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New assistant dean named, school partner to help Haiti, prof studies Belize

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Law School Briefs

Law School Briefs is Indiana Lawyer’s section that highlights news from law schools in Indiana. While we have always covered law school news and will continue to keep up with law school websites and press releases for updates, we’ll 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 send it to Rebecca Berfanger, rberfanger@ibj.com, along with contact information for any follow-up questions at least two weeks in advance of the issue date.

New assistant deanat IU-Indianapolis

Indiana University School of Law – Indianapolis has hired a new assistant dean for student affairs, the school announced Jan. 24.

In his new role, Johnny D. Pryor advises students on academic and personal issues. He is a member of the law school administrative team and provides leadership for the Office of Student Affairs. He oversees academic advising, registration and records, state bar eligibility, student organizations, and other areas affecting the law student experience.

Since 2005, Pryor has helped hundreds of undergraduate students gain admission to some of the most selective law and graduate programs in the world. He served as director of post-graduate studies at Butler University, then he worked as senior assistant director of career services at Dartmouth College before joining the Indianapolis law school’s staff.

He has also served as a member of the steering committee of the Shortridge Magnet High School for Law and Public Policy in Indianapolis, a pipeline program for high school students with an interest in ultimately having careers in the legal profession.

After Pryor graduated from Indiana University Maurer School of Law in 2002, he served as an assistant Clark County prosecutor in Springfield, Ohio. He worked primarily in the civil division providing legal counsel to county boards, departments, and elected officials on areas of law such as employment, real estate, zoning, and contracts. In addition, he handled criminal matters ranging from adult felony cases to juvenile matters.

While in Springfield, Pryor taught law, literature, and critical reasoning as an adjunct instructor at his alma mater, Wittenberg University. He also served as a volunteer coach for the school’s first undergraduate mock trial team.

As a law student, Pryor served as a clerk to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in Washington, D.C., competed as a member of the Indiana University National Trial Competition team, and was later elected to the Order of Barristers.

– IL Staff

Schools partner to help Haiti

“Reclaiming Peace: Power to the girls and women of Haiti” is the theme for this year’s Vagina Monologues, which will be presented at Indiana University School of Law – Indianapolis Feb. 18 and 19 at 7:30 p.m. The performance will be held in the law school’s Wynne Courtroom at Inlow Hall, 530 W. New York St., Indianapolis. Parking will be available in the surface lot next to the law school.

This will be the sixth time in seven years that the law school has hosted this performance.

The event is sponsored by the school’s Feminist Law Society. It will be performed by students from the law school, the Student National Medical Association, and the American Medical Women’s Association of Indiana University School of Medicine.

Tickets are $10 and available either at femlaw@iupui.edu on PayPal.com or at the door. Proceeds will go to the V-Day organization and Legacy House of Indianapolis, a resource for victims of violence and trauma that offers various support groups, therapies, and programs to help victims lead productive, independent lives.

Each year, the V-Day organization supports a different cause involving violence against women and girls. This year, the organization “will highlight the high levels of violence against women and girls in Haiti, and will focus on the increased rates of sexual violence since the devastating earthquake that took place in January 2010,” according to the website, www.vday.org/spotlight2011. “All funds raised through the Spotlight Campaign will be used to support a revolutionary national campaign in Haiti lead by a coalition of women activists – including longtime V-Day activist Elvire Eugene – that will address sexual violence through art, advocacy, safe shelter and legal services.”

– Rebecca Berfanger

ND Law prof studies Belize

Notre Dame Law School professor Jimmy Gurulè recently traveled to Belize to interview 25 prosecutors, defense lawyers, supreme court judges, magistrates, media representatives, leaders of nongovernmental organizations, U.S. Embassy officers, and high-level government officials in Belize, according to a Jan. 18 press release from the law school.

The American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative retained Gurulè for the trip to study its prosecutorial system based on the ABA ROLI Prosecutorial Reform Index and its 28 standards of assessment. Belize has one of the highest murder rates in the world, right behind Colombia and South Africa.

Using the information he gathered in Belize, Gurulé will draft a report, paying particular attention to the Belize Constitution, laws, normative acts, and other sources of authority that currently serve the prosecutorial system of Belize.

He will return in July to present his analysis and suggestions for prosecutorial reform to government leaders.•

– IL Staff
 

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  1. The fee increase would be livable except for the 11% increase in spending at the Disciplinary Commission. The Commission should be focused on true public harm rather than going on witch hunts against lawyers who dare to criticize judges.

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  5. From the perspective of a practicing attorney, it sounds like this masters degree in law for non-attorneys will be useless to anyone who gets it. "However, Ted Waggoner, chair of the ISBA’s Legal Education Conclave, sees the potential for the degree program to actually help attorneys do their jobs better. He pointed to his practice at Peterson Waggoner & Perkins LLP in Rochester and how some clients ask their attorneys to do work, such as filling out insurance forms, that they could do themselves. Waggoner believes the individuals with the legal master’s degrees could do the routine, mundane business thus freeing the lawyers to do the substantive legal work." That is simply insulting to suggest that someone with a masters degree would work in a role that is subpar to even an administrative assistant. Even someone with just a certificate or associate's degree in paralegal studies would be overqualified to sit around helping clients fill out forms. Anyone who has a business background that they think would be enhanced by having a legal background will just go to law school, or get an MBA (which typically includes a business law class that gives a generic, broad overview of legal concepts). No business-savvy person would ever seriously consider this ridiculous master of law for non-lawyers degree. It reeks of desperation. The only people I see getting it are the ones who did not get into law school, who see the degree as something to add to their transcript in hopes of getting into a JD program down the road.

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