Adjunct Professors Support New Grads Preparing for Bar Exam
Southwestern Establishes New Adjunct Faculty Bar Scholarship Fund to Recognize Tremendous Generosity
The dedicated members of the bench and bar who serve on Southwestern's adjunct faculty greatly enhance the curriculum and make a tremendous difference in the education of their students. Each year, a number of these professors also go above and beyond in their commitment to the law school by volunteering to waive their salary and teach without pay. Through a new scholarship program initiated this fall, Southwestern will be able to formally recognize this tremendous generosity while helping graduating students defray the costs associated with applying for and taking the California Bar Exam.
The salaries waived by adjunct faculty will now go to support the Adjunct Faculty Bar Scholarship Fund. Starting in May 2014, Southwestern will use any money accumulated in the fund to award need-based scholarships to students preparing for the July 2014 Bar Exam. Since the "bridge" loans that were previously available to help students cover expenses incurred right after graduation are no longer funded by loan providers, this new scholarship fund is particularly crucial to help fill that gap. While the precise amounts are not yet determined, the law school hopes to make awards to students of approximately $1,500 to defray the costs of applying for the California Bar Exam.
Adjunct faculty who make this scholarship fund possible will be recognized through campus and public announcements and tribute ads in addition to Southwestern's Honor Roll of Donors.
Professor Wayne Levin '88, Chief Strategic Officer and General Counsel for Lionsgate Entertainment Corp., who has taught entertainment law courses since 1995, is pleased about the new fund. "For many years, I've waived my salary as a way to give back to the school," he said. "I think it's a terrific idea to direct that money instead to new Southwestern graduates who are in need of help in covering bar exam-related expenses."
Dean Austen Parrish noted how much adjunct faculty go the extra mile to help Southwestern students. "Our adjuncts contribute tremendously to our programs for very modest pay. And many go beyond that by offering to teach without any monetary compensation," he said. "By formalizing what happens to those funds by applying them to scholarships like these, our 'unsung heroes' will be more appropriately recognized, and our students in need will directly benefit from their generosity."
Professor Harold Flegelman, a partner at Loeb & Loeb who taught Business Transactions: The Art of the Deal for the first time last year - and did so on a volunteer basis - echoed Professor Levin's sentiments. "I teach at Southwestern because I love teaching. It's important to me that I do what I can to help the next generation of lawyers learn the practical skills that they need and are expected by their employers to have. I'm therefore delighted that when I waive my salary, I know it will be going to students who can certainly use it more than I can, as they prepare to take their bar exam and pursue their legal careers."