The Women, Leadership and Equality Program at the School of Law combines teaching, experiential learning, and scholarship about women in the legal profession to prepare its graduates to become leaders in their chosen careers. It is the first and the only one of its kind at an American law school.
The Program provides an opportunity for students to engage in critical thinking about cutting-edge issues in gender and leadership. It seeks to produce lawyers, both male and female, who are aware of the barriers that face women seeking positions of leadership in society and who will actively promote women in these roles.
The Program also helps students develop the professional skills necessary for success and leadership positions in law, business, government, the nonprofit sector, and the judiciary through its Rose Zetzer Fellowship Program. Named for the first woman admitted to the Maryland Bar Association, it provides training in professional skills, including communication, organizational dynamics, leadership, and personal negotiation through externships and other practice-based learning.
Selection of Rose Zetzer Fellows: Students interested in applying to become Fellows should enroll in the Gender in the Legal Profession Seminar or the Gender and Law Seminar in the Spring of their second year. At the end of this prerequisite course in April, those students interested in becoming Rose Zetzer Fellows in the fall of their third year (or fourth year if evening students) will complete an application process. Up to ten students who demonstrate a strong intellectual interest in and commitment to women and leadership issues as indicated by their past experience and research and writing skills in the Gender in the Legal Profession Seminar or Gender and Law Seminar will be selected to be Fellows. These students will participate in an Applied Workshop (the Zetzer Fellows Seminar) during their final year of law school. They will also assist faculty in the research component of the Zetzer Fellows Seminar by providing research assistance and by actively participating in website management, panel and symposia planning. They are also eligible to enroll in the optional WLE Externship and do an externship at a women's policy or direct service organization like House of Ruth, the National Women's Law Center or the Maryland Women's Law Center.