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Thomas Bell

Assistant Professor of Political Science

2 East South Street

Galesburg, IL 61401-4999


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Ford Center for the Fine Arts

Pre-Professional & Cooperative Program

How We Work

  1. We're interdisciplinary. A law career requires analytical thinking, careful research, persuasive speaking and writing, and an understanding of historical precedent. Luckily, a liberal arts education is designed to provide just that. Pre-law students study a broad array of majors, such as international relations, political science, history, and economics.
  2. We've got your back. Advising begins your first year and continues through graduation, ensuring that your curricular choices provide a strong foundation for legal study. For the last three years, all Knox students who work with our pre-law advisor were admitted to one or more law schools.
  3. We aim high. Knox students have been accepted into top law schools, like Boston University, Washington University, William and Mary, University of Texas, Northwestern, University of California-Berkeley, Iowa, Illinois, DePaul, Notre Dame, Loyola, American University, and George Washington University. We also partner with Indiana University's Law Scholars Program at the Maurer School of Law, where scholars receive up to $75,000 in aid and other benefits.
  4. We get out of the classroom. Our active Pre-law Club brings in prosecutors and defense attorneys to speak with and mentor students. JusticeCorps is a unique opportunity that gives students hands-on experience with the legal system while helping people with their legal needs.
  5. We explore life after Knox. We know the importance of practical experience, and we'll help you secure internships that prepare you for law school and beyond. Charlotte Young '13 was a Supreme Court Intern, working with the Counselor to the Chief Justice, and is now attending Washington University Law School. Charlie Harned '16 was an intern for the White House and co-founded the Anything is Possible Education Foundation.
  6. We succeed. Marisol Gonzalez-Castillo '15 got a taste of the legal profession as a volunteer with JusticeCorps and is now a law student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Shirlene Love '05 is an intellectual property attorney at MGA Entertainment. Brynna Barnhart '03 is associate director of enforcement for the NCAA.

Learn From Professionals

One of the best ways to learn about the legal profession is from those practicing in the field. We regularly schedule visits and lectures by noted scholars and attorneys, who also meet individually with students interested in legal careers. Recent visitors to the Knox campus have included:

  • William H. Colby '77, Attorney and Author, lead attorney in the precedent-setting Cruzan "right to die" case before the U.S. Supreme court
  • Judge Margaret Ryan '85, United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces
  • Jonathan Turley, Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University
  • Jan Koran '71, former General Counsel of the YMCA of the USA
  • Judge Ruben Castillo, United States District Judge and Member of the United States Sentencing Commission
  • David Schulz '74, Partner at Labine, Sullivan, Coke and Schulz in New York, and a Clinical Lecturer in Law and Co-director of the Media Freedom and Information Access Clinic at the Yale Law School. 
  • Judge Harry Edwards, U. S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia
  • David Bates '78, Environmental Lawyer, Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP
  • Morris Dees, Founder, Southern Poverty Law Center
  • Nadine Strossen, President, American Civil Liberties Union
  • Steven Yandle, Associate Dean of the Yale Law School
  • Thomas Merrill, Professor of Constitutional Law at Northwestern Law School

Where we go

Law schools were our graduates have been enrolled from 2011-15:

  • Harvard University
  • Northwestern University
  • University of Chicago
  • Georgetown University
  • University of Wisconsin
  • George Washington University
  • Boston University
  • Washington University
  • College of William & Mary
  • University of Texas
  • University of California at Berkeley
  • University of Iowa
  • University of Illinois
  • Indiana University (Maurer School of Law)
  • Illinois Institute of Technology Chicago-Kent College of Law
  • DePaul University
  • Notre Dame University
  • Loyola University
  • University of Southern California

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Printed on Sunday, June 16, 2024