Holloran Center Courses

The Holloran Center Fellows design and teach a number of unique courses at the Law School, all centered on the themes of ethical and professional formation.

These courses include Ethical Leadership in Corporate Practice, Executive Prespectives in Ethics and Compliance, and Foundations of Justice just to name a few. Please see the full list of courses below.

Ethical Leadership in Corporations

Co-teachers: Professor Neil Hamilton and Fellow Norm Linnell

This course will help students explore their role as counselors and servant leaders in a corporate practice setting. Using a case study methodology common in business schools, students will discuss cases and real-world problems with a focus on counseling and problem-solving. After reflecting on their own values, students will examine the concept of leadership within the profession, and will hear from numerous guest lecturers who are leaders in Minnesota's legal and corporate communities.


Executive Perspectives in Ethics and Compliance

Co-teachers: Professor Neil Hamilton and Professor Ron James

This course will provide students with an opportunity to learn about compliance from the perspective of executives and leaders in the industry. Practicing compliance executives will discuss goals, strategies, activities, and challenges associated with their business. Students will have an opportunity to relate the philosophies and techniques developed in the MSL/LLM Compliance program to those presented. Through candid and in-depth conversations with participating executives, students will learn about compliance from a leadership perspective relevant to today's complex business environment.


Foundations of Justice

Teacher: Professor Jerry Organ (additional section taught by Dean Rob Vischer)

This course is designed to equip students to discern and articulate the connections between law, social justice, and morality. A combination of large and small group discussions, individual reflection, and lectures explore topics such as human dignity, the social order, the role of the state, economic justice, truth and freedom, and the vocation of the lawyer. Students read a variety of religious and non-religious perspectives on a given topic, along with judicial opinions that reflect the law's relationship with the topic. Classroom exercises encourage students to wrestle with the implications that their own moral convictions have their own moral convictions have for their understanding of law and the lawyer's role.


Professional Responsibility

Teacher: Professor Neil Hamilton (additional section taught by Professor Greg Sisk)

This course will examine issues of legal ethics and the professional responsibility of lawyers. Students will study the law governing the conduct of lawyers in areas like formation of the lawyer/client relationship, conflicts of interest, confidentiality, client communications, and the lawyer's role within the adversarial process. Additionally, students will move beyond the legal rules and regulations to explore expanded and aspirational ideas of what a lawyer's role can and should be in the lawyer/client relationship in the profession, and in society.


Mentor Externship

Co-teachers: Professor Neil Hamilton, Professor Jerry Organ, and Fellow Norm Linnell 

Each year of law student, students are paired with respected lawyers and judges in the community. Mentors introduce students to a wide range of lawyering tasks and judicial activities and are with them the traditions, ideals, and skills necessary for a successful career. Second and third year students participate in an academic credit program that combines field work with a contemporaneous seminar component. The seminar fosters the habit and skill of reflective lawyering and draws upon student/mentor experiences to examine the law school's mission in a practical setting. Class topics are designed to bridge the gap between students learning and life as a lawyer. Each students is given the opportunity to individualize learning goals specific to his or her unique path of professional development. Professor Hamilton, Professor Organ, and Professor Linnell are among some of the instructors for this seminar requirement.

To learn more about the Mentor Externship program, please visit their website


Crime and Punishment

Teacher: Fellow Hank Shea

This course explores the theories of criminal punishment in the context of examining the historical evolution of sentencing policies and procedures in this nation. We will focus particularly on the period of the mid-1980 to the present and the advent and role of mandatory minimum terms of imprisonment and determine sentencing guidelines in the dramatically increasing population of incarcerated offenders. We will endeavor to evaluate the effectiveness and sustainability of such practices in protecting the public, deterring crime, and achieving justice for victims in an ear of increasing competition for scares tax dollars. We then will undertake to propose and weigh alternatives to incarceration for punishing various groups of offenders. The ultimate purpose of this course will be for each student to determine whether our current incarceration should be continued or, if not, what other alternative should be considered or pursued. 



Co-teachers: Fellow Hank Shea and Adjunct Professor Matt Forsgren

Conducting and supervising investigations have become growing responsibilities of many types of attorneys. The purpose of this course is to engage in a practical focus on the development of knowledge-based skills and practices that will benefit future lawyers in the acquisition and analysis of relevant facts to address and solve legal issues and problems. This experiential course provides an opportunity for students to learn about criminal, civil, and internal investigations from a practical, hands-on perspective. Through individual and group exercises, each student will play multiple roles of government lawyers, criminal defense attorneys outside counsel, and in-house counsel. Evaluations will be conducted in person and via video tape review by the course professor and by guest speakers.


Ethical Leadership in Litigation

Teacher: Fellow Hank Shea

This course is structured similar to Ethical Leadership in Corporate Practice described above, except that it focuses on the student as an ethical advocate, counselor, and servant leader in litigation. The biggest difference is that in nine of the thirteen classes, the speakers for that class are ethical leaders in a specific area of litigation practice (e.g. criminal prosecution, criminal defense, poverty law, complex civil litigation, ADR, etc.). The speakers and the class discussion following the speakers will consider servant leadership with clients, colleagues in the firm, adversaries, and decision makers in the context of the particular litigation area for that evening's class.


Ethical Leadership in Social Justice

Teachers Fellow Hank Shea and Justice Mimi Wright

Ethical Leadership in Social Justice focuses on a wide range of topics in relation to social justice, including education, domestic violence, disabilities, the environment, immigration, and international criminal law. The class places a particular emphasis on how attorneys can discern their role as advocates for social justice and use their skill set to further equality in society. Class time is largely used for discussion, as well as to host speakers who are prominent in the social justice arena so that students are able to see how the principles being taught are applied by professional. Much of the coursework for students is based on reflection journals, but students have the opportunity to write both a personal credo and vison statement identifying their ethical principles and goals, and end the semester with a group presentation on a relevant social justice topic.