Online Video Do’s and Don’ts

With on-and off-campus interview slots becoming increasingly scarce, more  of our applicants are opting to conduct an online video interview.  That’s smart; it’s a quick, easy and convenient way to supplement your application.

But, after reviewing more than 1,500 online video interviews last year, the Admissions Committee has some advice for those of you who are planning use this platform.


Treat this as a professional interview and dress accordingly.  Remember, even though you can’t see us, we can still see you (and your pajamas and Budweiser t-shirt).

Practice.  This will be the first online video interview experience for many of you.  It’s a little different.  Do as many practice questions as necessary in order to feel comfortable.  The “deer in headlights” look is not good in this situation.

Make your bed.  If you are conducting the interview from your dorm room, or bedroom, tidy up a bit.  Seems basic, but we saw a lot of poor housekeeping last year.

Find a stable wifi connection.  You’ll have approximately 90 seconds to answer your questions.  Make sure we get to view your entire response.

Find a nice, quiet spot in which to conduct your interview.  You don’t want any cameo appearances by your roommate or cat.


Put your laptop on your actual lap.  Very unstable.  Trust me.

Avoid eye contact with the camera.  It’s weird.

Twirl your hair, swivel in your seat, rock back and forth… get the picture.  Just be conscious of your body movement, because we have no choice but to be.

Panic – relax, smile and enjoy the experience.  You got this.

Now that you are fully informed and prepared, you can request an online video interview on our website.

Good luck!

Off-Campus Interview location update

The following locations are now closed:

Ann Arbor    MI
Birmingham    AL
Boston    MA
Bridgewater    NJ
Buffalo     NY
Charlottesville,    VA
Englewood Cliffs    NJ
Jcksonville    FL
Lehi    UT
Long Beach    CA
Madison    WI
Nashville    TN
Orlando    FL
Portland    ME
Richmond     VA
Sacramento    CA
Tyson’s Corner    VA

Practicing Law Globally


The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia where Northwestern Law students have held externships under the supervision of Professor David Scheffer.

Among the many opportunities to practice the law globally, Northwestern Law offers semester-long international externships, in which students work at organizations such as foreign courts and non-governmental organizations in exchange for academic credit. The externship offers students a full immersion into the legal, political, and social landscape of an international organization while simultaneously allowing them to apply their legal acumen to complex and unique situations. Professor David Scheffer, director of the Center for International Human Rights supervises the program, and each fall holds a briefing to inform students of the many exciting global opportunities available.

Law, Technology, and Business

At this year’s Northwestern University Venture Challenge (NUVC), three entrepreneurial Northwestern Law students and alumni successfully pitched their startups and earned seed funding to help bring their enterprises to market.

Drawing students from across disciplines and campuses at Northwestern together for an entrepreneurial competition is at the heart of NUVC. Conceived eight years ago, the competition has grown into a vital network of Northwestern-affiliated innovators and leaders.

Northwestern Law student Kieren Patel photographed near the Segal Visitor's Center on the Evanston campus of Northwestern University in Evanston, IL

Kieren Patel (JD-MBA ’16)

This year, Opticent Health, launched by Kieren Patel (JD-MBA ’16) won first prize at the NUVC competition on June 4, earning $45,000 in startup capital. Opticent Health is one of three participating startups, including MDAR Technologies and Hazel Technologies, with Law School students or alumni as part of their company leadership. NUVC is divided into five competitive tracks: business products; consumer products; green energy and sustainability; life sciences and medical; and social enterprise. This year, the competition began with 86 applicants and over the course of two rounds they were winnowed down to five, the strongest in each category. In the final round teams give presentations in front of venture capitalists and entrepreneurs from around the country.

Patel’s startup designs and manufactures optical medical devices, specifically creating non-invasive tests for eye disease. In addition to winning first prize across the whole competition, Opticent Health also won first prize in the life sciences and medical track of the competition. Patel, the president and CEO of Opticent, has a PhD from the University of California at Berkeley in Molecular and Cell Biology and has distinguished himself at Northwestern as an Innovation to Commercialization Fellow (I2C), which gives graduate students first-hand experience in handling intellectual property for innovations developed at Northwestern University.

Patel says the idea behind Opticent Health was born from talking to his father, an ophthalmologist of 35 years, who had recently attended a seminar in Los Angeles where Northwestern biomedical engineering professor Hao Zhang outlined an imaging technique that would produce richer optical scans by delving into tissue health. During Patel’s I2C Fellowship he worked with Zhang to “translate the technology from bench to bedside.” Zhang is now Opticent’s chief science officer.

Patel believes NUVC helped shape the final product: “NUVC was a terrific opportunity to pressure test our company’s business case and commercialization plan with seasoned and knowledgeable judges.”

Northwestern Law student Jesse Chang photographed near the Segal Visitor's Center on the Evanston campus of Northwestern University in Evanston, IL

Jesse Chang (JD-MBA ’16)

Jesse Chang (JD-MBA ’16) is also an I2C Fellow and the leader behind MDAR Technologies, which pioneered a new form of motion-contrast 3D scanning that helps autonomous vehicles respond more accurately in difficult driving conditions. MDAR Technologies won third prize in the overall competition and first in the business products track.

Amy Garber (MSL ’15) started Hazel Technologies, LLC this year with classmates from her NUvention Energy course. Their product, FruitBrite, seeks to slow down the fruit ripening process, so that produce lasts longer and generates less waste. During the market research phase of the course Garber and her team discovered the retail sector loses billions of dollars annually in lost produce, so they set on a path to focus on retail and distribution as their core markets.

Masters of Science in Law program student at Northwestern Law in Chicago, IL. Photo credit: Randy Belice

Amy Garber (MSL ’15)

Hazel Tech won second place in the green energy and sustainability track, and Garber serves as the chief intellectual property officer. That role has proven instrumental in both evaluating patented technology and structuring financial deals. Garber describes herself as a “liaison between law and technology.” Garber is a member of the first class of Master of Science in Law graduates at Northwestern Law, a program designed to bring together leaders with science backgrounds and provide business-centered legal training.

NUVC is run primarily by EPIC, an undergraduate student group, with support from the Kellogg Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative and the Farley Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

Student Organized Programming

With over 40 active student organizations, Northwestern Law has a rich slate of programming throughout the year. Each week, student groups collaborate to put together informative panels, discussions, and events addressing topics important to them and the legal profession. This week, the Christian Legal Society and St. Thomas More Society share a week of programming at the Law School designed to engage the community on issues of faith, professionalism, and public interest. Check out this week’s full schedule below, and stay tuned to hear about more student organization-hosted events at the Law School this fall.

Thomas-More-CLS (002)

Welcoming New Students

Dean Daniel B. Rodriguez“I envy each and every one of you in the journey you are about to begin as a law student. This is a wonderfully interesting, intellectually rich and rewarding experience and I encourage you to take advantage of all the opportunities the deep and broad study of the law affords. You will engage with complex issues in your readings and your class discussion. And I want to stress to you that the issues you study and chew over relentlessly really matter. The study of law is the study of the structure and contents of rules and institutions which foster a civilized society.” — Dean Daniel B. Rodriguez, from his address welcoming new students to Northwestern Law. (A .pdf version of the address can be downloaded from this link.)

MSL welcomeDean Rodriguez welcomed new students to the Master of Science in Law (MSL) program. This year’s entering MSL class—the second class of this new program—is 50 students strong; students have diverse professional backgrounds, from neurobiologists to mechanical engineers, chemists, and information technologists.

Sarah O’Rourke SchrupAs an introduction to some of the exciting hands-on work taking place at the Bluhm Legal Clinic, Sarah O’Rourke Schrup, director of the Appellate Advocacy Center, along with four alumni, shared their experience of working on Kingsley v. Hendrickson, a case heard by the United States Supreme Court earlier this year. From research, to drafting briefs, to participating in moots, the alumni described the experience as “one of a kind.”

“The study of law is demanding, it’s exciting, it’s grueling, it’s difficult. It’s going to rewire your brain and make you question yourself and the world. And that’s a good thing.” –Student Bar Association President Marco Minichiello, speaking to incoming students as part of yesterday’s opening convocation ceremony. Watch the video:

Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman

Today we welcomed over 300 new JD, JD-MBA, JD-PhD, and LLM students to campus with an opening convocation ceremony that included remarks from Dean Daniel B. Rodriguez and president of the Student Bar Association Marco Minichiello (JD expected 2017). Pictured here: Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman, U.S. District Judge for the Northern District of Illinois, administering the Northwestern Law Pledge of Professionalism.

Shannon BartlettShannon Bartlett, Director of Diversity Education and Outreach, kicked off the Law School’s 2015 new student orientation by hosting a series of events for diverse students. Shannon leads the Office of Diversity Education and Outreach, which offers support and mentorship for members of underrepresented communities at the Law School. In her talk—pictured above—she discussed Law School life and culture, tools for working through interpersonal challenges, and techniques for building community.

Destiny PeeryThe day’s activities included an introduction to the Socratic Method by Professor Destiny Peery. A graduate of Northwestern Law’s JD-PhD program, she teaches courses on criminal law and race, social science, and the law.

2015 Fall On-Campus Interviewing

OCI Fall 2015

The Law School’s largest employment recruitment program, Fall On-Campus Interviewing, wrapped up today after two busy weeks. OCI draws a diverse pool of employers from across the nation and around the world, giving students the opportunity to explore a variety of professional engagements.