Law School to Open Legal Clinic

UofL President James Ramsey and law school dean James Chen announced plans to open the clinic during a news conference on Tuesday, April 8 at the Legal Aid Society.

The University of Louisville's Brandeis School of Law is preparing to open the first Law Clinic in the history of legal education in Louisville in fall 2008. This clinic will enable the law school to transform its entire program of education in a revolutionary fashion. It will refocus legal education as a primarily (or even exclusively) classroom-based endeavor into an active, hands-on enterprise of learning by doing.

The Law Clinic epitomizes the University of Louisville's commitment to preparing its graduates for instant and lasting impact in the workplace and the community at large. Dean Jim Chen remarks, "There simply is no better way to learn the law than handling real cases and representing real clients." The Law Clinic will assign students to individual clients and individual cases. Those students will handle those matters under the careful supervision of at least one faculty member who is responsible for overseeing the Clinic's operation and managing its case load. This faculty member will be Stallings Professor of Law Lars S. Smith.

Lars S. Smith will act as director of the University of Louisville's law clinic during the 2008-09 school year. "Lars Smith brings talent, experience, and vision to the University of Louisville Law Clinic. Throughout his academic career, he has maintained solid footing in the world of law practice. Professor Smith's experience in business and intellectual property law makes him uniquely well suited to supervise clinical operations that advance community development and assist lower-income individuals, entrepreneurs, small businesses, and nonprofit organizations," explains Dean Chen.

Dean Chen welcomes the addition of the clinic to the law school's educational arsenal, "At a time when American legal education is struggling mightily to find a way to become more relevant to the needs of the legal profession and the entire world's thirst for the administration of justice and the rule of law, the University of Louisville has the opportunity to lead the legal academy in placing clinical education at the very core of the law school experience."