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Why Harrisburg: Living and Learning in the Capital Region

Widener Law Commonwealth’s location as the only law school in the capital of the nation’s fifth most populous state presents a world of opportunities for our students. Harrisburg offers the best of two worlds—the energy and convenience of an urban center with all the advantages of a small town.

Learning in Harrisburg

 Picture of Capitol

The PA Capitol

Widener Law Commonwealth's campus lies just six miles from the heart of Pennsylvania’s Capitol Complex, which includes the houses of the legislature, many state agencies, state courts, and federal courts.

 alumnus Patrick Murphy and his student fellows


Our graduates work in every branch of state government, practice with firms and corporations of every description, and look for opportunities to open doors for fellow—and future—Widener Law Commonwealth alumni.

 photo of an event inside the PA Capitol

Law and Government

Harrisburg is particularly ideal for our Law and Government Institute and students completing its certificate programs. They enjoy access to the processes of legislation and policymaking that no other school in the capital region can match.



Living in Harrisburg

 photo of students at a baseball game

Nearby Attractions

There is so much to discover—educational and nightlife options abound! Harrisburg's vibrant downtown boasts great restaurants, theaters, museums, and bars. Hershey, famous for its amusement park and chocolate, and historic Gettysburg are a short drive away.


 outdoor recreation photo

Outdoor Recreation

When you are ready to escape the urban environment, nature is minutes away. Take your choice of outdoor recreational activities on the Susquehanna River and nearby Appalachian Trail or explore Riverfront Park, one of the most scenic inland waterfronts in the nation.

 map of the Harrisburg and surrounding areas

Cost of Living

With approximately 600,000 people, Central Pennsylvania features the attractions of a major population center: cultural institutions, plentiful shopping, and fabulous eateries. However, the cost of living is much lower than in New York City, Philadelphia, or Washington D.C.



Harrisburg is ranked as the #1 Best Place to Live in Pennsylvania for 2021-2022.

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View just some of the nearby attractions below in the embedded map, or view the larger map in a new browser window

VIDEO: Becoming a Lawyer and a Leader in Harrisburg

Widener Law Commonwealth students share how learning the law in Harrisburg has shaped their futures.



Appalachian Brewing Company
Midstate Distillery
McGrath's Pub
Lancaster Brewing Company
Zeroday Brewing Co
Spring Gate Vineyard & Brewery
Harrisburg Improv Theatre
Carly’s Ristorante and Piano Bar
Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra
Open Stage Theatre
Harrisburg Senators Baseball Team

Camp Hill
Oyster Mill Playhouse
Dave and Buster's
The Coliseum

New Cumberland
Harrisburg Comedy Zone

Penn Hotel Sports Bar
Troegs Independent Brewery
Iron Hill Brewery
The Vineyard at Hershey
Hershey Theatre
Hersheypark Stadium
Hershey Bears Hockey Team
Hershey Area Playhouse

Family Friendly

The Capitol Complex
Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex
City Island
The Civil War Museum
Broad Street Market
Whitaker Center
Midtown Cinema
The State Museum of Pennsylvania
Open Stage Theatre
Harrisburg Senators Baseball Team
Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra
Susquehanna Art Museum
Fort Hunter Mansion and Park 
Dauphin County Parks and Recreation
Keystone Trails Association
Get Air Harrisburg
Lake Tobias

Camp Hill
Oyster Mill Playhouse
The Coliseum
Visit Cumberland Valley

Hersheypark/Chocolate World
Troegs Independent Brewing
Hershey Gardens
Zoo America
Hershey Bears Hockey Team
Hershey Theatre
Hersheypark Stadium
Antique Automobile Club of America Museum
Hershey Area Playhouse
Adventure Sports

Carlisle Theatre
U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center
Carlisle Events 
Downtown Carlisle Association
Carlisle Sports Emporium

Destination Gettysburg
Gettysburg National Park

Lancaster Central Market
Sight and Sound Theatre
The Fulton Theatre
Amish Country
Spooky Nook Sports