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The Dean’s Fall 2015 Welcome Letter to Students

August 24, 2015

Dear students,

Welcome back to NDLS! Each August I like to take a few moments to give you a brief overview of the new people, programs, and opportunities you will be encountering in the coming year.

Judicial Visitors

First, I am delighted to announce that once again two Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States

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U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sotomayor to speak with Notre Dame Law Students

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U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor will hold a conversation with Notre Dame law students Wednesday, September 2, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in the Patrick F. McCartan Courtroom. She will talk with students about a variety of issues in the conversation moderated by Jennifer Mason McAward, associate professor of law and acting director of the Center for Civil and Human Rights.

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Notre Dame Law School Hosts ICLEO Summer Program

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Shashan DeYoung knew the odds were against her to attend law school. As an African American single mom to twins, she realized her chances for success in law school might be lower than many of her classmates. But she was determined. “Statistically I am not expected to succeed,” she said. “I knew a program like ICLEO would give me the support I needed and would boost my experience, knowledge and confidence.” This summer, Notre Dame Law School hosted DeYoung and 18 other students as Fellows of the Indiana Conference for Legal Education Opportunity (ICLEO) at its Summer Institute Program.

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The Class of 2015: Year of the Volunteer

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When Alisa Finelli, JD ’15, learned that she had won the national Pro Bono Award from the Super Lawyers rating service, she was grateful for the recognition the prize would bring to the Volunteer Lawyer Network, whose director, Mark J. Torma, ND ’97, had nominated her for the prize.

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NDLS Students Reflect on Experience in Law and Religion Moot Court in Venice, Italy

The Notre Dame Law School’s Program on Church, State, and Society sponsored an opportunity for four students to travel to Italy over spring break to participate in the Fondazione Studium Generale Marcianum Moot Court Competition on Law and Religion in Venice. The competition brought together law students from the United States and Europe to argue a case on religious accommodation, and examine issues of religious freedom through a comparative lens.

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Nine Public Interest Summer Scholarships Awarded

Nine students were awarded public interest summer scholarships from the Women’s Legal Forum, Asian Law Student’s Association, and the Environmental Law Society. Seven scholarships were funded by the Women’s Legal Forum with proceeds from the Fr. Mike Show Feb. 25. Two other scholarships are funded by the Asian Law Student’s Association and the Environmental Law Society. The scholarships will help fund the students’ public interest positions in various cities his summer.

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Trial Advocacy Team Wins AAJ Regionals, Advances to Semifinals

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The Law School’s AAJ national team advanced to the final four of the American Association of Justice National Student Trial Advocacy Competition in Pittsburgh this past weekend. In due course, Notre Dame’s Miguel Contreras, Erin Kauffman, Jonathan Mahoney and Adam Zamora defeated the national teams from Belmont, Syracuse, Washington, and Massachusetts before losing a split decision to George Mason. (Stetson University ultimately defeated George Mason to win the competition.)

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The Real "Fighting Irish:” Is Peace Here to Stay?
A Conversation with Former President of Ireland Mary McAleese

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Mary McAleese, former President of Ireland, will have a conversation with the Notre Dame Law School Community titled The Real "Fighting Irish:” Is Peace Here to Stay? Professor Doug Cassel, former Director of the Center for Civil and Human Rights and Notre Dame Presidential Fellow, will moderate the conversation at 3:30 p.m. Monday, April 13, in the McCartan Courtroom in Eck Hall of Law. A reception will follow at 5:00 p.m. in Eck Commons.

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In Memoriam: Charles E. Rice

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God. Country. Notre Dame.

Perhaps no man in recent memory has better embodied the motto inscribed over the door to the Sacred Heart Basilica than Professor Charles E. Rice. A devout Catholic, a Marine, a professor, and a coach, Professor Rice did it all, and always with an abounding sense of humor and purpose. It is therefore with a heavy heart that the Law School announces his passing on February 25, 2015.

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Sean Seymore, ’06 JD, Wins Vanderbilt Faculty Honor

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NDLS grad Sean Seymore has been named a Chancellor Faculty Fellow by Vanderbilt University.

The appointment extends over two fiscal years and includes additional funding designed to support Professor Seymore’s innovative research into how patent law should evolve in response to scientific advances and how the intersection of law and science should influence the formulation of public policy.

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NDLS Offers Online Certificate in Patent Prosecution

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The Certificate in Patent Prosecution is a 12-credit curriculum that prepares students to help inventors get patents. Certificate students learn the basics of patent law and the important skills that a patent agent will need to have: how to write a patent application, how to negotiate with the U.S. Patent Office on behalf of an inventor, how to determine whether an invention is patentable, and the ethical obligations of a patent agent.

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Two NDLS Grads Join the Federal Bench

December saw two Notre Dame Law School grads confirmed to the federal bench. Double Domer Jack Blakey, ’88 B.A., ’92 J.D., was confirmed to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois by the U.S. Senate December 16. Earlier this month Jerry Pappert, ’88 J.D., was confirmed to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

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Innovative Technology and Informatics Course Prepares Grads for Big Changes in the Profession

This spring Ron Dolin, one of the First 100 at Google and the co-founder of Stanford University’s Program for Legal Technology & Design, teamed up with Jason Boehmig, a 2012 magna cum laude NDLS grad and the president and CEO of the legal technology company Ironclad, Inc., to offer a unique and exciting course on Legal Technology and Informatics.

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