Mexican American Law Student Association


The purpose for which this corporation is formed, and for which it shall exist, is to encourage, promote, and further the education of Latino law students.


MALSA was founded in the 1970’s by a group of UNM law students seeking to promote the advancement of Hispanics in higher education. The students’ goal was to build a support network for Hispanic law students by focusing on the academic and social interests and needs of Hispanic students.

Today, MALSA continues its long tradition of advocating for Hispanic students to ensure that they have a rewarding and successful experience at the UNM School of Law.

Throughout the years, MALSA has established itself as one of the largest and most active groups at the UNM School of Law, with a diverse membership of students from different ethnicities, cultures and backgrounds.

Academic Support

To fulfill MALSA’s mission of providing academic support, MALSA offers a variety of programs to assist its members.

Seminars & Programs for 1st year members:

  • Fundamentals of Briefing Seminar
  • Exam Taking Seminar
  • Oral Argument Practice
  • Mentorship Program pairing 1st year students with upperclass MALSA members

In addition, MALSA also encourages its members to attend annual conferences addressing issues facing Hispanic lawyers, law students and their communities.

  • National Latina/o Law Student Conference
  • Hispanic National Bar Association Convention

When possible, MALSA assists students with some of the costs of attending conferences, moot court competitions, and career fairs. MALSA also tries to provide its 3rd year members with scholarships to help with the cost of bar examination preparation courses.

Law School Activities

MALSA takes an active role in areas of concern for Hispanic law students, including issues like minority enrollment at the law school. In addition, MALSA hosts several annual events, which have become a tradition at the law school.

  • Matanza
    The year starts off with the annual MALSA Matanza, which builds on the Mexican tradition of a family/community event to prepare and cook a pig. The law school students, faculty and staff are invited to enjoy the feast, as well as the New Mexico Hispanic Bar and members of the judiciary. The Matanza serves as a community building event for the entire legal community.
  • Fighting for Justice Banquet
    The year finishes with the annual Fighting for Justice Banquet, which honors those who have made outstanding contributions to the Hispanic community. The FFJ banquet takes place in the spring. Traditionally, more than 300 members of the legal community attend the banquet.
  • Speaker Series
    MALSA also hosts a Speaker Series by bringing in speakers on a variety of issues facing Hispanic law students. Past topics have included a critical race theory discussion on how race impacts law school, as well as a discussion on international trade by a former MALSA member.
  • Golf Tournament
    The Annual MALSA Golf Tournament takes places each fall. The proceeds from the event are used to fund the different services that MALSA provides for its members.

MALSA is organized exclusively for charitable and educational purposes within the meaning of 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and subsists predominantly from its own fundraising ventures, with additional support from the New Mexico Hispanic Bar Association, the University of New Mexico School of Law, the University of New Mexico Student Bar Association, and others.