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UMaine instructor Adria LaRose on practicing law and instructing media law

Adria LaRose is an instructor at the University of Maine. She currently teaches a course on journalism and media law, CMJ 375.  She has taught this course for 13 years at UMaine. LaRose is also still practicing law alongside teaching this course. As a result, students get a more realistic and accurate law class experience.

LaRose currently works in a private practice at a law firm in Bangor, Maine called Rudman Winchell.

Previously, she worked as an attorney in the San Francisco Bay Area from 1990 to 2005. For undergraduate, she attended University of Missouri in Columbia and got her Bachelor of Arts in anthropology. She graduated Summa Cum Laude in 1987. After her undergraduate, she attended Stanford Law School and received a Juris Doctor. While there, she participated in groups like Women of Stanford Law and Stanford Law Review. She is also a certified mediator in the state of Maine.

This course is great for journalism students, especially those interested in pursuing law. It provides a thorough background in journalism history through a legal lens, discussing the cases that helped carve monumental times in journalism that changed the field forever. The class provides a helpful background in legal jargon, court cases, and historical journalism.

LaRose teaches her class in a kind and inclusive way by encouraging everyone to speak regardless of if the answer  is right or wrong. There are “panels” held throughout the course, similar to a real law school course, and students may analyze the cases using legal frameworks such as the FIRAC method before discussing them in class. The cases for each panel are intriguing in one way or another, so it is certainly not a boring experience. Students are welcome and encouraged to voice their opinions in a place where they will be unjudged and in a safe learning environment.This creates a fluid dynamic in class where students can become active participants without fear of being incorrect.

“I really enjoy teaching, and get a lot of satisfaction helping undergraduates to understand sometimes murky and counterintuitive legal concepts,” LaRose said. 

Legal concepts can get pretty difficult to understand, but LaRose is an excellent teacher that knows how to convey legal concepts and vocabulary in a way that students can comprehend even with little previous knowledge in law. She approaches class in an enthusiastic way that makes an 8 a.m. class not all that bad. 


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