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Circle of Law School Life: A Love Letter To Mentors

There is a small gem of a coffee shop tucked away on a side street in Center City named Elixr. I have been there twice: once in my first semester of law school, and once last week. Afterward, I posted this on Facebook: A friend commented that we could appropriately cue music from The Lion King. Though I graduated knowing how much I owe my Temple Law mentors for all their support and guidance, my Owl pride has amplified in the past few weeks as I started my job at the Defender Association. Many of our trainers were my former professors or internship supervisors, such as Temple Law Owl Marissa Boyers-Bluestine (TLAW ’95), who is the Executive Director of the PA Innocence Project, and Director of Advocacy/Famed Evidence Professor Jules Epstein. Part of my training even included a presentation from Kevin Harden (TLAW ‘10) about the importance of networking and mentorship. When I sat down to interview my first client, I realized my mentor Paul Messing (TLAW ’73) had represented him 15 years ago. I …

Temple Law ICC Moot Court Team Competed at The Hague

In May, Danielle DerOhannesian ’18, Hwui Lee ’18, and Alison Smeallie ’19 traveled to The Hague, Netherlands. Over a period of five days, they conducted oral arguments and presented briefs about human trafficking in the shrimp industry in the country of Northeros. The country, like the victims—and all allegations in the case—are fictional. The setting of the final round, however, was an actual courtroom of the International Criminal Court (ICC), and actual ICC judges adjudicated the fictional case. The Temple Law squad was one of two teams representing the U.S. in the international round of the International Criminal Court Moot Court Competition. The other U.S. team is fielded by Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. The teams won the honor of representing the U.S. in March, when students from 15 U.S., Canadian, and Guatemalan universities convened at the annual regional competition, held at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University in White Plains, NY. While Temple ICC Moot Court teams have advanced to the semi-final round three times in the past …

A Temple Law Family Tradition

Temple Law has a proud history of cultivating outstanding graduates. For the Bradley family however, cultivating outstanding graduates is a family tradition. In 2014, eldest sister Eleanor Bradley graduated from Temple Law. When her younger sisters starting thinking about applying to law school, “It was a no-brainer for me to encourage them to choose Temple,” she said. In 2015, Eileen, the youngest Bradley sister, applied and started her law school career, followed in 2016 by middle sister Marianne. All three sisters were present at Temple Law’s 2018 Commencement ceremony to celebrate Eileen’s graduation. As a returning alumna, El, along with Dean Mandel, was able to present the diploma to her sister, something Marianne can look forward to next year.  The sisters shared their thoughts on this unique family tradition: Eileen Bradley LAW ’18 My time at Temple Law has been invaluable. At Temple I have gained the practical skills I will need this upcoming fall as I begin my legal career, but I’ve also had the privilege of being part of the Temple Law community …

The Family Law Clinic: A Student Advocate’s Perspective

Working within the Temple University Legal Aid Office, Family Law Clinic has been, without a doubt, my most rewarding experience in law school. Temple’s Family Law Clinic gives law students the opportunity to work as a legal advocate for clients under the supervision of an attorney and law professor. This gives a student, who may have no prior legal work experience, an opportunity to work within a law office, as a certified legal intern. A certified legal intern works along side the supervising attorney interviewing and counseling clients, drafting and filing documents, negotiating with opposing parties or opposing counsel, and going to court and arguing on behalf of the client. Clinical work is supplemented with an academic course, in which students are taught substantive family law, complete case rounds, and discuss any issues or interests that may come up as a result of working within the clinic. What sets the Family Law Clinic apart from a typical law school course, an internship, or an externship, is the combination of academic study and practical application. For …

Walking While Black – A Reflection

Before the beginning of my last semester at Temple Law, I braved a very cold, windy, and snowy day to take part in the screening of the documentary “Walking While Black: L.O.V.E. is the Answer.” The film attempted to take a balanced approach in discussing the deep-rooted problems in America when it comes to the distrust that many Black Americans have with law enforcement, and the dysfunctional relationship between the two. The film attempts to humanize the Black victims of injustices propagated by law enforcement by focusing on some of the incidents that have gotten a lot attention, and many that have not. The film also attempts to humanize members of law enforcement by using primary sources to give the viewer insight into what it’s like to be a member of law enforcement in this current criminal justice reform environment. Ultimately, the film ends with a call to action, for victims of injustices, their families and communities, to engage in a reconciliatory approach with members of law enforcement for the purpose of creating a relationship …

Feminist Judgments & The Future of Reproductive Justice

One of the most memorable moments in a typical 1L student’s constitutional law class is the discussion around Roe v. Wade and the Supreme Court’s treatment of the often controversial rights surrounding reproductive health and wellbeing. On November 13th, the students at Temple Law had the opportunity to hear directly from Sarah Weddington (lead counsel on Roe v. Wade) and Kathryn Kolbert (lead counsel on Planned Parenthood v. Casey). The panel, which also featured Professors Kim Mutcherson, Elizabeth Kukura, and David Cohen, focused on the questions presented by moderator Professor Kathryn Stanchi’s book Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinoins of the United States Supreme Court. The book poses the question “what would United States Supreme Court opinions look like if key decisions on gender issues were written with a feminist perspective?” It seeks to answer this question through a series of rewritten Supreme Court opinions on issues of gender, penned by scholars and lawyers. The panel began with Professor Kim Mutcherson, professor at Rutgers School of Law in Camden and author of the book’s rewritten Roe. Professor …

Being a Prepared and Flexible Advocate

My law student partner and I recently represented a client at an arbitration hearing through the Sheller Center for Social Justice’s Advanced Social Justice Lawyering Clinic. Our client was a low-wage worker who had not been paid minimum wage and overtime by her former employer, for whom she worked for seven years. Her case had been ongoing for several years and she wanted a chance for her story to be heard — regardless of the hearing’s outcome. I was tasked with cross-examining the opposing party with an interpreter. To prepare for my cross-examination, I looked through depositions and documents, then crafted short and leading questions that I hoped would result in admissions that supported our case theory. The thing I did not anticipate was under what circumstances I would be conducting my cross-examination. Once it was time for my cross-examination, the arbitration had been in progress for approximately four hours and the panel was noticeably impatient. I wound up cutting a significant portion of my cross-examination on the spot because the witness was unable to read the documents that I’d …