Published on March 12, 2024 by Sofia Paglioni  
Director Kerry McInerney and his team

Samford University Cumberland School of Law was recently listed on Above the Law’s Best Online Master of Studies in Law School Programs and on Princeton Review’s Best Online Master of Studies in Law Programs for 2024.

Blake Hudson, dean of Cumberland School of Law, said, “We are so grateful that Cumberland School of Law’s Master of Studies in Law (MSL) is receiving recognition for what we already knew—that it is a cutting-edge program providing important legal education opportunities to nonlawyers. Director Kerry McInerney and his team have done a phenomenal job staying ahead of changes in the marketplace to ensure that we are providing the utmost value to our students. We are excited to explore innovative new avenues for further developing our MSL offerings in the future.”

Cumberland School of Law’s MSL is a 34-hour master's degree program offered completely online for professionals who have not already earned a Juris Doctor. The program provides four concentrations that emphasize careers in compliance-related careers: financial services regulatory compliance, higher education law and compliance, health law and compliance, and legal operations.  

Withrow Newell, MSL ’22, an instructor at the University of Montevallo, reflected on his experience in the program. He said, “From the outset, Samford’s MSL program was the ideal platform for my graduate studies, blending rigorous legal training with practical applications for nonlawyers. This unique blend of legal knowledge and industry insight has been a key differentiator in my career. The knowledge and skills acquired from the MSL program have been invaluable in shaping my teaching methodology and in providing students with a comprehensive understanding of the legal landscape in our field."

This program prepares students for professional careers through real-world courses and training and encourages graduates to pursue relevant professional credentials from industry-leading organizations. Students are empowered to communicate and interact effectively with attorneys, compliance professionals, and other members of the legal community, while developing core competencies in a specialized field of study which are necessary for professional success.

Jennifer Newman, MSL ’22, senior compliance manager at Cadence Bank, credited the MSL program for offering flexibility and career growth as a working mother. Newman commented. She said, “Cumberland School of Law’s MSL program exceeded my expectations in all facets of the program. As a working mom and professional by day and student by night, I was able to thrive through a flexible and interactive learning experience, thoughtful and practical curriculum and professors with decades of industry expertise. Earning the MSL from Cumberland has not only led to career advancement for me but has also given me the critical thinking and analysis skills necessary to succeed in the increasingly complex and challenging role of a banking compliance professional.”

Learn more about Cumberland School of Law’s Master of Studies in Law

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.