Facebook pixel School of Law Diversity Projects and Programs | Pepperdine University Skip to main content
Pepperdine University

School of Law Diversity Projects and Programs

Pepperdine Legal Aid Clinic at the Union Rescue Mission

The Pepperdine Legal Aid Clinic at Union Rescue Mission, established in 1999 through a collaborative effort between Pepperdine University Caruso School of Law and URM, was created to assist the urban poor of the Los Angeles Skid Row community in breaking through the many seemingly insurmountable legal barriers that stand in the way of their recovery and re-entry into society.

The Pepperdine Legal Aid Clinic at Union Rescue Mission seeks to answer God's call to "do justice and to love mercy" by providing direct legal advice and representation to homeless and formerly homeless men and women participating in rehabilitation and job development programs in the Los Angeles Skid Row area.

The Pepperdine Legal Aid Clinic serves the homeless population of downtown Los Angeles. The Clinic is housed in the Union Rescue Mission (URM), one of the largest homeless shelters in Los Angeles. While participating in the Clinic, student law clerks receive training and provide legal assistance to the many homeless and formerly homeless men and women in the "skid row" area. Clients, referred by URM and other area missions, shelters and rehabilitation programs, receive assistance with parentage, custody, visitation and child support matters. The Clinic seeks to work alongside program participants who are working hard to better their lives and reconnect their families. link

Special Education Advocacy Clinic

It is the mission of the Pepperdine Special Education Advocacy Clinic (PSEAC) to enrich the legal education of law students through participation in this public interest area of the law by providing advocacy services and training to Regional Center consumers and their families, and by empowering parents and families of children with disabilities to be effective advocates by building their knowledge of special education law and teaching them the skills necessary to productively and successfully participate in the processes and procedures involved therein. Biography for Jerry Simmons

Academic Success Program

Weekly workshops for all students which cover general skill-set enhancements and opportunities to practice legal writing.

Academic Symposium on Diversity

In the years since the Supreme Court's decision in Grutter vs. Bollinger, law schools have struggled to determine how to best attract, enroll, and retain a diverse student body. The struggle profoundly affects not only law schools but also the greater legal profession. To address this issue, the Pepperdine Law Review hosted a symposium entitled, "Post-Grutter: What Does Diversity Mean in Legal Education and Beyond?" The day-long event took place on Saturday, March 31, at the Drescher Conference Center, on Pepperdine's Malibu campus.

A headshot of John Payton - Pepperdine University

The symposium included opening remarks by Dean Ken Starr and a keynote address by John Payton, who served as lead counsel for the University of Michigan on the Grutter case, handled Grutter and Gratz in the trial court, and argued Gratz before the United States Supreme Court. Payton, a former visiting professor at Harvard Law School and the Georgetown Law Center, is a partner at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP. In addition to the University of Michigan cases, he has extensive civil rights experience including defending the use of race-based measures to address continuing problems in our society.

In addition to the keynote speech, the symposium featured three panel discussions: diversity in admission of students, diversity in retention of students, and diversity in professional careers.