Law school introduces required course on race, 'white supremacy,' and 'racial hierarchy'

The Roger Williams University School of Law recently announced it will be introducing a required course on the subject of ‘Race & the Foundations of American Law.’

The course was previously offered as an elective, but will now be required for students starting in Fall 2021.

The Roger Williams University School of Law recently announced it will be requiring a course on race and law in the upcoming fall semester as part of its second-year curriculum. 

“Race & the Foundations of American Law” had been taught as an elective in the spring, but will now be a requirement starting next semester after its initial pilot phase. 

The course will examine “the roles white supremacy and racial hierarchy play in current systems.” It will also “take a critical look at current anti-racist approaches and tactics and explore ways in which unjust/or discriminatory systems can be dismantled.” 

[RELATED: American Bar Association considers anti-bias training mandate for law schools]

The press release also states that it is a “novel course team-taught by three faculty members for the purpose of integrating these important topics into the larger law school curriculum.” Professors Diana Hassel, Nadiyah Humber, and Nicole Dyszlewski taught the elective in the spring.

RWU Law Dean Gregory W. Bowman said in the press release that requiring the course is “what is best for our students.” He went on to describe how “offering this course aligns perfectly with our institution’s larger social justice mission. It is something we needed to do, something transformative, something that will better equip our graduates to work within the legal system to create a world that is more equitable for all.”

[RELATED: University of Illinois law school launches 'racial justice practicum']

Roger Williams University School of Law is the only law school in Rhode Island.

Campus Reform reached out to the Roger Williams University School of Law and Dean Gregory W. Bowman, but did not receive a response in time for publication. 

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @opheliejacobson.