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EXPLO Pre-College + Career  |  Wellesley College Trial Law + The American Justice System

Learn about the judicial system, analyze case law, explore the framework around crime and punishment in America, and get a taste of life in law school and in the courtroom.

Student Life  Info Meetings

About this Concentration

Campus: Wellesley College Rising Grades: 10-12

The American Justice System attempts to settle disputes and administer justice in our complex society through a framework of laws and consequences. From copyright infringement to homicide to smartphone privacy to contract disputes, the law touches our lives on a daily basis. 

In Trial Law + The American Justice System, engage with the moral and ethical challenges of our time. Ponder such questions as Why do we need and allow our government to punish? How do we rationalize different degrees of punishment? What fundamental rights does everyone have, and what justifies limiting those rights? How much can and should we rely on law enforcement officers? How do race, equity, and socioeconomics impact practices like profiling? And How do you defend a client you think is actually guilty? As you attempt to answer these questions, start a legal boot camp with a simulated law school seminar and quickly move on to essential lawyering skills as you prepare for trial.

Tuition + Admission

College credit is available through Sarah Lawrence College. Learn more.


  • Trial Preparation and Coaching with Hon. Richard L. Gabriel — Walk through the lawyer’s role in all phases of a jury trial, including jury selection, opening statement, direct and cross-examination (including objections to the introduction of evidence), and closing argument with former trial lawyer and current Colorado Supreme Court Justice Richard L. Gabriel. Justice Gabriel also teaches techniques for effective advocacy at each of these phases of a trial and the art of persuasion.
  • Go to Trial — After intensive preparation, put on your suit and head to the courtroom. A sitting judge presides while you make your case.
  • Socratic Style Seminar — A longstanding, powerful approach to examining complex and (sometimes) contentious ideas, the Socratic seminar is a staple of law school and engages students in a fast-paced dialogue on cases ranging from negligence to insider trading to the role of plea bargaining.
  • World-Class Legal Experts — Connect with leading experts including practicing attorneys, sitting judges, and legal thought leaders who are deeply involved in the American legal system. Hear more about their work, the unique career pathways available to you, and gain insight into what has made them successful in their field — as well as the mistakes they’ve made along the way.
    Past speakers: Hon. Justice Richard Gabriel, Justice, Colorado Supreme Court; James Foreman, Jr. Professor, Yale Law School. Michael Dorf, Professor, Cornell Law School.
  • Pre-Law and Law School Admissions —
    Hear from pre-law advisors and top law school admission officers about the various pathways for law school applicants.

Concentration Details


  • Session 1: June 26 – July 8, 2022
  • Session 2: July 10 – July 22, 2022

Tuition: $5,875

Required Materials:

  • EXPLO Pre-College + Career students are required to bring a laptop, computer, tablet, or Chromebook to the program. All devices must be able to access the Internet and utilize basic word processing and presentation-type programs (PowerPoint, Keynote, etc.) Rentals are available after enrollment in the program. Please contact our Admissions Team at 781.762.7400 for more information on rentals.

Learn From Our Experts

Our experts and advisors are both on campus and behind the scenes, training a lens on future-focused learning to prepare students for college, career, and beyond.

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