The Office of Student Life

Elevating the Student Experience

The Office of Student Life offers a wide variety of services, including formal programming and individualized support, for individual students and organizations.

Vanderbilt Law students will find ample opportunity to build their leadership skills, launch new initiatives and organizations, and forge their own paths. The Office is here to help students take full advantage of their time in school.

Knowing that life does not stop in law school, the Office also offers non-clinical general and situational counseling and referrals to campus resources, whether students are looking for stress-reduction help or experience a major life trauma, illness, substance abuse, or mental health event.

co council

The office oversees the Co-Counsel Program at Vanderbilt Law, where incoming students are assigned to an upper-class mentor. These mentors are there to smooth the transition into law school and ensure students are socially connected, informed, and prepared to be successful during their first year of law school.

Each incoming student is also part of a larger “circuit” that holds social gatherings, offers service opportunities in the broader Nashville community, and provides academic and career support. In addition to easing first-year students' transition to law school, these circuits are designed to foster the development of relationships among students in different academic sections and years.

Organization Support

At Vanderbilt Law, we have over 50 Student Organizations that range from identity groups to academic and special interest groups. Their programming plays a significant part in shaping the student experience and contributing to Vanderbilt Law School's unique community. Weekly events include social gatherings, peer workshops, alumni panels, and major speaker events. The Office of Student Life is here to assist with everything from event planning to financial management.

Community Service

Vanderbilt Law students are continuously volunteering and finding ways to engage in the local community. Each year, the Vanderbilt Bar Association Community Service Chair schedules different opportunities in which students can participate.

Student Support Resources

  • Orientation Week

    The Office of Student Life creates and implements the Orientation Week programming at Vanderbilt Law School. Orientation is a mix of optional and mandatory sessions focusing on success inside and outside the classroom. Programming is centered around building community, providing tools for academic success, and knowledge of campus and community resources.

    Sample J.D. Orientation Schedule | Sample LL.M. Orientation Schedule

  • Wellness at Vanderbilt Law

    Law school can be challenging and stressful at times, and it’s important for students to take care of themselves. The Office of Student Life, in partnership with the Vanderbilt Bar Association Wellness Chair, offers wellness-related programming throughout the year with workshops, wellness classes, and community events.

    We encourage students to recharge and unwind in our Wellness Room, located on the bottom floor of Vanderbilt Law School. This room is equipped for group meditation, yoga, and as a general place of relaxation.

  • International Student Support

    The Office provides cultural adjustment support, advising, and general programming to our international students at Vanderbilt Law School. Students are encouraged to use the Office of Student Affairs as a resource for their needs. We also join with other campus partners to ensure our international students excel during their time at school.

  • Assistance to Students with Disabilities

    The Office of Student Life works closely with the Student Access Center to provide reasonable accommodations for students consistent with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

    Students seeking accommodations for any type of disability are encouraged to contact Student Access Services. Services include, but are not limited to, extended time for testing, assistance with locating sign language interpreters, audio textbooks, physical adaptations, notetakers, reading services, and reasonable accommodations for housing and dining. Accommodations are tailored to meet the needs of each student with a documented disability.

  • General Counseling and Student Crisis Management

    The Office of Student Affairs is the place students come if they are struggling with non-academic issues during the course of their time at Vanderbilt Law. In addition to providing general counseling, the office provides referrals for medical or psychological assistance when necessary. We often serve as a central hub and coordinate with faculty and appropriate campus resources when students experience a crisis or traumatic life event. 

Meet the Team

  • Michelle Kovash

    Michelle Kovash

    Director of Student Affairs

    Pronouns: She | Her | Hers

  • Jennie Stumpf

    Jennie Stumpf

    Program Coordinator for Student Engagement & Community

    Pronouns: She | Her | Hers

  • Ashley Sasser Gray

    Ashley Sasser Gray

    Senior Administrative Assistant for Student Organizations & Publication

    Pronouns: She | Her | Hers

Have Questions?

Email the Office of Student Life