Careers in Academia

If you’re thinking about pursuing an academic career, an LL.M. or S.J.D. degree program could be a helpful step for you. The helpfulness of an LL.M. or S.J.D. degree depends, however, on where you want to teach and which degree program you are interested in pursuing. Our LL.M. and S.J.D. degrees tend to be valuable credentials for students who earned their first law degrees abroad and wish to teach or are already teaching in their home countries. Georgetown Law graduates, and some current students, teach in law schools and faculties in many countries. 

For American lawyers, if your goal is to use the degree as a stepping stone for a teaching career, we generally do not recommend application to the LL.M. or S.J.D. programs, although there are exceptions to this recommendation. For some American lawyers, Georgetown’s LL.M. in Taxation has been a useful credential for teaching. An LL.M. in Global Health Law might also be a useful credential for lawyers interested in teaching health law. In either case, you should be aware that the market for law professors in the United States is extremely competitive. It takes hard work and not a little luck to become a law professor. 

Lawyers and law students interested in tenure-track teaching careers in the United States should consider applying to Georgetown’s Research Fellows program, which is specifically intended for lawyers who wish to teach. Other law schools offer similar programs.
If you are interested in clinical teaching, you should consider applying for one of Georgetown’s prestigious clinical teaching fellowships. 

Some of Georgetown Law’s institutes, such as the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law and the Center for National Security and the Law, also have institutional fellowships that can support budding scholars. These institutional fellowships may also be open to foreign lawyers. You should consult their web pages for updated information.

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