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Future JD Students

Bora Laskin Faculty of Law, Lakehead University

Mailing address: 955 Oliver Road, Thunder Bay, Ontario P7B 5E1
Physical address: 401 Red River Road, Thunder Bay, Ontario
Phone: 807.346.7866
Website: law.lakeheadu.ca | Email: law@lakeheadu.ca

View Important Information for Applicants to Ontario Law Schools


Lakehead University ImageThe Bora Laskin Faculty of Law at Lakehead University is Canada's youngest and smallest law school. Located in Thunder Bay, Ontario, and situated in the historic Port Arthur Collegiate Institute built in 1909, the law campus overlooks Lake Superior and the Sleeping Giant.

We provide the highest standard of legal education, where knowledge of the law is fused with practical application. Our program focuses on the realities of living and working in the North: on Aboriginal issues, natural resources and the environment, and the needs of small firm practice.

Our vision is to prepare law students to serve their community.

Our focus is on

  • skills training throughout the three-year JD program, applying theory directly to the practice of law;
  • Aboriginal law and issues of justice;
  • environmental and natural resources law; and
  • a foundation in the essentials of small firm and solo practice.

Our advantage is

  • small class sizes,
  • professors who challenge and engage students and have a passion for teaching, and
  • our Integrated Practice Curriculum (IPC) that fuses practice with theory—this means our students graduate practice ready, without the need to article.

Student Body

Our student body is composed of approximately 50 percent students from Northern Ontario (NW and NE Ontario combined), as well as an additional 23 percent from small-town and regional Ontario and Canada.

Seven percent of our students are of Aboriginal heritage, and we strongly encourage Aboriginal students from across Canada to apply to our program.

We do not have any international students and, as our mandate is to train lawyers for the North, it is unlikely this will change in future years; however, we do accept applications from prospective students if they fit our mandate.


With our small class size of only 60 students each year, our professors and staff know all of the students by name. Our professors challenge and engage students and are committed to teaching the law. All full-time faculty are tenure-track professors.


The first-year program for all students is mandatory. Students are split into two sections for the majority of their classes. Every student will have mandatory Aboriginal law courses in both their first and second year, and Aboriginal law will be woven into all courses where appropriate.

Students will experience our innovative program designed to prepare them for all types of legal roles. With a focus on small firm practice, we support our students to become thoughtful and effective lawyers in all environments. Our students are experiencing success on Bay Street, clerking for the Superior Court of Justice, and working in smaller law firms, government counsel offices, and legal aid clinics across Ontario.

Upper-year electives cover a broad spectrum of interests, with many focused on issues pertaining to the North. We also have strong clinical experience courses. In addition to the required courses, you will take law electives available to both second- and third-year students. Law electives will be selected from a variety of courses such as Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), Environmental Law, Labour and Employment Law, Tax Law, International Law and Human Rights, Trusts, Insurance Law, Remedies, Advanced Criminal Law, and other special topics. The options for electives will continue to grow but students will find a variety of electives that fit their interest.

As part of the Integrated Practice Curriculum, all students will have a full-semester placement in their third year, with the other semester in class. At the end of the day, we seek to prepare our graduates, as best we can, for the practice of law.

Tuition, Financial Aid, and Scholarships

Tuition for 2015–2016 was $16,062.03 plus ancillary fees. Entrance scholarships of up to a third and half tuition are offered to our top candidates based on GPA and LSAT scores.

Career Services

Our mandate is to prepare graduates for the practice of law in smaller centers and in rural regions of Canada where there is a shortage of legal practitioners. However, with a focus on skills training and practical application of the law throughout the three-year program, our graduates will be a valuable asset to any firm, whether on “Main Street” Canada, Bay Street, or Wall Street.

Our Career Services program works with students in developing their résumés, networking skills, and professionalism. Our students, as part of IPC, will also participate in a four-month placement in their third year, which will place them in firms across Ontario, allowing them the full experience of working in a firm in an area of law that interests them. Students will have the option to article after graduation if they wish, but all will be eligible to sit for the bar exams and will be called to the bar after graduation without the need to article.

Admission and Applications

All applicants must apply through the Ontario Law School Application Service (OLSAS).

We review all files holistically: we assess GPA and all transcripts, best LSAT, personal statement, references, and an autobiographical sketch to determine best fit for law and our program. Competitive applicants will have a 75–80 percent plus average in their overall undergraduate programs. The Admission Committee assesses applications in light of all the above criteria.

We strongly encourage Aboriginal applicants from across Canada to apply to our program. Bora Laskin Faculty of Law at Lakehead University is committed to improving Aboriginal representation in the Canadian legal community.

Applications open in August and close November 1.

First-round offers are usually extended in early January, and then rolling admission will continue until the class reaches capacity, usually in midsummer.

Admission is competitive as we receive an average of 1,000 applications each year for 60 spots.

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Apr 17, 2014, 14:56 PM

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