portrait of William H. Hastie

William H. Hastie

For over 40 years, the University of Wisconsin Law School's William H. Hastie Fellowship Program has provided aspiring scholars an outstanding opportunity to prepare for a career in law teaching. The Fellowship reflects a commitment to diversity and inclusion in the legal profession and especially encourages applications from candidates of color and other underrepresented communities in the legal academy.

The Hastie Fellowship is a two-year program. Fellows pursue a scholarly agenda of their choice, typically prepare two pieces for publication, and receive mentoring in both their teaching and scholarly work.

The University of Wisconsin established the Hastie Fellowship in 1973. It honors William H. Hastie (1904-1976), a lawyer, teacher, jurist and civil rights advocate who championed the importance of high-quality legal education. University of Wisconsin Law School Professor James E. Jones, Jr. (1924-2014), well-known as a leading expert in labor law and as the architect of several significant programs aimed at achieving greater racial equality in the work force, was a moving force in creating this program.

The Program

The Hastie Fellowship Program encourages scholarship in the full range of law studies. Wisconsin has a particularly strong tradition supporting studies of the law in action and interdisciplinary work. Fellows are encouraged to take full advantage of long-established ties between the law faculty and faculty in other disciplines, and they will have access to the vast resources of the entire University.

Each Hastie Fellow, before beginning work, establishes a relationship with a faculty member who will serve as the Fellow's principal research advisor. The Fellow may also be paired with a second mentor and will have many opportunities to engage with additional members of the faculty, including members of the Hastie Fellowship Committee.

Hastie Fellows devote the majority of their time to their own research agenda, researching and writing scholarly articles with support from a faculty advisor and the Hastie Fellowship Committee. Typically, a Fellow prepares two publishable articles during their time in residence, and relies upon these articles in their applications for law teaching positions. Hastie Fellows can also receive an LL.M. degree based upon the scholarly work they complete during the fellowship.

Another important aspect of the Hastie Fellowship Program is helping each Fellow develop strong teaching skills. Fellows have opportunities to observe teaching in their subjects of interest and discuss strategies with faculty members. In addition, Fellows typically elect to teach a course or seminar in their area of interest in the final semester of the program.

Fellows are also encouraged to become involved in the rich intellectual and social community of the Law School. For example, Fellows are welcome to attend faculty workshops, colloquia, and social gatherings; to engage with the many scholars and public officials who visit the Law School each year; and to participate in a range of student-sponsored activities.

Fellowship Term

Hastie Fellows will be appointed for a term of two years. The term and internal sequence of the Hastie Fellowship Program are designed to accommodate the needs for intensive research and writing, participation in the hiring process of law schools, and gaining teaching experience:

  • The first year of the program is devoted primarily to scholarship.
  • By the fall of the second year, Fellows should be sufficiently advanced in their research to submit their applications to the law teaching market.
  • The final semester in residence focuses on providing, whenever possible, a teaching experience and finishing the Fellow's publications.

During the term of the appointment, Fellows are required to be in residence in Madison and enrolled at the University of Wisconsin Law School, with a commitment to participating fully in the life of the Law School.

Application Process

The goal of the Hastie Fellowship Program is to contribute to diversity and inclusion in American law school teaching based on experience in and understanding of this country. For that reason, the Hastie Fellowship Committee strongly prefers applicants who have substantial life experience in the United States and whose basic law degree is from an accredited American law school.

Application Deadlines

Application materials for the Fall 2021 Hastie Fellowship Program will be accepted starting October 1, 2020. 

Deadline for Fall 2021: February 1, 2021

Required Materials

To apply for the Hastie Fellowship Program, the following items should be submitted.

Email the following items as PDF attachments to the Graduate Programs Office at GPO@law.wisc.edu:

  • Personal statement: Please explain your interest in legal scholarship and teaching. Please include how your participation would contribute to the Program's goals of increasing diversity and inclusion in the legal academy.
  • Resume or curriculum vitae
  • Research proposal: Please describe, in two to three single-spaced pages, the research you plan to pursue during the Hastie Fellowship. In addition to describing your general research interests, the proposal should identify two specific scholarly works that you expect to develop during your time in residence.
  • Two or three letters of reference (emailed by referrees)

Mail the following items:

  • Official transcripts from all higher education institutions attended, mailed to:

    University of Wisconsin Law School

    Attn: Graduate Programs Office

    975 Bascom Mall, Room 3222

    Madison, WI 53706 

Remuneration and Support Services

Fellows are provided a stipend, currently at $48,000 per year, which is increased from time to time to reflect the local cost of living, and a research support fund (currently $4,000 per year for each year of the fellowship). Complete fringe benefits are available for a modest cost and may include medical insurance, dental care, and life insurance.

In addition to the stipend, the Law School furnishes support services. Each Fellow is provided a private office. A desktop computer and printer are provided, as are office supplies and photocopying.

Contact Us

If you have any questions, please contact the Graduate Programs Office.

Phone

608-262-9120

Mailing Address

University of Wisconsin Law School
Attn: Graduate Programs Office
975 Bascom Mall
Madison, WI 53706

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