Indiana law schools prepare for pomp and circumstance

Graduation season is beginning with law schools around Indiana hosting ceremonies the next two weekends in May.

Included in the 2016 celebrations will be the first class to graduate from Indiana Tech Law School in Fort Wayne. The class of 19 will receive degrees at the institute’s main graduation ceremony at 10:30 a.m. May 14 in the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. Afterward, the J.D. graduates will enjoy a reception in their honor at the law school.

Also graduating May 14 will be students from Notre Dame Law School and Valparaiso University Law School.

At Notre Dame, graduates will be honored during the Prize Day awards ceremony at 1 p.m.  May 13. The diploma and hooding ceremony will be at 12:30 p.m. May 14 at the Hesburgh Library Reflecting Pool. A total of 172 will receive their JDs and 27 will receive LLMs.

Per tradition, the recipient of the distinguished teaching award will be the commencement speaker. The Class of 2016 chose Amy Coney Barrett, who teaches classes on the federal courts, constitutional law and statutory interpretation. A graduate of Notre Dame Law School, Barrett clerked for Judge Laurence Silberman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and for the late Associate Justice Antonin Scalia of the U.S. Supreme Court. She also was an associate at Miller Cassidy Larroca & Lewin in Washington, D.C.

Commencement ceremonies for Valparaiso law graduates are scheduled for 10 a.m. (CST) at the University Chapel with 156 students to receive their degrees.

Illinois Supreme Court Justice Mary Jane Theis will be the speaker. A graduate of the University of San Francisco School of Law, Theis has spent her entire legal career in Illinois. She began as an assistant public defender in Cook County before being appointed as associate judge in the Circuit Court of Cook County. From there, she went on to serve at every level of the judiciary in the state of Illinois, including 17 years on the Appellate Court where she served as presiding judge.

Indiana University Maurer School of Law and Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law will hold their graduation ceremonies May 7.

IU McKinney’s commencement will begin at 6 p.m. in the Sagamore Ballroom of the Indiana Convention Center. Former Indiana Attorney General Pamela Carter will deliver the commencement address. A 1984 graduate of IU McKinney, Carter was the first African-American woman elected as a state attorney general in the nation and the first African-American to serve as Cummins’ chief legal officer and corporate secretary.    

IU McKinney Dean Andrew Klein and the alumni association will host a reception for the Class of 2016 from 6 to 9 p.m. May 6 at the Indianapolis Museum of Art.

IU Maurer will hold graduation at 3 p.m. in the IU Auditorium on the Bloomington campus. A total of 193 students will receive JD degrees  (which includes 12 joint degree students) and 63 will receive LLMs.

University of Washington School of Law Dean Kellye Testy will be commencement speaker. A 1991 graduate of IU Maurer, Testy clerked for the late Judge Jesse Eschbach of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and practiced privately at Kirkland & Ellis in Chicago and New York as well as the former Ice Miller Donadio & Ryan in Indianapolis.

Also, Class of 2016 members Jonathan Brown and Sora Erdem will make brief remarks during the commencement. Finally, graduate Jade La Croix will present the class’s gift to the law school which will be a pledge to the school’s capital campaign.

IU Maurer will host a graduate party for the Class of 2016 from 8 to 11 p.m. May 6 in the Jerome Hall Law Library.  


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