Southwestern Law School Los Angeles, CA
Southwestern Reporter

May 2007

 

Dorsey High School Students Get a Lesson in Law at Southwestern

Dorsey High School Students

For the second year of Southwestern's Minority Outreach Program, students from Dorsey High School spent a late-April morning at the law school learning about negotiation. Professors Isabelle Gunning, Karen Smith, Katherine Sheehan, and Laura Dym Cohen, along with students from the Muslim, Black, and Latino Law Students Associations, helped organize the event. "It came from recognizing the need for more minority students in law school," third-year day student A.D. Williams said. "The goal of the program is to give these students a different image of lawyers than what they are used to seeing in the hope they realize that they can pursue law as a career regardless of their circumstances. Its one thing for the kids to hear about it, but the impact is so much greater when they see law students who look, dress, and talk just like them."

The Minority Outreach Program aims to connect with high schools (and community colleges), especially those with a high percentage of minority and working class students, and excite them about law school generally and Southwestern in particular, Professor Gunning explained.

Professor Gunning

"I hope that the students will feel that law school is something that they are capable of doing and something at which they will excel," Professor Gunning said. "In addition, the high school students see our law school students of all colors and backgrounds working together successfully."

Professor Gunning described the concept of alternative dispute resolution to the teens, members of Dorsey Law and Law Enforcement Magnet programs, as "whatever means to avoid a trial." "You all negotiate all the time," she said. "You and a friend come to an agreement on what movie you want to see - this is problem solving. Or you might try to convince your parents to let you stay out late at a club - this can be adversarial."

Persuasive arguments are essential to getting what you want, Professor Gunning explained. Lawyers do similar things, except they work for their clients' needs and wants as opposed to their own. Armed with this information, the Dorsey students were given facts of a fictitious case involving high school twins - both athletes, one a scholar - injured in a car accident that isn't their fault. Before the students were divided into groups of four, each with two negotiating for the plaintiffs and two for the insurance company (defendant), the groups representing each side were advised. Robert Mena, Assistant Director of Student Affairs, told the plaintiffs' "attorneys," "You guys are lawyers. Go out and get them their money." Each group of four had 10 minutes to negotiate a settlement for both plaintiffs.

"I hope that what the students learned is that negotiation is a skill they already know something about and can do, and that it is an essential lawyering skill," Professor Gunning said. She pointed out that students often assume that law is all about trial work, and showing them this other side of what lawyers do may interest those who might have otherwise shied away from it.

 

FACULTY ACTIVITIES

PROFESSOR RONALD ARONOVSKY
  • Speaker, "The Unsettled State of Contaminated Property Law: A New Paradigm for Private Clean-up Cost Disputes," Faculty Development Speaker Series, Penn State Dickinson School of Law
PROFESSOR PAUL BATEMAN
  • Lecturer, Judicial Opinion Writing Seminar for Washington State Growth Management Appellate Board and other judicial officers, National Judicial College, Olympia, WA
  • Lecturer, Logic and Opinion Writing Seminar for judges from State Appeal, Circuit, Superior and Tribal Courts, National Judicial College, Reno, NV
  • Honored for 15 years of dedicated service as a faculty member, National Judicial College
PROFESSOR ALAN CALNAN
  • Quoted in "Chasing justice in pet-food lawsuits: Beloved friend or simply property?" The Philadelphia Enquirer (reprinted in other local newspaper and websites)
ASSOCIATE DEAN CHRISTOPHER CAMERON
  • Quoted in "Court backs employees who missed breaks," Los Angeles Times
PROFESSOR CATHERINE CARPENTER
  • Participant, ABA Accreditation Committee Meeting, ABA Section on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, Chicago, IL
  • Facilitator, Conclave on Legal Education, ABA Section on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, Chicago, IL
PROFESSOR SILVIA FAERMAN
  • Co-Chair, "Teaching Latin American Law - Themes, Approaches, Materials," Latin American Law Workshop, Whitney R. Harris Institute for Global Legal Studies, Washington University Law School
PROFESSOR MICHAEL FROST
  • Lecturer, Judicial Opinion Writing Seminar for Washington State Growth Management Appellate Board and other judicial officers, National Judicial College, Olympia, WA
  • Lecturer, Logic and Opinion Writing Seminar for judges from State Appeal, Circuit, Superior and Tribal Courts, National Judicial College, Reno, NV
DEAN BRYANT GARTH
  • THE INTERNATIONALIZATION OF PALACE WARS (with Y. Dezalay; University of Chicago Press, 2002), Korean translation (Greentree Publishing, 2007)
PROESSOR DAVID KOHLER
  • Panel Moderator, "Video in the Digital Age," Hot Topics in Intellectual Property, Duke University (remarks will be published in the DUKE LAW AND TECHNOLOGY REVIEW)
  • Moderator, "The Court System and the Media," Armenian Bar Association Annual Meeting, Santa Monica
  • Panelist, "Surgery on Dinosaurs: The Future of the Media Lawyer," 20th Annual Media and the Law Seminar, Lawrence, KS
PROFESSOR ROBERT LUTZ
  • Organizer, Moderator and Commentator, "International and Foreign Law in Courts: The U.S. Controversy and the Foreign Perspectives," Spring Meeting, ABA Section of International Law, Washington, D.C.
  • Speaker, "The International and National Legal Framework for Evaluating Anti-Terrorism Strategies: An Analysis of Critical Issues," Department of Public Policy, School of Public Affairs, UCLA
  • Speaker, "Workshop for Latin American Law Professors," Latin American Law Workshop, Whitney R. Harris Institute for Global Legal Studies, Washington University Law School
  • Meeting Chair, ABA Task Force on International Trade in Legal Services, Washington, D.C.
  • Meeting Participant, American Bar Foundation Fellows' Advisory Research Council, Chicago, IL
  • Meeting Participant, U.S.-India Trade Policy Forum, Washington, D.C.
  • Invited Member and Attended Inaugural Meeting, Joint Editorial Board for International Law of the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, Washington, D.C.
  • Inducted as Life Member, American Law Institute

PROFESSOR JONATHAN MILLER
  • Panelist, "The Past, Present and Future of Human Rights in Argentina: Legal and Political Perspectives," Latin American Center, Professor Richard Falk's International Human Rights course, UCLA
  • Presenter, "An American Comparativists Experience with an Argentine on Death Row in Texas," Latin American Law Workshop, Whitney R. Harris Institute for Global Legal Studies, Washington University Law School
  • Panel Chair, "Criminal Procedure Reform in Mexico," ABA Section of International Law Spring Meeting, Washington, D.C.
PROFESSOR AUSTEN PARRISH
  • Litigating Canada-U.S. Transboundary Harm (with S. Hsu), selected for inclusion, Harvard-Boalt-UCLA Workshop for Junior Environmental Scholars (will present paper at Harvard Law School)
  • Quoted in "Pollution ruling may spark suits; Climate change liability charges loom," Business Insurance
PROFESSOR ROBERT PUGSLEY
  • Quoted regarding Paris Hilton's jail sentence for probation violation, Los Angeles Times and N.Y. Daily News
  • Interviewed regarding U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding the 2003 Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act, WNDB (Daytona Beach)
  • Interviewed regarding Parker v. District of Columbia, which upheld the right to own a handgun under the Second Amendment, "Dateline Washington," Radio America Network
PROFESOR MYRNA RAEDER
  • Participant, ABA Criminal Justice Section Magazine Board and Juvenile Justice Committee, and ABA Commission on Youth at Risk Spring Meetings, Washington, D.C.
  • Speaker, "Evidentiary Issues in Family Violence Cases," Judicial Institute, White Plains, NY
PROFESSOR GOWRI RAMACHANDRAN
  • Keynote Speaker and Panelist on gender-specific attire requirements in the legal profession, "National Pantsuit Day," University of Denver Sturm College of Law
PROFESSOR ANGELA RILEY
  • Panelist, "Indigenous Women and Good Native Governance," Feminist Jurisprudence Panel, Santa Clara University School of Law
PROFESSOR LON SOBEL
  • The Law of Ideas in NIMMER ON COPYRIGHT (LexisNexis, 2007)
  • Speaker, "How Lawyers Use Entertainment and Intellectual Property Law Treatises and Books in the Day-to-day Practice of Law," West Publishing Company Sales Rep Meeting, Los Angeles
  • Speaker, "The Law of Ideas," California CEB Program on Entertainment Industry Litigation, Los Angeles
  • Speaker, "Ethics for Entertainment Lawyers" and "Motion Picture Production Issues," Entertainment Law 202, Chicago Bar Association and ABA Forum on Entertainment & Sports Law, Chicago, IL
PROFESSOR DENNIS YOKOYAMA
  • Recipient, Lifetime Achievement Award, Asian Pacific American Law Students Association


ADJUNCT FACULTY

PROFESOR JOSEPH ESPOSITO
  • Appointed Head Deputy, Major Narcotics Division, Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office
PROFESSOR JEFFREY LENKOV
  • Recipient, 2007 Outstanding Alumni Award, Northern Illinois University College of Law

ABA - American Bar Association
AALS
- Association of American Law Schools
LACBA
- Los Angeles County Bar Association
NALP
- National Association for Law Placement

 

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Southwestern Law School is a member of the Association of American Law Schools and is fully approved by the Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar of the American Bar Association (321 N. Clark Street, 21st Floor, Chicago, Illinois 60654, Tel: 312.988.6738). Since 1911, Southwestern has served the public as a nonprofit, nonsectarian educational institution. Southwestern does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, age, religion, national or ethnic origin, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, or prior military service in connection with admission to the school, or in the administration of any of its educational, employment, financial aid, scholarship or student activity programs. Non-discrimination has been the policy of Southwestern since its founding.