Karla  McKanders

McKanders Karla
  • Associate Professor of Law

  • B.A., Spelman College
    J.D., Duke University

  • Location: Room 78
  • Phone Number: 865-974-5710
  • Email: kmckande@utk.edu
  • Courses Taught: Immigration Clinic, Refugee Law and Policy
  • Additional Information: Curriculum Vitae (pdf)SSRN


Publications of Karla  McKanders

Karla McKanders has taught at the University of Tennessee College of Law since 2008.  She teaches immigration clinic, refugee law and policy, and humanitarian law.

Her research focuses on immigration federalism and asylum law. Among her writings she has explored the constitutionality of recent state and local laws targeting immigrants as well as the legal connections between past discriminatory laws and current anti-immigrant legislation.

Professor McKanders received a Fulbright Scholar grant to lecture in 2011-2012 in Morocco at the University of Mohammad V.  Since her time in Morocco, she has been collaborating with law professors and nonprofit organizations in the Middle East and North Africa addressing clinical legal education and disparities in access to lawyers for immigrant and refugee populations.

Professor McKanders won the UT Chancellor’s Honor, Jefferson Prize 2014. She also received the Community Shares Gardner of Change Award, Spring 2013 and the Bass, Berry & Sims Award for Outstanding Service to the Bench and Bar, February 2013.

Professor McKanders also has a passion for Diversity Issues in Higher Education and has served as the co-chair of the University of Tennessee’s Commission for Blacks since 2013.


Biography of Karla  McKanders


Bridge to Practice: Immigration Simulations, WestSeries (work-in-progress).

Global Issues in Immigration Law, Chapters on:France, Freedom of Movement & Living Conditions of Immigrants (Thomson-West Publishing 2013)(with Raquel Aldana, Beth Lyon, and Won Kidane).

Law Review Articles and Essays

Immigrant Juveniles and the State, N.C. L. Rev. (forthcoming spring 2015).

Anatomy of an Uprising: Women, Democracy and the Moroccan Feminist Spring, Boston Univ. Intern’tl Jour. (spring 2014).

Invited Symposium: Federalism and Immigrant’s Rights, 3:2 Wake Forest J. Law & Policy 333 (2013).

Immigration Enforcement and the Fugitive Slave Acts: Exploring their Similarities,61.4 Cath.L.Rev. 1 (fall 2012).

  • Reprinted in Immigration Nationality Law Rev., (2013).

Invited Symposium: Unforgiving of Those Who Trespass Against U.S.: State Laws Criminalizing Immigration Status, 12 Loy. J. Pub. Int. L 331 (Spring 2011).

  • Reprinted in Immigration Nationality Law Rev., (2013).

Invited Symposium: Unspoken Voice of Indigenous Women in Immigration Raids, 14 J. Gender Race & Just. 1 (fall 2010).

Class Based Coalition Building During the “Post-Racial” Era, 29 St. Louis U. Pub. L. Rev. 473 (2010).

Sustaining Tiered Personhood: Jim Crow and Anti-Immigrant Laws, 26 Harv. J. Rac. & Eth. Jus.  163 (2010).

Invited Symposium: The Constitutionality of State and Local Laws Targeting Immigrants, 31.4 U.Ark. Little Rock L.J. 579 (2009).

Welcome to Hazleton! (“Illegal” Immigrants Beware): Local Employment Immigration Ordinances and What the Federal Government Must Do About, It 39 Loy.U.Chi.L.J. 1 (2007).

Co-Authored Publications

Raising the Bar:  Law Schools and Legal Institutions Leading to Education Undocumented Lawyers, (with Raquel Aldana and Beth Lyon) Arizona State L.J. (2012).

Varying Shades of Grey: Teaching Amongst Generational Difference, (with Praveen Kosuri, Minna Kotkin, Steven Reid, and Dean Rivkin) 17.1 Clinical L. Rev. 1001 (Fall 2010).

Society of American Law Teachers, (with Raquel Aldana and Beth Lyon) SALT Recommendations to the Administration for Immigration Agency Reforms, (June 16, 2009).

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