Educating the Invincibles: Strategies for Teaching the Millennial Generation in Law School

Emily A. Benfer, Wake Forest University School of Law
Colleen F. Shanahan, Columbia Law School


Each new generation of law students presents its own set of challenges for law teachers seeking to develop competent and committed members of the legal profession. This article aims to train legal educators to recognize their students’ generational learning style and to deliver a tailored education that supports the development of skilled attorneys. To help legal educators better understand the newest generation of law students, this article explores the traits associated with the Millennial Generation of law students, including their perspective on themselves and others, on education and on work. It then provides detailed and specific strategies for teaching millennial students. Though we developed these strategies in a clinical setting, they apply in both the clinical and classroom setting. As this article demonstrates, if well supported and motivated, the Millennial Generation will include extraordinary attorneys who advance the legal profession to new heights.