Students who enroll in this offering may count the credits towards the JD experiential learning requirement.
Prerequisite: The seminar is by permission of the instructors. To apply, students should submit a brief statement of their interest and relevant background (courses, internships, and work/life experience) in criminal justice issues to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Exam Type: No Exam
This full-year seminar immerses students in the work of criminal justice policy reform. The centerpiece of the seminar is sustained, substantive work on criminal justice policy initiatives led by the Criminal Justice Policy Program (CJPP), a research and advocacy center based at HLS. Students work on policy projects geared toward real-world reform under the supervision of the Program’s Executive Director (Brook Hopkins) and faculty Co-Directors (Professors Carol Steiker & Alex Whiting), and CJPP staff, typically in partnership with outside organizations and government agencies.
This year’s policy projects will have as their focus the intersection of race and poverty in the criminal justice system. In addition to the policy projects, the seminar engages students in an ongoing discussion of modes and strategies for achieving criminal justice reform as well as fundamental normative questions about the operation of the criminal justice system, including its interaction with questions of social and racial justice.
The seminar hosts prominent practitioners and policymakers as visiting lecturers to discuss strategies for reform and to provide background and guidance on the seminar's policy projects. Students are invited to all of the public events sponsored by CJPP and may be involved in choosing topics and planning such events.
Although there is no final exam or final paper, students will be expected to do substantial writing over the course of the seminar and to present their policy reform projects to the other seminar participants.
Note: This seminar will meet every other week over the entire year.
The credit breakdown for this seminar is as follows: 4 credits total with 1 classroom credit and 1 writing credit per term, and the option of applying for an additional writing credit each term. Note that due to the Experiential designation of this course, the writing credits will not automatically fulfill the HLS Written Work Requirement.