Immigration, Asylum, and Citizenship Law Area of Focus

Miami is a major immigration gateway to the United States and home to a sizable immigrant and naturalized citizen population. With a large and growing number of students at Miami Law interested in immigration law as a career or area of study, coupled with the Career Development Office identifying immigration law as one of the top fields pursued by our graduates, we now offer an area focus in this field.


Hours Requirement

Students will devote at least 14 credit hours to the area of focus.

Application Requirement

Students may apply in the spring of the 1st year or the fall or spring of the 2nd year. The application must include a plan providing for the fulfillment of the area of focus requirements. Interested students should contact the faculty coordinator Rebecca Sharpless.

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  • Required Course (3 credits)

    Immigration Law (3 credits), including the 1L elective. This course is offered at least once a year.

  • Distributional Courses (at least 6 credits)

    Students must take at least one class from each of the two following lists. Students may take multiple courses from each list:

    List A

    • Administrative Law (4 credits)
    • Constitutional Law II (4 credits)

    List B

    • Advanced Immigration Litigation Seminar (2 credits)
    • Business, Sports, and Entertainment Immigration Law (2 credits)
    • Democracy, Human Rights, and Immigration (2 credits)
    • Immigration, Ethnicity and Public Policy Seminar (2 credits)
    • Immigration Clinic (6 credits)
    • Topics in Citizenship and Immigration Policy (2 credits)
    • Immigration-related independent study (capstone paper) (2 credits). The cap-stone paper may be written in connection with any of the required, distribu-tive, or elective courses or as an independent study with affiliated faculty. The topic of a capstone paper must be approved by an affiliated faculty member as relating to immigration law, policy, or procedure.

  • Elective Courses (Optional–up to 5 credits)

    Students may count toward the area of focus credit hours from the following elective courses with the exception that only one experiential course (including the Immigration Clinic) can count toward the area of focus:

    Family Law (3 credits)
    Health Rights Clinic (6 credits) (experiential)
    Human Rights Clinic (6 credits) (experiential)
    International Human Rights Law (3 credits)
    International Law (3 credits)
    Labor Law/Employment Law/Labor and Employment Law (2-3 credits)
    Legislation (3 credits)
    Litigation Skills (6 credits) (experiential)
    Substantive Criminal Law (3 credits)

Video image of roundtable discussion

Click here to watch a roundtable discussion on the Immigration, Asylum, and Citizenship Areas of Law focus.

Sample Courses of Study

Sample #1

Immigration Law (3 credits)
Administrative Law (4 credits)
Advanced Immigration Law Seminar (2 credits)
Capstone paper as an independent study (2 credits)
Constitutional Law II (4 credits)

Total: 15

Sample #2

Immigration Law (3 credits)
Business, Sports, and Entertainment Immigration Seminar (2 credits)
Constitutional Law II (4 credits)
Immigration Clinic (6 credits)

Total: 15


Faculty Coordinator

Rebecca Sharpless, Professor of Law and Director, Immigration Clinic

Affiliated Faculty

Rachel Maremont
Kunal Parker
Alejandro Portes
Irwin Stotzky
David Abraham (Emeritus)


Register for this Area of Focus