Law Student Well-Being

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The University of Richmond strives to create a culture of well-being on campus. We aim to create a thriving, collaborative campus culture that reflects our collective commitment to community health.

The University of Richmond School of Law prioritizes the well-being of our students through a combination of education, events, materials, and direct services that focus on the six dimensions of lawyer well-being as identified in The Path to Lawyer Well-Being: Practical Recommendations for Positive Change published by the Institute for Well-Being in Law – Emotional, Intellectual, Occupational, Physical, Social, and Spiritual.

Dimensions of Well-being


Please review the menu below to explore the well-being resources available to students at Richmond Law, the University of Richmond, the Richmond community, as well as national resources.

  • Emotional Well-Being

    Recognizing the importance of emotions. Developing the ability to identify and manage our own emotions to support mental health, achieve goals, and inform decision-making. Seeking help for mental health when needed.

    American Bar Association (ABA) Mental Health Toolkit

    The Mental Health Toolkit is the product of collaboration between the ABA Law Student Division and the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs (CoLAP). The purpose of the Toolkit is to provide caring pre-law advisors, law school administrators, counseling personnel, faculty, students, student leaders, and lawyer assistance programs with a user-friendly resource to deal with mental health and substance use within your school. 

    Conveying a Concern About a Student

    If you are concerned that a student is in immediate danger to their safety or the safety of others, call the police.

    All other types of concern related to the physical, mental and/or emotional health of a student may be reported by filling out this form. This form may be submitted anonymously. When a concern about a law student is reported using this form, it is routed to the Director of Student Affairs for the Law School, Katy Olney. Concerns may also be reported directly to Katy Olney.

    Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

    Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) at the University of Richmond offers a wide range of services. CAPS takes a goal-focused and collaborative approach to mental health services and provides immediate, meaningful help.

    If you are interested in receiving services through CAPS, please complete the registration forms on the CAPS website, which are available during business hours. You will receive an email or phone call following completion prompting you to schedule a Brief Consultation appointment.

    CAPS offers a variety of services in addition to individual counseling. Online self-help options, well-being seminars, group counseling, psychiatric services, and off-campus referrals may all be accessed through CAPS.  

    Dr. Mary Ann Messer, a CAPS counselor, provides psychological services exclusively to Law Students on Wednesday and Friday afternoons. Dr. Messer is available to provide individual therapy sessions for in a private room in the Law Library, in the Well-being Center, or remotely.

    National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

    NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. NAMI provides free, nationwide support services to those seeking help. Services include 24/7 crisis support via text, online chat, and call-in options.

    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

    SAMHSA’s mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America’s communities. SAMHSA’s “Find Treatment” website allows users to easily search for licensed behavioral health and substance abuse professionals by zip code.


    The University of Richmond has partnered with TimelyCare to provide virtual mental health and well-being services for free to all full-time students. Students do not need insurance and do not need to visit Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) to access TimelyCare. Through this partnership, students have access to multiple services including on-demand access to a mental health professional to talk about anything at any time (i.e. anxiety, relationships, depression, school-related stressors, etc.) as well as regular scheduled counseling sessions.

    Virginia Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program (VJLAP)

    The Virginia Judges & Lawyers Assistance Program offers tailored counseling services and support groups to law students who are suffering from mental health disorders and addiction. Their services are 100% free, confidential and non-disciplinary. Seeking help from VJLAP, whether for a current substance abuse or mental health issue or for dealing with a past legal infraction, can allow you to create a positive record of mature and responsible behavior in the face of situations that might otherwise seem to create obstacles to bar admissions.

  • Intellectual Well-Being

    Engaging in continuous learning and the pursuit of creative or intellectually challenging activities that foster ongoing development; monitoring cognitive wellness. 

    Academic Success Program (ASP)

    The Academic Success Program is designed to help new students succeed in their first year of law school. It provides first-year students with specialized instruction in the skills that are unique to the study of law, including case briefing, outlining and exam taking. Instruction is offered through workshops, classes, and individual meetings.

    Disability Services

    A disability is defined as a condition that significantly limits a major life activity. It includes “visible” disabilities that are somewhat easily identifiable, and also “invisible” disabilities, or conditions you may not be able to tell just by observing or interacting with someone. Invisible disabilities may include learning disability, attention disorder, or major depression. Disability is broad and can encompass many conditions and diagnoses depending on how they impact that person.

    Students with disabilities of any kind that affect their academic performance or cognition may be eligible for academic accommodations and may apply for them online. Students who are interested in learning more about accommodations or who have questions about their eligibility should contact the Director of Disability Services, Dr. Cort Schneider

    Law Journals

    Richmond Law has three student-run journals: the University of Richmond Law Review, the Richmond Journal of Law and Technology, and the Richmond Public Interest Law Review. Each journal reviews, edits, and publishes articles and essays written by scholars as well as students. Journals also sponsor academic symposia on topics of interest throughout the year.

    Student Travel to Conferences

    Richmond Law recognizes the value of students participating in conferences and other programs that occur outside of the Richmond area. Participation in these events provides opportunities for not only the students who attend, but to the whole law school when these students return and share the knowledge they have gained. The School of Law has therefore created a Student Travel Fund to help support students who would like to participate in these opportunities.

    William Taylor Muse Law Library

    The Law Library provides resources and services to support the foundation of a modern legal education. Our team of research and tech experts teach, train, and advise students and faculty on tools and sources for successful scholarship and service.

    Access to reference and research services, technology support, course reserves, study aids, and much more is available through the library. A good place to begin exploring Law Library resources is on the LibGuides Landing Page.

  • Occupational Well-Being

    Cultivating personal satisfaction, growth, and enrichment at work; financial stability.

    The Career Development Office (CDO)

    The Career Development Office provides the tools, strategies, and support students need to navigate the employment search. Through a combination of one-on-one advising, small-group interactive workshops and information sessions, mock interviews, recruitment programs, and networking events, the CDO helps students identify and secure summer internships and post-graduate opportunities that fit your interests and goals.

    Students can access an array of video and print resources in the Student Portal for Career Development, as well as view and apply for employment opportunities in LawQuest.

    Financial Aid

    The Financial Aid Office supports students in many ways. They process loans and scholarship awards, provide helpful information about loan repayment, forgiveness, and consolidation, guidance on student budgeting, and answers to questions frequently asked by law students about financial aid. Request an appointment with a personal financial aid advisor to discuss your individual financial needs.

    Student Emergency Fund

    Sometimes students encounter a life-changing moment but don’t have the resources to meet these unexpected needs. This may be a personal or family emergency, an unforeseen expense, or a career opportunity that lies just beyond the student’s means. There are many different programs to assist students, from computing support to housing on campus for students who cannot go home during breaks.

    Through support from the University and its generous donors, the Spiders Helping Spiders initiative helps students with unanticipated expenses and financial emergencies, including access to the University’s Student Emergency Fund.

    MAX by AccessLex

    MAX by AccessLex is a free, multi-faceted personal finance program designed exclusively for law students. MAX provides quick and easy to understand lessons, in-person and online learning options, one-on-one financial coaching from Accredited Financial Counselors, and over $300,000 in scholarship incentives each year to law students nationally. MAX content covers topics from paying for law school to investing for your retirement – and every step in between.

    On-Campus Hourly Employment

    Law students are eligible to seek on-campus employment through the student University Work Program (UWP). On-campus jobs are often ideal for law students, as they can be more understanding of the academic schedule than private employment opportunities. Current UWP openings and associated applications are updated regularly.

    Tax Filing Assistance

    Each March, the Center for Civic Engagement hosts a free on-campus tax clinic to provide tax preparation services to students, staff, and faculty with a household income of $60,000 or less. Interested students can contact the Center for Civic Engagement at (804) 484-1630 for more information.

  • Physical Well-Being

    Striving for regular physical activity, proper diet and nutrition, sufficient sleep, and recovery. Seeking help for physical health when needed.

    Nutrition Services

    University Nutrition Services offers a variety of resources to students, including nutrition counseling with professional dieticianssupport for students with food allergies, and a demo kitchen, plus advice on how students can identify healthy dining choices on-campus. 

    Student Health Center

    The Student Health Center provides evaluation and treatment for illnesses and injuries as well as assistance in managing chronic disease. Services provided by the Student Health Center include individual appointments, pharmacy services, STI testing, tobacco cessation, flu shots, and laboratory testing. 

    The Student Health Center also provides students with access to an after-hours nurse advice line and provides information about off-campus providers for students in need of after-hours care and/or off-campus resources.

    Student Health Insurance

    The University requires enrolled law students to be protected with full health insurance coverage.  The Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) ensures that students have access to comprehensive health insurance and health care while attending the University. 

    University Recreation

    University Recreation enhances the lives of students by providing quality recreational programs and resources. The Weinstein Center for Recreation, located just a short walk from the Law School, contains a state-of-the-art indoor gym, basketball courts, a pool, a racquetball court, and an indoor track. Outside the center students have access to a sand volleyball court, intramural fields, a picnic area, and outdoor walking and running trails. The Weinstein Center also offers fitness classes at no charge to students. Students can view fitness center hours and learn more by downloading and using the University Recreation FusionGo App or Weinstein Center Portal.

  • Social Well-Being

    Developing a sense of connection, belonging, and a well-developed support network while also contributing to our groups and communities.


    At the start of their first year, students are assigned a faculty mentor, a section mentor, and a peer mentor who can provide guidance on course selection, extracurriculars, and other issues. Students meet with their mentors during orientation and then periodically during their time at the law school. Many faculty members also serve as informal advisors to students who are not specifically assigned to them. You are encouraged to seek out faculty members who teach in the areas that interest you. The faculty mentoring program is overseen by Professor Janice Craft, and the section mentoring and peer mentoring programs are overseen by Dean Laura Webb.

    Student Organizations

    There are over thirty-five student run organizations at Richmond Law, including the Student Bar Association (SBA), which is the student governing body at the law school. Student organizations create opportunities for students to connect with each other, grow leadership skills, and learn outside the classroom. 

    Student Center for Equity and Inclusion (SCEI)

    The SCEI seeks to cultivate inclusive communities and empower students to be affirmed in the intersections of their identities and amplify the voices of these populations. To achieve this mission the center is dedicated to enhancing Multicultural, LGBTQ, and First-Generation student experiences on campus.

    The SCEI provides social and transition support for underserved students. We celebrate and support an increasingly diverse student body and promote dialogue between individuals of diverse backgrounds and identities.

  • Spiritual Well-Being

    Developing a sense of meaningfulness and purpose in all aspects of life.

    Carrico Center for Pro Bono and Public Service

    The Carrico Center connects the skills and talents of the Richmond Law student body with the greater Richmond community and a network of regional, national, and international programs.

    Pro bono public (“for the public good”) work is an integral part of what it means to be an attorney. By cultivating such service, the Center for Pro Bono & Public Service not only provides a valuable resource for the community, it also prepares students for a life of purposeful citizenship.


    The Office of the Chaplaincy is committed to the spiritual well-being of our campus community. The Chaplaincy offers opportunities for spiritual practice, pastoral care, and support during times of joy and sadness, as well as throughout life’s everyday stresses and challenges. Chaplaincy staff are available for pastoral care, spiritual guidance, mindfulness practice, meditation, prayer and other forms of spiritual support. All members of the University of Richmond community are welcome, including those of all faith backgrounds and those with no faith or spiritual background

    Modlin Center for the Arts

    The Modlin Center for the Arts presents diverse and vibrant arts experiences that inspire, engage, and enrich the community on- and off-campus. Over seventy events take place at the Modlin Center every year, often at a great discount to students. 

    Outdoor Adventure and Recreation (OAR) Program

    The University of Richmond Outdoor Adventure and Recreation (OAR) program strives to create an inclusive environment that fosters personal growth, environmental stewardship, peer leadership, and multi-dimensional wellness through experiential education programming.

    OAR offers equipment rentaloutdoor trips, and more for the student looking to get out and experience the great outdoors.