LL.M. Students: Preparation for Spring 2023 and Orientation Schedule of Activities

Updated: December 6, 2023.

Arrival on Campus: No later than Tuesday, January 2, 2024

LL.M. Students should plan to arrive on campus NO LATER THAN Tuesday, January 2. Please be aware that if quarantine is required, students MUST quarantine and be done their quarantine period prior to the start of orientation. Failure to appropriately quarantine may result in serious government sanctions as well as sanctions under the Washburn University School of Law Honor Code.

Washburn University and the Law School are closed on January 1, 2023, for the New Year's holiday.
The Law School will reopen on January 3.

In-person attendance is expected for all events unless otherwise noted. If you find that you are experiencing a health and safety concern at any time during Orientation, you should not attend, and you should notify LL.M. Director, Professor Lori McMillan (lori.mcmillan@washburn.edu) and Dean of Students Danielle Dempsey-Swopes (danielle.dempsey-swopes@washburn.edu) so that the event can be recorded for you when possible. A health and safety concern includes a fever, cough, sore throat, or exposure to Covid-19.

Covid Regulations: At this point in time, Orientation and all classes are expected to be in person, and masks are not required. University policy can be found at: https://www.washburn.edu/student-life/health-safety/index.html. The university will review its policy weekly and send out any updates via email, as well as updating the site above.

Kansas Requires Tuberculosis Health Verification for All New Students: Without verification, a student may not be allowed to attend classes! Please follow this link to answer four short "yes or no" questions: Student Health Verification - Washburn University.

Recording by Students Prohibited: Recording by students or distribution of school recordings are prohibited pursuant to Part I.A.1.h of the Washburn University School of Law Honor Code. See http://washburnlaw.edu/honorcode. You may ask a professor for permission to record a lecture or class, but it is up to each professor to decide whether to grant this privilege for their classes, and there is no appeal from their decisions on this matter.

NOTE: All times shown below are Central Time (CT); e.g., 7:00 p.m. CT = 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time = 6:00 p.m. Mountain Time = 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time.

Please Do These Things Before January 4

  1. Complete and submit Washburn University's Student Health Verification (four "yes or no" questions).
    • Kansas requires tuberculosis health verification for all new students.
    • Without verification, a student may not be allowed to attend classes!
  2. Submit a photo for your Washburn ID (iCard)
    • In order for us to have your Washburn ID card ready for pick up on Wednesday, January 4 (or earlier if you wish to do so at the iCard Center in Memorial Union), please upload your photo at https://get.cbord.com/washburn.
      • Login with your MyWashburn.edu credentials, generally, firstname.lastname@washburn.edu plus your password.
      • Problems logging in or need help activating your account?
        Please contact Washburn University Information Technology Services (ITS) at (785) 670-3000. Have your Washburn ID number (W followed by 8-digits) available when you call; your ID number was sent to you from the Washburn Law Admissions Office by Cindy Sharp in an email.
    • After logging in: click the "Upload ID Photo" quick link then "Choose File" under Upload ID Photo.
    • Your photo should meet these specifications (199 KB PDF) (generally, full color; clear with good contrast; WHITE background; centered, frontal view of full face and shoulders; no hats/headgear except those worn daily for religious reasons; no articles not visible in your government issued ID; jpg file format; include first and last name as part of the filename).
    • Questions about uploading your photo can be sent to icard@washburn.edu or call (785) 670-1188.
  3. Complete and Submit the Profile Information Form
    • Completing the Profile Information Form will expedite Orientation Check In and help us get to know you better.
    • Information from the form is also used to compile the law school directory.
    • For your address, please use the address where you expect to be during the fall semester.
  4. Complete and Submit the Consent to Release Information Form
  5. Compete the required readings and other assignments described below.

Thank You!

What You Should Bring to Law School

  1. Portable charger/power bank. You may find it convenient to have one or two portable chargers/power banks. An electrical outlet may not always be available since seating in classrooms and the library is now configured to promote social distancing. Examples (but not recommending any specific brand) are covered in this review: https://www.pcmag.com/picks/the-best-portable-chargers-and-power-banks.
  2. Laptop. Any modern laptop should be able to access the campus wireless network. Instructions are at: https://washburn.edu/its/wireless/index.html.

    Many Washburn law students use laptops to take final exams. The program typically used for online exams is Examplify. Learn more about Examplify: https://washburnlaw.edu/students/academic/examsoft/faq.html.

    The above FAQ includes suggested requirements for Windows, Surface Pro, and Mac devices (tablets cannot be used with Examplify). If you are in the market for a new laptop, you might want to go above these minimum requirements by purchasing a device with the best processor and most memory that can be accommodated by your budget, expecting the laptop to last throughout law school. An SSD rather than a hard drive would provide for quicker startup. In addition, Washburn University ITS provides suggested minimum and "for best performance" requirements for Windows and Mac devices: https://washburn.edu/its/tech-recommendations.html.

    Note that you will be able to download Office 365 to your laptop or other devices at no charge. There is no need to pay for a separate subscription: https://washburn.edu/its/office-365/index.html.

    The law school IT staff, Gannon Minnick and Ronald Lagos, will also be happy to assist should you run into any issues setting up your new laptop or accessing the University network. Feel free to contact them now with questions: lawtech@washburn.edu.

Assignments: Readings to Be Completed Before January 9, 2024

Background Readings on Professionalism (required)

Professor Baldwin's Academic Skills Assignment for January 11 and January 12 (required)

Your assignment for the Academic Skills class is to read and brief these four cases (297 KB PDF). You should have a completed brief for each case with you on the first day of class (August 24) when you will also be assessed on your class preparation. To aid you with the case reading and briefing assignments, here is an introductory guide to case law briefing, and instruction on how to read a legal opinion (272 KB PDF).

Washburn University School of Law Directory

The Washburn Student Bar Association sponsors and publishes a directory of students, faculty, and staff at the beginning of each academic year. Photographs taken for the directory are also used to provide faculty with course rosters for their classes.

During check-in on Wednesday, January 3, 2024, we will take your photograph and ask you to provide/verify your address, phone number, hometown, and verify your undergraduate institution.

The directory is available in two formats: print, and electronically through a password protected area of the Washburn Law website. One copy of the print Directory is distributed to each student, faculty, and staff member at Washburn Law. Access to the electronic version of the Directory is limited to students, faculty, and staff at Washburn Law.

Although the information collected above is used to produce the Directory and by Washburn Law personnel in order serve you better during the school year, we recognize that you may not want to share some of this information outside the law school staff. When you provide your Directory information you may indicate your desire to not have one or more of the following items printed in the Directory and displayed in the electronic version:

  • Your photograph
  • Your local address
  • Your local phone number
  • Your hometown
  • Your undergraduate institution

Questions about the Directory may be sent to marketing@washburnlaw.edu.

LL.M. Students Spring 2023 Orientation Schedule of Activities

Following is the schedule of classes and activities for incoming LL.M. students during their initial two weeks at Washburn Law. In the interest of planning, you should prepare yourself for full days. While modifications may occur to this schedule, attendance is required for all events unless otherwise noted.

Week 1 Schedule

Tuesday, January 3

Please arrive in Topeka on or prior to this date. You are responsible for ensuring you complete any required quarantine period prior to the beginning of LL.M. Orientation. It will take some time for you to set up your household, source and buy food and get other necessities you could not bring with you. You will want to set up your accommodations, find out where the nearest grocery store is, figure our transportation to and from campus, and check in with International House on campus. Please have these things settled before you start Orientation so you are not scrambling for time.

Wednesday, January 4

9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. – First Day of Orientation! – Law School Building, Room 150


  • Please enter the law school through the north doors; the check-in process will be in Room 327 located on the third floor of the law school, across from Professor Mastrosimone's office.

Hot Breakfast and Introductions, with:

Technology Connection

  • Technology staff will assist you with connecting to the Washburn University wireless network and verify that your email address is active. Be sure to have your computer and phone with you!

Directory Photos

  • Martin Wisneski will take your photo for the School of Law directory. There will also be an LL.M. class photo taken at this time.

Bar Admission Introductory Information

  • Professor Chelsea Baldwin and Dean Tammy King will share some information for those of you considering taking a U.S. bar exam. A more in-depth session will be held later in the week.

Campus Tour

  • LL.M. Ambassadors will take you around campus and show you where to find the bookstore, cafeteria, Health Services, International House, and gym. Students who have not submitted a photo for their Washburn ID (see above) will be taken to have their Washburn ID issued, which requires government-issued identification (usually passport).

Course Selection

  • You will finalize your course selections (based on the questionnaire you filled out previously) with Professor McMillan and Dean Grant.

12:00-1:30 p.m. – Lunch (provided)

  • Please contact Kerrie Bacon at kerrie.bacon@washburn.edu by Monday, January 1, 2024, if you have special dietary needs, or if you want to specify that you would prefer roast beef, turkey, ham, or vegetarian sandwiches. Please express your preferences for all three days this week.

1:30-3:00 p.m. – Washburn Law Honor Code: This Applies to LL.M. Students! – Room 327

  • Dean Grant will give an essential presentation to LL.M. students about how to stay out of trouble with the Honor Code. Such codes are taken very seriously in U.S. legal culture, and failure to understand and comply with the Honor Code can result in serious repercussions, including failing classes, inability to take a bar exam in any state in the U.S., and even dismissal from law school. You need to know these rules, so you can avoid trouble and help ensure your success in earning your degree.
  • Please read the Honor Code and Procedure for Law Students at https://washburnlaw.edu/honorcode prior to this session.

Thursday, January 5

All Thursday, January 5, sessions will be in the Law School Building, Room 327.

9:00-9:55 p.m. – Time Management for Busy Law Students (Professor Chelsea Baldwin)

10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. – Case Briefing and Class Preparation (Professor Chelsea Baldwin)

12:00-1:00 p.m. – Lunch (provided)

1:00-4:00 p.m. – Bar Session

  • This is for students who are considering writing the bar exam for a U.S. jurisdiction. Dean Tammy King will discuss applications, deadlines, requirements, etc., for the various jurisdictions students are interested in, and develop a timetable and application package for each student to use in registering for a bar exam.

7:00-8:00 p.m. (optional via Zoom) – "So a Family Member is Going to Law School: What to Expect, How to Help, and Your Questions Answered"

Photograph: Jalen Lowry.Jalen Lowry, Associate Dean for Student Affairs, hosts an online event for family and friends of incoming law students. A Zoom invitation will be sent to you before the meeting. If you have not received the invitation by January 4, please contact admissions@washburnlaw.edu. Topics discussed will include what law students will be experiencing and ways they can be supported. If you, family members, or friends were unable to attend but have questions about law school please feel free to contact Dean Lowry at jalen.lowry@washburn.edu.

Friday, January 6

All Friday, January 6, sessions will be in the Law School Building, Room 327.

9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. – Introduction to Research, Resources, and Techniques (library staff) – Law School Building, Room 327

  • Bring your laptop.
  • Students will get their Westlaw and Lexis/Nexis database account information, and have an introductory training session on how to use these databases, Zoom, and D2L (the Learning Management System used by Washburn).

12:00-1:00 p.m. – Lunch

1:00-4:00 p.m. – Study Skills and Law School Success (Professor Chelsea Baldwin)

Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, January 7-9

  • Unscheduled days.

Week 2 Schedule

The second week of LL.M. Orientation will be with the incoming J.D. students.

Tuesday, January 10

Breaks are NOT noted on the schedule, but will be provided throughout the day as needed.

10:00-10:45 a.m. – Welcomes – Room 102

  • Welcome by Dean Preston Nicholson, Assistant Dean for Admissions, and Introduction of Dean Jeff Jackson
  • Welcome by the Dean
  • Introduction of Students

10:45-11:15 a.m. – Belonging – Room 102

  • Dean Emily Grant, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

11:15 a.m.-Noon – University Resources – Room 102

Noon-1:00 p.m. – Box Lunches (provided) with Small Group Mentors

1:00 p.m. – LL.M. students:
please drive to the Brown Park to view an important part of the history of Washburn Law.

This is a required event: please be sure to sign the register at the Park, noting on the register that you are a Washburn Law Student.

Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Park – 1515 SE Monroe, Topeka, Kansas

  • You should plan on about an hour to self-tour.

Directions: The National Historic Park is about five minutes east of the law school. (See map below. Take 17th Street, on the north side of the law school, east until you reach the Park's parking lot on your left just past Monroe Street. If you need disability-accessible parking, go through the parking lot and park behind the building.)

  • It is advised that you do not wear spike heels or expensive shoes, as the path to the building is sometimes not good in bad weather.

Please contact Jalen Lowry, Associate Dean for Student Affairs, if you need a ride to the Park: jalen.lowry@washburn.edu.

Graphic: Cover of volume 42, issue 2 of Washburn Lawyer.See the Summer 2004 issue of Washburn Lawyer for more information about Washburn Law graduates involved in the Brown case.

Map: Washburn Law to Brown v. Board National Historic Park.

You are free for the rest of the day once you have finished your tour.

Wednesday, January 11

Breaks are NOT noted on the schedule, but will be provided throughout the day as needed.

Wear your Washburn Law t-shirt today for the class photo! (t-shirt distributed at Tuesday check-in)

10:15-10:45 a.m. – Class photo – meet in Room 102

  • A staff member will watch your belongings so you can leave them in the room while we take the photo.

10:45-11:30 a.m. – Planning for a Meaningful Career – Room 102

  • Dean Tammy King, Assistant Dean for Professional Development

11:30 a.m.-Noon – KALAP and Wellness (ABA Standard 303) – Room 102

Noon-1:00 p.m. – Pizza (provided) and Meet with Your Small Groups

1:00-2:00 p.m. – Cross-Cultural Competency for Lawyers: ABA Standard 303 – Room 102

2:00-2:45 p.m. – Professionalism and the Honor Code (Academic Section) – Room 102

  • Dean Emily Grant, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

2:45-3:00 p.m. – Law School Services – Room 102

  • Accommodations/Facilities/Staff
    • Director Shelby Grau, Director of Compliance and Administration
  • Finance

3:00-4:00 p.m. – Character and Fitness Qualifications for the Bar Exam – Room 102

  • Ms. Gayle Larkin, Kansas Supreme Court Disciplinary Administrator, will present important information about the Character and Fitness investigations required for licensure. Ms. Larkin will be joined by Ms. Royetta Rodewald, Investigative Specialist, Office of the Disciplinary Administrator (rodewaldr@kscourts.org), and Amanda Kohlman, Attorney Admission Administrator (admissions@kscourts.org).
    • If you have individual questions for the Disciplinary Office after today, you may call Kathleen J. Selzler, Deputy Disciplinary Administrator and Admissions Attorney for the Kansas Supreme Court, at (785) 435-8218 or email her at lippertk@kscourts.org.
    • If you discover after the presentation that you have any matters that you need to report to the law school, please call Donna McMurry at (785) 670-1662 and set up a meeting with Dean Lowry.

4:00-4:05 p.m. – Administration of Professionalism Oath by Dean Lowry – Room 102

After the administration of the Oath, you are free for the rest of the day.

Thursday, January 12 and Friday, January 13

9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. – Room 102 (Lunch will be provided for students during the lunch break.)

Academic Skills Program

Professor Marsha Griggs, Director, Academic Enrichment and Bar Passage

  • Review required readings, listed above
  • This intensive program will introduce students to many of the basic skills and processes they need to succeed in law school. Students will begin the study of case law during the program and the process of learning how to extract critical information from case readings. Students will also be exposed to law school fact patterns and the mechanics of answering law school examination questions. These skills are not explicitly taught in the traditional legal education model, but the program represents Washburn's commitment to cutting-edge legal pedagogy that is supported by modern educational research.
  • The Academic Skills Program is required for all J.D. and LL.M. students. It is optional for Transfer and Visiting students (but highly encouraged for those who will not yet be starting their third year).

Saturday, January 14 and Sunday, January 15

  • Unscheduled Days

Check your assignments for next week. (Spring class assignments aren't posted yet, but they should be by January 15.)

Monday, January 16

  • Unscheduled Day – Martin Luther King Day: No class.

Tuesday, January 17

Other Activities Throughout the Semester

Most law students are advised to not immerse themselves in other activities at the beginning of their first semester, until they find their footing and know how much time they will actually have.

Professionalism Group Meetings (Mandatory) will continue for the first few weeks of the regular semester: Dates TBD

Professional Development Office (PDO) Events

  • Orientation to Your Professional Development Office – Friday, February 3, 11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m. – Room 114
  • Legal Resume and Cover Letter Workshop – Friday, February 24, 11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m. – Room 114

Academic Support Events

  • Tuesdays, beginning January 17, from 11:00 a.m.–Noon: Academic Support will email you further details.

Washburn Student Bar Association Events

  • January 20: WSBA will have a Welcome Back Event for all students at the Celtic Fox, 118 SW 8th Avenue, Topeka in the Lounge and River Rooms – more details will be forthcoming in the WSBA Newsletter, which is emailed to students each weekend.
  • February 1-2: WSBA Spring Elections

Opportunity Fairs / Organizations

Learn about student and non-student organizations at the Opportunity Fairs on Wednesday, February 1 and Wednesday, February 8 in the First Floor Commons of the Law School.

Wednesday, February 1, 2023 – 12:15-1:15 p.m. – Student Organizations

Feel free to contact the organizations on your own at any time. More information about Student Organizations can be found at https://washburnlaw.edu/organizations.

Wednesday, February 8, 2023 – 12:15-1:15 p.m. – Non-Student Organizations Opportunity Fair

Information about and opportunities with university, law school, and legal community organizations.

Short URL for this page:

Important Dates
  • January 2: Arrive in Topeka No Later Than This Date
  • January 4: LL.M. Student Orientation Begins
  • January 5: Family & Friends: What to Expect, How to Help, and Your Questions Answered About Law School (Zoom) (7:00-8:00 p.m.)
  • January 17: Regular Classes Begin
  • January 27: Tuition Payment Deadline; Last day to receive 100% tuition refund
  • February 1: Student Organizations Opportunity Fair (12:30-1:30 p.m.)
  • February 8: Non-Student Organizations Opportunity Fair (12:30-1:30 p.m.)
  • March 11-19: Spring Break
  • May 1-12: Final Exams
Help With Zoom

If you are not familiar with Zoom, please familiarize yourself with this program. For assistance with Zoom go to: https://washburn.edu/student-life/health-safety/, select "Technology Support Links," then click the link below "Zoom Training." Register for access to Zoom if you have not done so already. Test your equipment (Zoom works on desktop computers, laptops, tablets, and smart phones) and internet access (cable, wifi, cellular data plans).

Contact Professor Thomas Sneed at thomas.sneed@washburn.edu with equipment/internet concerns.

D2L Tutorials

The learning management system used by Washburn University is D2L (Desire2Learn). You should not need to access D2L for First Week activities. The following tutorials will help acclimate you to D2L for your regular classes that begin on August 30:

Additional tutorials are available in your D2L account under the "Online Student Resource Center" link near the top of the page.

To access D2L at Washburn University go to: d2l.washburn.edu.

  • Your login credentials are your Washburn email address and password.

D2L support is available 24 hours a day by calling (866) 888-1272.