Law School Briefs - 3/27/13

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Law School Briefs

Law School Briefs highlights news from law schools in Indiana. While Indiana Lawyer has always covered law school news and continues to keep up with law school websites and press releases for updates, we gladly accept submissions for this section from law students, professors, alumni, and others who want to share law school-related news. If you’d like to submit news or a photo from an event, please email it to Marilyn Odendahl at, along with contact information for any follow-up questions at least two weeks prior to the issue date.

IU McKinney financial event bringing political standouts

A former Reagan administration official will join a group of academic, government and business leaders for Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law’s national symposium on the Law and Financial Crisis.

Peter J. Wallison, who formerly served as the general counsel for the U.S. Department of the Treasury and later White House counsel during the Ronald Reagan administration, will participate on a panel examining the law’s role in causing the Great Recession.

Wallison, currently the Arthur F. Burns Fellow in Financial Policy Studies at the American Enterprise Institute, was tapped to serve on the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, created as part of the 2009 Fraud and Enforcement Recovery Act.

The symposium, sponsored by the Indiana Law Review, will be from 8 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. April 5 in Inlow Hall. Attendees can earn continuing legal education credit.

Former U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh will give the keynote address at 8:30 a.m. He was chairman of the Subcommittee on Security and International Trade and Finance of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs.

For more details or to register, visit

IU McKinney adds to curriculum with criminal law certificate

Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law is offering a new graduate certificate in criminal law. The certificate will serve as a gateway to practicing in the criminal law field.

McKinney associate professor Yvonne Dutton, who will oversee the program, stated in a press release, “It will enable students interested in careers in criminal law to focus their studies and obtain the expertise necessary to excel in their chosen field. It will also help them demonstrate their criminal law expertise to potential employers.”

The certificate will draw upon the law school’s upper-level criminal law courses, covering such areas as criminal sentencing, cybercrime and death penalty, as well as the many clinics and externships available in criminal law. In addition, the students will be able to connect with the McKinney alumni who work in criminal law.

Valpo Monsanto Lecture Series to welcome OSU law professor

The Monsanto Lecture Series will continue April 12 with a talk by Martha Chamallas, the Robert J. Lynn Chair of Law at The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law.

Her presentation, “Institutional Responsibility for Sexual Exploitation: Can Tort Law Deliver Social Justice?” will concentrate on the need to reform tort law to address systemic sexual abuse by focusing on revamping the tort concept of vicarious liability.

Chamallas teaches torts, employment discrimination law, and gender and the law. She has written more than 40 book chapters, articles and essays.

The lecture will be from 4 to 5 p.m. in Wesemann Hall. It is open to the public but registration is required. For more information or to RSVP, visit

The Monsanto Lecture Series is endowed by a gift from the Monsanto Fund. The lecture series was made possible by 1953 graduate Richard Duesenberg who served as senior vice president, general counsel and secretary at Monsanto Co.

2 Indiana schools in top 25 of US News law school rankings

Two of Indiana’s four law schools placed in the top 25 of the recently released U.S. News & World Report’s 2014 Best Law Schools rankings.

Of the 194 accredited law schools reviewed, the Notre Dame Law School was ranked No. 23, down from last year’s ranking at No. 22; Indiana University Maurer School of Law rose one spot to No. 25.

Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law fell to No. 98 from No. 89 one year ago. However, the school ranked No. 10 in both the areas of health care law and legal writing.

Valparaiso University Law School was listed in the “rank not published” category. U.S. News uses this designation when a school’s numerical ranking falls below the cutoff point.

The methodology for calculating a school’s ranking was altered this year to include the schools’ success in helping graduates find legal jobs. U.S. News drew upon the more detailed jobs information that law schools are now required to report to the American Bar Association.

Data was collected in fall of 2012 and early 2013.

Valpo appoints Bodensteiner as interim dean of law school

Professor Ivan Bodensteiner has been appointed interim dean of the Valparaiso University Law School. He assumed his new duties March 13, following the resignation of longtime dean Jay Conison.

A 1968 graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, Bodensteiner joined the Valparaiso University faculty in 1972. He served as dean of the law school from 1985 to 1990, and he filled a one-year term as acting dean from 1997 to 1998.

Bodensteiner developed Valparaiso’s pro bono program and served as director of the school’s clinical program. He is a member of the Indiana and Colorado bars, and he remains active in civil rights litigation.•


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  1. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  4. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  5. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.