The School of Law’s vision is exemplified by the Howard S. and Alida S. Charney Hall of Law, a capital initiative designed to promote the highest levels of integrated learning, research, collaboration, and practicum, enabling the school to respond to sweeping changes in legal education and practice.

Slated for occupancy in 2018—thanks to a $10 million lead gift from trustee and alumnus Howard Charney MBA ’73, J.D. ’77 and his wife, Alida—Charney Hall will raise the school’s visibility and enable it to expand its reach and impact in Silicon Valley and beyond. This inspiring, eco-friendly building—a modern interpretation of the University’s signature Mission-style architecture—will demonstrate Santa Clara’s support for the vital role lawyers play in advising Silicon Valley clients, in shaping the justice system, and in serving the greater community.

With flexible learning spaces and sophisticated classroom technology, Charney Hall will strengthen the School of Law’s competitiveness, support a high-achieving student body, and attract exceptional faculty. This will amplify the law school’s tradition of excellence where it is most vital—in its people—and pave the way to national recognition. Charney Hall will also enable Santa Clara Law to accelerate its innovative curricular focus—inspired by Jesuit values and emphasizing the complex interrelationship of law, technology, business, justice, and ethics.

Knowledge Center

Panelli Courtroom

Charney Hall Highlights

  • Optimal Size: A 96,000-square-foot facility to serve up to 650 J.D. and 100 non-J.D. students
  • Silicon Valley Connections: More visibility and support for programs that leverage the school’s specializations, creating new opportunities to engage and partner with valley connections
  • Collaborative and Clinical Spaces: Better community access and increased space for hands-on learning and services in areas of high need and impact, including signature clinics, which assist local individuals and startups, thus solving real-world problems
  • Business Alignment: Space for career management, professional development, executive training programs, and entrepreneurship initiatives
  • Knowledge Center: A nexus for digital information facilitated by a staff that specializes in supporting student and faculty research
  • Panelli Courtroom: Centerpiece classroom for foundational courses, academic conferences, and hosting thought leaders for community gatherings
  • Panetta Plaza: Outdoor gathering and reception space serving as a prominent gathering point for the Law School and University communities
  • Distinguished Interview Rooms: Named spaces for the most promising students of Santa Clara Law to meet with prestigious employers
  • Latest Technology: Emerging technologies in the legal and business communities, such as data analytics; decision engines; communication, collaboration, research, and e-discovery tools; legal expert systems; and document automation

Panetta PlazaPanetta Plaza

Lounge Lounge

Anchoring a New, Dynamic Campus Professional District

Given the inherent connections among law, business, ethics, and the social sciences, Charney Hall’s location is ideal—next to the Leavey School of Business and near both the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics and the Political Science Department. With this proximity, Charney Hall will help shape a vibrant professional district that encourages interdisciplinary curricular and programmatic collaboration and innovation, as well as opportunities for greater engagement with the local community.

For example, the University plans to develop a deep integration of law, business, and ethics. Focusing on both Silicon Valley’s technology industry and on global issues will benefit not only law students, but also many more SCU students as the University strives to promote innovation and entrepreneurship in service to humanity.

aerial-view-facing-sw-1800Composite aerial view of Charney Hall anchoring a new professional district on campus


The design of Charney Hall will also support and encourage informal learning beyond the classroom, with inviting spaces where well-connected alumni, friends, and members of the business community can connect and work with students. Flexible classrooms will encourage interaction among students, faculty, and visitors.

Charney Hall’s capacity, location, and design will also enable Santa Clara Law to expand its practice of bringing Silicon Valley and the community to campus while simultaneously making its expertise available to the valley through:

  • Advisory boards, such as the High Tech Law Institute Advisory Board (with members from prominent valley businesses and firms) and the Law Alumni Association Board
  • Events, such as the High Tech Career Fair and the Diversity Gala, for student interaction with alumni, employers, and practitioners
  • Executive education activities, such as the In-House Counsel Institute, co-sponsored activities, and many symposia
  • Experiential learning opportunities, such as those through the Entrepreneurs’ Law Clinic, the International Human Rights Clinic, and the Northern California Innocence Project
  • Speakers for events such as Diversity Lectures and First Year Fridays, and class visits by alumni and practitioners


For more information about supporting Santa Clara Law, including the Howard S. and Alida S. Charney Hall of Law:

Karen Bernosky
Senior Director of Development
Santa Clara University School of Law