide some of the big draws of a full-time LLM: specialist knowledge, brand, and networking without having to give up the entire year (or ten months) that the full-time course would take. And of course, the associated costs that a year out of the country would carry.
To be honest, I am not quite sure if Indian lawyers see executive LLMs as a value proposition, but I do come across lawyers who are considering it. Typically, these are lawyers who are firmly on the Partner track (or close to it), and looking to up skill. At the same time, they are also wary of a year-long departure from the office.
The question is though, will they bite?
Institutions like Columbia Law School certainly think so. They have recently launched their Executive LLM program, and they are not the first major law school to do so. Given below are the details of two other US law schools that offer executive LLM’s.
Of course, you would be well-advised to read through each program’s fine print to see if they satisfy your requirements such as Bar eligibility, qualifying for OPT etc.
Columbia Law School’s Executive LLM in Global Business Law
The newest entrant, as far as I know, to the “e-LLM” club, the Executive LLM from Columbia Law brings a whole lot to the table: online courses and assessments, a three-month residency requirement in New York City, and some stellar faculty. The website mentions that they prefer applicants with a minimum of five years of work experience.
Tuition: $72,560 (More info)
Application Deadline: January 18, 2019 (Preferred deadline is Dec 18, 2018) (More Info)
Pros: Faculty, Career Services, Brand, Location
Cons: Does not qualify you for NY Bar, Expensive, First year of operations
Northwestern Pritzker School of Law’s Executive LLM Chicago
Born out of the accelerated summer LLM program, Northwestern’s Executive LLM Chicago (ELLMC) course was formally launched in 2016. With a curriculum that “will focus on the way lawyers interact across the world with business clients and enterprises”, the ELLMC is not really for someone looking to make that switch to the US. In fact, this is one of the facts that are clearly stated on the website itself (see below)
Tuition: $67,066 (See more)
Application Deadline: Rolling admission
Pros: Qualifies you for California Bar (but read the fine print), scholarships (partial) available, entire course is class-based
Cons: Not tailored for US employment, Expensive
London School of Economics and Political Science Executive LLM
With an LLM that is quite popular amongst Indian law graduates, LSE does enjoy a certain amount of brand recognition in India. In addition, the ELLM at LSE also comes with a set of specialisations, and can be completed over the course of four years. Applicants with at least 3 years PQE are preferred.
Tuition: £3,250 per module, 8 modules for completion (£26,000)
Application Deadline: Rolling admission
Pros: Can be covered over 4 years, Location, “Exit points” for those who don’t complete course
Cons: No scholarships, Fairly intensive teaching schedule [pdf]
In addition to the three listed above, one can also look at IE Law School’s Executive LLM that is jointly offered with Northwestern University. And lastly, thanks to LinkedIn, I found the Master of Advanced Corporation Law (MACL) course from the University of Michigan’s Law School.