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Posted by David Logan
12/11/2009 at 12:00 AM
I am always happy to spotlight the advantages of being the only law school in the state, and here comes yet another: a top federal judge (who is also a member of our Adjunct Faculty) presided over a constitutional attack on a controversial approach to town/gown frictions.  The summary judgment hearing in University of Rhode Island Students vs. Town of Narragansett was heard in our courtroom and, to top it off, the judge and the lawyers held a Q&A session afterwards—a rare if not unique opportunity for students to get insiders’ perspective on litigation. When the bailiff cried “oyez,...
Posted by David Logan
12/08/2009 at 12:00 AM
I am glad to report that two members of the RWU Law faculty are playing important roles in continuing fallout from the reaction to the 9/11 attacks and the resulting challenge to both the civilian and military justice systems. Professor Jon Shelburne manages to find time in his busy academic schedule (besides teaching core courses, Jon is our Coordinator of External Forensic Competitions), and is now in trial at Camp Pendleton, defending a Marine officer in a court martial that alleges dereliction of duty for failing to adequately investigate allegations that soldiers he commanded had...
Posted by Hala Furst
12/05/2009 at 12:00 AM
Today marks the beginning of the reading period for my last set of fall finals in law school. My nostalgia is predictably overcome by concern that I will fail the two exams I do have. But third year gives you some perspective. The fear that motivated you in first year is totally gone, and the worry about summer jobs etc. that motivated you in second year is long past. The desire to do well and the desire to take a nice long nap is directly at odds, unfortunately. So the question becomes, what does motivate you in your final year, especially when the siren song of “senior-itis” is so lovely...
Posted by David Logan
12/04/2009 at 12:00 AM
Lawyers are understandably interested in how judges are selected.  There is much attention given to appointments to the federal bench, like the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to the United States Supreme Court and current nomination of Rogeriee Thompson to an open seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, but in many states there is controversy about the process for selecting judges, and RI is no exception.  Due to scandals that forced the resignation of two consecutive Chief Justices, Rhode Island voters approved a “merit selection system” in 1994. RWU Law...
Posted by David Logan
12/01/2009 at 12:00 AM
The School of Law recently welcomed the Honorable Margaret H. Marshall, Chief Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, launching our Women Who Lead series, with an address on “Our American Constitutions: Models for the 21st Century.” Born in South Africa, Chief Justice Marshall attended law school in the U.S. and has had a distinguished career, culminating with appointment to her current position a decade ago. She is only the second woman to serve on the Supreme Judicial Court in its more than 300-year history and is the first Chief Justice. In November 2003, she handed down...
Posted by David Logan
11/23/2009 at 12:00 AM
In recent years Massachusetts has become the bar exam of choice for our most of our graduates (surpassing RI), and as a result Mass is now our “reporting state” for the American Bar Association.  The July 2009 results reinforce how well our graduates perform when compared to all takers (which in Mass includes almost 400 graduates of Harvard, Boston College, and Boston University). Besides beating the state rate for all takers by almost 4%, we ran the table by easily topping the state average in the two key categories involving first-time takers (data relied upon by the ABA to measure the...
Posted by David Logan
11/20/2009 at 12:00 AM
For the fifth consecutive year, a leading Rhode Island law firm hosted a cocktail reception for members of the RWU Law Review and our Honors Program.  Past hosts were Hinckley, Allen & Snyder, LLP, Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge, Partridge Snow & Hahn LLP, and Brown Rudnick.  This year the setting was special: a warm fall night, with the crowd spilling out onto the patio adjoining the offices of Shectman Halpern Savage, LLP.  The firm, one of the fastest growing in the state, renovated an old industrial building and turned it into a stunning work space, complete with...
Posted by David Logan
11/16/2009 at 12:00 AM
One of the highlights of fall semesters at RWU Law is the annual visit of the Rhode Island Supreme Court.  The Court comes to campus to preside over the final round of our flagship internal Moot Court Competition, named after a deeply respected member of our faculty, the late Esther Clark. The case involved a sweeping youth curfew in a hypothetical town, which was challenged on the grounds that it violated both substantive due process (the right to travel) and the equal protection clause (unduly burdening a suspect class—minors).  The finalists were 2Ls Amy Broderick and John Meara...
Posted by David Logan
11/13/2009 at 12:00 AM
Our fledgling Immigration Law Clinic has hit the ground running, winning the freedom of a 27-year old Liberian college student who suffered the horrors of the Liberian civil wars, who came to the U.S. as a refugee, then became a permanent resident.  The Department of Homeland Security sought to deport him because of two offenses in RI for which he received no jail time (a receipt of stolen property and assault).  He had spent 10 months in jail before the RWUSOL Immigration Clinic got involved in his case. 3Ls Jessica Grimes and Ashley Ham Pong represented the client in his...
Posted by Kelly Bennett
11/12/2009 at 12:00 AM
One major difference between 1L and 2L year is that you can really get a jump start on investigating internship opportunities.  It’s strange, but already there is rush to upload resumes, cover letters, and begin the application process for internships for the summer.  It’s only September!!! Well, I’m guilty of it too.  I figure there’s no better way to get starting that