Mission Statement | School of Law | SIU

Southern Illinois University



Mission Statement


We strive for a highly qualified, diverse student body from across the country and from all walks of life. Small by design, SIU School of Law has one of the lowest student-faculty ratios in legal education. Our professors and administrative staff maintain an open-door policy for students, providing mentoring and opportunities for individualized feedback. Our Academic Success Program paves the way for high student achievement in the classroom and on the bar exam. 


We choose faculty who teach well, love the classroom, and place high expectations upon themselves and their students. We value educational innovation and strive to implement the best of theoretical and experiential teaching in our classroom and clinical environments. Our classrooms are equipped with the latest teaching technologies to enhance the classroom experience. SIU School of Law's nationally ranked Lawyering Skills program and ABA Gambrell Professionalism Award winning Professional Development Series bridge the gap between theory and practice and prepare our students to function effectively as professionals when they begin their careers. Our goal is to teach our students to become independent learners who know how to analyze and solve problems for a lifetime as attorneys.


We expect high standards of scholarship from both our faculty and our students. Many of our faculty members enjoy national reputations as experts in their fields of study; several have been selected to teach abroad as Fulbright scholars. The law school's presence on the campus of a major research university permits crossdisciplinary scholarship, including the work done by our Center for Health Law and Policy in conjunction with the SIU School of Medicine. As an aid to scholarship, we provide twenty-four hour physical access to the law library, as well as electronic access to SIU Carbondale's nationally ranked Morris Library. We showcase the best of our students' legal scholarship through our two law journals and award-winning moot court program.


We believe public service is one of the highest callings of the bar. SIU School of Law is committed to keeping tuition and expenses low so our graduates can afford to pursue public service careers if they so choose. We demonstrate our commitment to public service through our clinics, which serve critical needs within underserved segments of the community; the individual pro bono initiatives of our faculty, students and staff; and the service our staff and faculty give to bench, bar, and educational committees at the local, regional, and national levels.


We are proud to be a part of Southern Illinois University and its heritage of providing educational access to students from all walks of life. We embrace our local communities, the stunning natural beauty of the region, and the unique geographical access we have to major urban areas in the Midwest and the South. Our social traditions unite us as a law school community and emphasize the importance of friendships and balance in a professional life. We treasure the community of students, scholars, alumni, visitors, and friends associated with the law school, and we honor our past—the vision and commitment of those who recognized the need for the SIU School of Law and worked so hard to establish an institution in the public interest to serve the public good.