SPLC Summer Media Law & Policy Institute

Summer Media Law & Policy Institute

The 2021 SPLC Summer Media Law & Policy Institute is a five-week online training Institute which will explore emerging issues of law, ethics and policy surrounding media law and press freedom. The Institute will run online from June 15 to July 15 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.

Who is eligible to participate? 

Applications from current law students, 2021 law school graduates, and advanced undergraduates with a strong interest in law school will be considered. We are looking for students with a demonstrated interest in media law, and we encourage students from all backgrounds to apply. One of the goals of the Institute is to expand representation in the media law bar.



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Tuition for the Institute is $750, but generous scholarships are available. Ability to pay tuition should not be a deterrent to applying or attending the Institute. 

Topics will include:

  • Introduction to the First Amendment
  • Media Law 101
  • Open Government and Access to Information
  • Libel, Slander and Defamation 
  • Student Press Freedom 
  • Threats to Press Freedom
  • Global Hot Topics: Data Privacy and Tech
  • Protecting Press Freedom through Litigation, Policy or Advocacy
  • Media Law from the Perspective of Journalist

Taught by media law experts, the Institute provides important networking, mentoring and skills-based learning with academics and practitioners from across the country. One of the highlights is the Moot Court Competition, which students will work on throughout the Institute and will argue in front of leading media law attorneys and sitting judges. 

Although the Institute will be taught online, the number of participants will be capped to maximize student participation. Each workshop will provide an opportunity to interact and network with well-known media lawyers, policy experts, academics and journalists. Participants will be expected to complete roughly one hour of reading per night. They will also prepare a closed-packet moot court brief and oral argument. At this point, academic credit for the program cannot be conferred; however each participant who successfully completes the course will be given a certificate of participation.

Students will graduate from the Institute with a deeper knowledge of a range of media law issues. They will also have a written brief that can be used as a writing sample, a growing network of contacts in the field of media law, and a practical understanding of key legal and ethical issues of our time.

Deadline to apply

Applications are due by Saturday, May 1, 2021. Applicants will be notified of their acceptance into the program.