Southwestern Law School Los Angeles, CA

News Release

April 01, 2005
2005 Adjunct Excellence in Teaching Award

Southwestern is pleased to announce that Professor Amy M. Pellman has been selected to receive the 2005 Adjunct Excellence in Teaching Award. The law school faculty established the Adjunct Excellence in Teaching Award to be presented annually to a member of the adjunct faculty in recognition of distinguished achievement in the performance of the teaching mission. Adjunct faculty members are an integral part of the Southwestern Community, and this award is intended to recognize not only the exceptional teaching contributions of adjunct faculty, but also the continuing commitment of Southwestern to excellence in teaching. The Adjunct Excellence in Teaching Award is also based upon student and faculty nominations

The documentation that supports Professor Pellman’s nomination describes her as "an exceptional teacher who demonstrates a commitment to teaching above and beyond effectiveness in the classroom."

Student nominations noted that Professor Pellman "did not rely solely on books or written materials, she also included guest speakers, class discussions, media lectures, and more importantly, handling of real cases, which not only helped us understand the material better but gave a great preview of what the real world practice would be like." "In particular, I recall one of the classes in which we had a young speaker, who told the class the story of his life, in and out of the Children and Juvenile Court system. Having an actual child who has gone through the system tell us about it was an insight no book or lecture could truly cover." "Her experience and understanding of the cases offered unparalleled insight, which made her lectures even more valuable as they were always accompanied with practical advice, and a true inside look at the system."

Students noted that "As part of our class requirements, each student was assigned to a real client who was in the process of adopting a child. . . . This was my best experience in law school." Students "often feel empowered that they can use their legal expertise to truly make a difference" and "are able to understand what they can do to help impact the community as a law student immediately as well as in the future."

Students commented, "It is often touching, emotional, and enlightening for students as they see how Dependency Court not only protects children, but also creates opportunities for others who wish to care for abused or neglected children." "Professor Pellman encourages students to volunteer or extern at various organizations that serve children." "Every class seems to always produce a few dependency lawyers. And, of course, Professor Pellman is there to encourage and support those who wish to pursue this field."

Students concluded, "It is often hard to find a role model as one enters the adult world. I consider myself lucky to have taken Professor Pellman’s class, since I have found my role model." "It is her passion, her kindness and generosity as a person, professor and attorney that motivate students like me to pursue a career as a child advocate." And one stated, "Professor Pellman had a lasting impact on me."