Black Law Students' Association (BLSA) at UofT Law
BLSA at UofT Law is a chapter of the Black Law Students' Association of Canada (BLSA Canada), a national, not-for-profit organization. The national body was formed in 1991 to identify and work towards the removal of systemic and other barriers facing Black people in relation to law school and the legal profession in general. Through the promotion of institutional change within Canadian law schools and the legal establishment, BLSA Canada, in conjunction with the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers (CABL) works to ease the transition from law school to the legal profession.
BLSA at UofT Law facilitates relationships between law students and the wider community through legal education and mentorship with legal practitioners. One of the highlights of the year is the national BLSA Canada conference which brings Black students together to provide a forum for discussion and an opportunity to network with legal professionals from across the country. For more information about BLSA at UofT Law, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Community-building and networking activities for Black law students
Each year, BLSA, our Black alumni and UofT Law collaborate to provide a range of social and networking activities for Black UofT law students. Examples include Orientation week social events, dinners with alumni, networking events, attending the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers (CABL) annual gala, attending the annual BLSA national conference, and many other community-building moments.
Mentorship at UofT Law
Black UofT law students can meet with Neil Dennis, our Director, Career Development Office, to receive support, guidance and mentorship. Neil is a senior staff member at UofT Law and a member of the Black Future Lawyers Working Group. He is a former Assistant Dean at Howard University School of Law and Georgetown Law Center.
The Alumni-Mentorship Program pairs students in all years of study with UofT Law alumni who are practicing lawyers. Students can request a mentor who shares their personal identity and/or cultural background.
The Peer Mentorship Program (PMP) pairs first year students with upper year mentors. Founded by a group of law students in 2009, the PMP fosters an inclusive community within the law school. Mentors act as a confidential source of guidance on both academic and non-academic matters. 1L students can request a mentor who shares their personal identity and/or cultural background.
Other supports and services at UofT Law
UofT Law’s Leadership Skills Program offers a series of innovative workshops to help students develop the key leadership skills required for professional success. Facilitated by industry experts, and developed in consultation with students, alumni and numerous members of the legal profession, the Leadership Skills Program prepares students to transition from a stellar law student to a highly-regarded and successful summer student, articling student and lawyer.
The Faculty of Law offers several academic supports, including a free peer tutoring program, writing coaching, and access to a learning strategist.
UofT Law supports its students to develop the skills to enhance wellbeing and cope with challenges. The law school offers in-house mental health counselling, peer mental health mentoring, as well as workshops and other opportunities to develop wellness and resilience skills.
UofT Law’s Career Development Office offers a variety of services to its students including: career and coaching advice, career planning and development workshops and seminars, resume and cover letter review, interview preparation assistance and clerkship application support and access to job postings.