Student News

Moot Court Information Session for First-Year Students

The Moot Court Board invites all first-year students to an information session tomorrow at 11:45 in Room 275.  We will discuss first-year oral arguments, the First-Year Oral Advocacy Competition, moot court teams, and the Moot Court Board.  Feel free to bring your lunch and questions.

Law and Literature

Attorney and adjunct professor, Donald Vish, and his class "Law and Literature" are featured in an article by Peter Smith of The Courier-Journal. The article includes quotes from some of his students as well. 

“Everything about this course is about the same thing: What is justice?” instructor Donald Vish tells the students at the Brandeis School of Law.

"They'll never be able to get this course out of their minds (even if) they may not be able to use it in the next few years,” he added after the class. “They know what law and justice look like to lawyers. But I want them to see what it looks like to artists.”

Full Story: U of L course sees law through lens of literature: Local lawyer prime example of the link (Courier-Journal.com, March 7, 2010)

Weekly Academic Success Tip - Be Smart During Spring Break

Spring Break is almost here!  How can you have an enjoyable break and boost your learning for finals?  It is possible – consider the tips below:

  • Spend time with family and friends.   Make sure that you have some fun time and get some relaxation during Spring Break to re-charge your batteries for the last push through classes and exams. 
  • Plan ahead for your studying.   Plan in advance what tasks you need to accomplish.  Plan which days you will do those tasks.  Plan what materials you need to take with you so that you do not forget something.  For example, if you want to work on practice problems, copy them this week so you do not have to lug a study aid around with you. 
  • Be realistic about what you can accomplish during Spring Break.  You are unlikely to study 15 hours a day every day.  Instead of telling yourself that you will accomplish 100 tasks, make a list that you think you actually will accomplish. 
  • Get on a regular sleep schedule before you return to school.  Catch some extra sleep hours to build up your stamina for the last push of the semester.  Take some power naps in the afternoons.
  • Take the time to play in active ways and not just in mental ways.  By exercising, you can release stress and prepare your body for the marathon ahead.  Enjoy the movement and healthy competition.
  • Exercise your brain cells by doing lots of practice questions for each course.  You accomplish several positives - better memory of the black letter law; better understanding of how to apply concepts; faster use of exam taking techniques and strategies; and greater confidence in the nuances of the law.
  • Catch up on any back reading that was not completed before the break.  Also, it is a good time to read for the first two days after break so that you do not feel behind when you start classes up again.
  • Eat healthy foods.   You are in training for exams now.  The better your nutrition during the break, the better your body and brain will serve you.  Keep up the healthy eating once you get back from break so that you will be at the top of your productivity and brain power during the remainder of the semester.
  • Keep on track.   By planning your studying, you can be more productive.  By starting with the hardest task first, you can make your day more pleasant.  By breaking tasks into small steps, you can cross them off more quickly for a sense of accomplishment.  By focusing on your priorities, you can accomplish more of your study tasks. 

1L SPRING BREAK CHALLENGE

Good News:  Spring Break is almost here!  Your brief is done!!!!
        Bad News:  Finals are right around the corner!
               Solution:  Take the 1L Spring Break Challenge!

Spring Break is an important time for law students to review and outline, and can be a real boost to preparing for exams and catching up on study tasks.  So, be sure to take advantage of this time and to TAKE THE CHALLENGE!

Here’s how the Inaugural Spring Break Challenge will work:

  1. Enjoy your spring break (March 15 – 21), but reserve some time each day to catch up on your reading; catch up on your outlining; and to review your outlines (especially Torts and Contracts).
  2. On the Tuesday that you return from Spring Break, take the challenge!
  3. The challenge will consist of several objective-type (non-essay) questions covering one subject – either Contracts or Torts. 
  4. Students taking the challenge will be asked to answer as many questions as they can (in any order) within 30 minutes.
  5. The student who answers the most questions correctly will be crowned the Spring Break Challenge Champion.
  6. The Champion will receive:
    *  $300 Kaplan PMBR certificate towards the purchase of a Complete Bar Review Course or MBE Combination Course
    *  3,200 Lexis Rewards Points
    *  1L Finals Survival Kit

Second and third-place finishers will also be recognized.
 

TAKE THE CHALLENGE
Tuesday, March 23
10:30 a.m.
Room 275

Kudos to the Animal Law Moot Court Team

The Animal Law Moot Court Team, comprising Lauren Bean and Rexena Napier, made it to the semifinal round National Animal Law Moot Court Competition held at Harvard Law School February 5-7.  Their only loss was to the team that won the entire competition.  As this is only the second year UofL has taken part in this competition, this performance was especially noteworthy.

Shaping the Tributary, Building the Pipeline: The Central High School Partnership

The next program in our Diversity Forum Series, "Shaping the Tributary, Building the Pipeline: The Central High School Partnership", will be presented at 11:45 AM on Tuesday, March 9 in room 275.  

PART I -- Overview

  • Professor Laura Rothstein
  • Professor Cedric Merlin Powell
  • Noelle Rao, 3L, Marshall-Brennan teacher
  • Christien Russell, Central High School senior
  • Osiah Graham, UofL Freshman and Harlan Scholar


Part II -- What are the Commitments and How do I sign Up?

  • Kathy Urbach, Assistant Dean for Public Service (Street Law)
  • Mary Jo Gleason, Coordinator of Junior Writing Skills program
  • Professor Sam Marcosson, Marshall-Brennan Coordinator


A free light lunch from Expressions of You available at 11:15 AM outside Room 275.

Trademark Moot Court Team Wins Regional Competition

Congratulations to the Saul Lefkowitz Trademark Moot Court Competition team for winning the South region on Saturday!  The team consists of Mari-Elise Gates, Marilyn Osborn, and Justin Capps and is coached by Adjunct Professor Jack Wheat.  A team consisting of Jessica Richards and Marty Pohl also faired very well.

The region included teams from Duke, Emory, Alabama, Houston, and Vanderbilt among others.  The win was Louisville Law's first ever trademark regional championship.  The team swept all the awards at the competition, taking best brief and best oral advocacy team.

The team now advances to the national finals in Washington, D.C., on March 20.  Arguments will take place at the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Kudos to the Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot Court Team

The University of Louisville was well represented in the pre-Moot International Commercial Arbitration competition at Loyola University on Saturday, February 27 with Elisabeth Luff receiving Runner Up for best oral argument. The team is composed of Elisabeth Luff and James Fischer, who received Runner Up for Top Team. The other team composed of Andrea Fagan and Chris Smith also received great scores, but were just out of medal competition. Two students will be selected to compete next month in Vienna. The team is coached by adjunct professor, Robert Brown.

 

Louisville's Top Lawyers

Louisville Magazine's March 2010 edition features its annual "Top Lawyers" special. Several of our graduates are mentioned including profiles of Diana L. Skaggs, '82, Robyn Smith, '08, Phillip A. Martin, '01, and Ron Russell, '89.

Another article by Dan Crutcher, "Louisville Connectors" (page 52) also features some of our graduates. Carol Butler, '77, appears on the Government Sector list; Robert Brown, '74, and Laura Douglas, '74, appear on the Corporate Sector list; Tori McClure, '95, appears on the Academic Sector list; and Tom FitzGerald, an adjunct professor, appears on the Nonprofit/Civic Sector list. Holly Houston, '94, is also one of Leadership Louisville's Connector.

The magazine's cover features a photograph of Justice Louis D. Brandeis. Inside, there's an article by James Nold Jr. titled "Justice for All" (page 58), which includes a summary of Brandeis's contributions to the courts and society, as well as comments about the recent Brandeis biography by Melvin Urofsky.

"He will certainly go down as Louisville's most cerebral gift to the world, but Louis D. Brandeis --- civil-liberties lawyer, author and U.S. Supreme Court justice --- will also be remembered as a progressive pioneer and conscience of corporate America." ~James Nold Jr. 

 


Weekly Academic Success Tip - Are You Being Efficient?

Time is a precious commodity in law school.  Law students are always looking for shortcuts; however, shortcuts are not the answer.  Instead, you want to use your time more efficiently and effectively.  Here are some suggestions:

  • Learn the material as you read it rather than highlight it to learn later.  Ask questions while you read.  Make margin notes as you read.  Brief the case or make additional notes to emphasize the main points and big picture of the topic after you finish reading.  If you only do cursory "survival" reading, you will have to re-read for learning later which means double work.
  • Review what you have read before class.   By reviewing, you reinforce your learning.  You will be able to follow in class better.  You will recognize what is important for note taking rather than taking down everything the professor says.  You will be able to respond to questions more easily.  Your confidence level about the material will increase.
  • Be more efficient and effective in taking class notes.  Listen carefully in class.  Take down the main points rather than frantically writing or typing verbatim notes.  Use consistent symbols and abbreviations in your notes.  
  • Review your class notes within 24 hours.  Fill in gaps.  Organize the notes if needed.  Note any questions that you have.  If you wait to review your notes until you are outlining, you will have less recall of the material.
  • Regularly review material.   We forget 80% of what we learn in 2 weeks if we do not review.  Regular review of your outlines will mean less cramming at the end of the semester.  You save time ultimately by not re-learning.   You gain deeper understanding.  You have less stress at exam time.
  • Look for the big picture at the end of each sub-topic and topic.  Do not wait until pre-exam studying to pull the course together.  Synthesize the cases that you have read on a sub-topic: how are they different and similar.  Determine the main points that you need to cull from cases for the sub-topic or topic.  Analyze how the sub-topics or topics are inter-related.  If visuals help you learn, incorporate a flowchart or table or other graphic into your outline to show the steps of analysis and/or inter-relationships. 
  • Ask the professors questions as soon as you can.  Do not store up questions like a squirrel storing nuts for winter.  The sooner you get your questions answered, the greater your comprehension of current material.  New topics often build on understanding of prior topics.  Unanswered questions merely lead to more confusion and less learning.