High School Law Institute (HSLI)

Application Period

The High School Law Institute's application period for the 2020-2021 year is now open and will close August 30, 2020. Decisions will be given on September 3rd.

Access this year's application here.

About the High School Law Institute

The New York University High School Law Institute (“HSLI”) is a student-run organization that serves talented and motivated high school students throughout New York City. Alongside our sister program at Columbia Law School, we offer free, yearlong academic programming in constitutional law, criminal law, and moot court on Saturdays from 10 AM to 1 PM.

Ideal HSLI students are those who recognize the impact of the legal system, wish to learn more about how it concretely impacts society, and are preparing themselves to serve and advocate for others. While there is no expectation that our students apply to law school or pursue a legal career, we do expect that they apply themselves diligently to their studies in high school and beyond.

Courses are taught by teams of current NYU Law and undergraduate students. Teachers receive thorough training prior to class and receive ongoing support throughout the year. They are also provided with detailed curricula created by veteran HSLI instructors and board members that are scaffolded to support high school student understanding. Each lesson contains discussion questions, background information, classroom activities, and homework assignments that can be tailored to fit each student’s interests. Our classes are discussion-driven aimed at fostering independent thought. At HSLI, students are encouraged to think well, advocate well, and work collaboratively; they are also taught to evaluate arguments based on analytical rigor and strength of evidence.


HSLI is instituting a remote-learning model in response to our global crisis for at least the Fall semester of our program. All lessons and mentorship opportunities will be held online, in the meticulously planned and tested formats that students, parents, and schools have come to expect from our program. While HSLI thoroughly understands the value of an in-person classroom experience, we also acknowledge that in-person instruction is highly impractical for our institution, our students, and our teachers. The decision about whether Spring 2020 will be in-person will be made later in the semester and will, of course, depend on a large number of factors.

HSLI typically holds two important events in addition to regular classes: College Day and Graduation. In November, HSLI students and their parents are invited to Columbia Law School for College Day, a family workshop to demystify the college process. Graduation is the final day of the program and has been a capstone event involving pairing with their counterparts from Columbia for mock trial and moot court competitions with instructors from both schools presiding, followed by a formal ceremony with certificates, awards, and presentations. While COVID-19 has thrown these two events into uncertainty, HSLI will attempt the replicate the value of these events as much as possible under present and future conditions.

Classes Timeline

Classes are held each Saturday from 10 AM to 1 PM. The dates of the program are as follows:

  • Fall Semester Dates (2020): Sept. 26th, Oct. 3rd, Oct. 10, Oct. 17, Oct. 31st, and Nov. 14
  • College Day: TBD
  • Spring Semester (2020): Jan. 23, Feb. 13, Feb. 20, Feb. 27, Mar. 6.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at nyu.hsli@gmail.com.

The content on student group pages is created by each group and does not constitute official statements or views of NYU Law.