He completed his freshman year at the University of Santa Clara before entering Sacred Heart Novitiate, a Jesuit seminary in August 1956. Two years later, he took vows of poverty, chastity and obedience.
In 1960, he left the Society of Jesus and enrolled at the University of California at Berkeley. He received his B.A. degree in Classics the next year and then entered Yale Law School, where he graduated in 1964.