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Business Law Advising Program

Roughly one-half of U.S. workers are employed by business enterprises that have fewer than 500 employees. About one-fifth of U.S workers work for companies with fewer than 20 employees. The Business Law Advising Program equips students to advise these small and midsize businesses that drive the U.S. economy as well as entrepreneurs starting business enterprises.

Real World Inside the Classroom

The business law faculty members at Widener Law Commonwealth have developed the Business Advising curriculum in consultation with business lawyers and business owners to ensure students have the inside track to business law practice. Certificate courses focus on business organization and structure, taxation, financing transactions, employment relationships, and intellectual property. Every Business Advising student must take one transactional skills course to gain practical experience in contract drafting, business formation, and various types of business transactions.

Real World Practical Experience

Business Advising students have numerous opportunities to put their practical skills to work outside of the classroom.

Dauphin County Bar Association Lawyers for the Arts ProgramArtists and arts organizations face many of the same legal issues as other small businesses. Widener Law Commonwealth is a partner in the Dauphin County Bar Association Lawyers for the Arts Program. This program pairs artists and arts organizations of limited means with experienced attorneys. Business Advising students participating in this program will gain valuable client interviewing skills and have the opportunity to work with Harrisburg-area business lawyers. Read more about about Widener's involvement with this program.

Hands-on Transaction Training: Since 2014, Widener Law Commonwealth Business Advising students have had the opportunity to compete in regional and national transactional law competitions in which they negotiate a simulated business acquisition transaction. Members of the Central Pennsylvania legal community contribute their time train our teams. In 2018, we hosted the regional Transactional LawMeet and in 2019 we hosted the first MidPenn Invitational Transaction Competition.

Business Advising Externship Program: The Business Advising Program provides students with the opportunity to work for law school credit in a variety of practice settings related to business law.

Real World Connections

The Business Advising Program is led by Professor Christian Johnson. Visit our Business Advising Faculty page for a list of full-time and adjunct faculty affiliated with the Business Advising Program.

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News Articles

Photo of Waleisha Moat
Law Student Selected for Prestigious ABA Business Law Diversity Scholarship

Student Waleisha Moat was a recipient of the ABA business law Diversity Clerkship to clerk on the prestigious Delaware court of Chancery.

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The Business Advising Program benefits from the input of its Advisory Board, made up of alumni and friends of Widener Law Commonwealth. The members of the Advisory Board are:

Matthew Curran,'13, Partner, Penwell Bowman + Curran
Richard A. Heeter
, Principal and Managing Director, Capital Trustees, LLC
Marija Kuren, '04, Assistant Counsel, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture
Alexander D. Langan, '12, Partner, Langan Financial Group, LLC
Angela McGowan, ’07, Member, Pillar + Aught
Rory G. Ritrievi, '98, President and Chief Executive Officer, Mid Penn Bank
Adam L. Santucci, '09, Member, McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC
Anthony B. Seitz, '08, Vice President, Development, High Associates, Ltd.
Henry W. Van Eck, '98, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the Middle District of Pennsylvania
LaToya Winfield Bellamy, '05, Member, Eckert Seamans, Attorneys at Law