8.25.2014

Campus Accepts Ice Bucket Challenge

Facebook news feeds have been filled with videos of mostly individuals doing the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. But, at Regent University, doing things in community means a lot. That's why about 250 people came out Thursday, Aug. 21, for a "mass" ice bucket challenge.



"We believe in serving together and this is a prime example," said Dr. Paul Bonicelli, Regent's executive vice president. "We came together for a great purpose, to help raise awareness and support a cause that has affected people in the Regent community. So many of us know family and friends diagnosed with this devastating disease. Today, we helped change the world just a little through our effort and our donations."

Bonicelli announced that Regent was making a generous donation, along with the participants' donations, to the John Paul II Medical Research Institute.

"We chose the John Paul II Medical Research Institute for several reasons," Bonicelli said. "First, they have a pro-life approach to research, which is consistent with our values. Second, their research has application to a wide variety of illnesses, including ALS. And finally, they devote more than half of their budget to research, which is more than many similar foundations."

The challenge began at the university's weekly chapel service on Wednesday, Aug. 20, when Jeff Brauch, the dean of Regent's School of Law, announced via video that a Regent alumna had challenged him. He accepted and challenged the Law School faculty, students and staff, as well as the deans of Regent's other graduate schools, along with its College of Arts & Sciences, and Bonicelli.

Word spread quickly around campus, and the turnout exceeded expectations. Besides the ice bucket challenge participants, at least another 75 people came out to donate and watch the dousing on the University Library Plaza.

At Thursday's event, Brauch extended another challenge, to the College of William & Mary's Marshall-Wythe Law School Dean, Doug Davis. Bonicelli challenged Dr. David Buckingham, vice president of student affairs at Virginia Wesleyan College, and Regent alumnus Pat McCarty, head of Norfolk Christian School.

The Regent community embraced the challenge, and afterward, many people asked if the university would consider a similar charitable group event each year during the first week of classes.

Activity and comments on Regent's social media channels confirmed the community's enthusiasm. "Awesome" was a common word describing the event. Student Christina Teasdale summed it up in her Facebook comment when she learned Regent was participating in the Ice Bucket Challenge:

"My dad was diagnosed with ALS this year. I'm proud to be part of a university that would support this cause."

8.21.2014

6th Annual Community Service Day

 As the summer days begin to dwindle, many students focus on purchasing books, gearing up for their new class schedules and settle in for the fall semester. But on Friday, August 15, 150 Regent University School of Law students turned their focus toward the needs of the Hampton Roads community during the sixth-annual Community Service Day.

Students dispersed to various service locations in the area such as the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Habitat for Humanity, St. Mary's Home for Disabled Children, Union Mission, the Society of St. Andrew and the Bridge Christian Fellowship Swap & Shop. There, students volunteered for a variety of activities, including sorting food and clothing donations, facilities work, gleaning and oyster restoration.

Jeffrey Brauch, dean of the School of Law, explained that students' participation in these different community service projects is a simple reflection that Regent students' priorities are in the right place.

"They come to this school because they see law as a means to serve others and their communities," said Brauch. "It's immensely gratifying to see our entire student body display that heart to serve right at the beginning of a new year."

As a third-year law student, Erica Weston explained how easy it is to get caught up in focusing on studying, classes and her future career. Weston spent the day volunteering at the Bridge Christian Fellowship, where they were preparing for a clothing swap. Her favorite part of service was being able to visually see their work making a difference as large stacks of clothes that were donated for the swap were folded and organized.

"My focus should be on others, and the community service day is a great way to connect with the local community," said Weston.

Second-year law student Jessica Clark spent the morning aiding the Chesapeake Bay Foundation's Oyster Restoration team. Throughout the day she learned about collecting and cleaning oyster shells shipped from local restaurants in order to provide a home for newly spawned oysters to attach to in the ocean.

"I think it's important to serve others because of the example Christ set for us during His time on earth," said Clark. "It was so great to be able to participate in a short-term project with a cause that helps the community in the long term."

This willingness to serve is what Darius Davenport, director of Career and Alumni Services in the School of Law, believes molds legal scholars into legal practitioners. And though it is, perhaps, contrary to what many assume, the role of a lawyer is primarily to be a "servant."

"There's no better way for a law student to begin his or her law school experience than to be in service to their community," said Davenport. "Over the last six years I've witnessed how Community Service day has transformed and inspired many students to continue to serve in Hampton Roads."

Learn more about Regent University's School of Law.

Photos courtesy of Anca Potoan.

8.15.2014

Faculty Achievements: Week ending August 15, 2014

Professor Kenneth Ching's paper "What We Consent to When We Consent to Form Contracts" is currently the most downloaded recent contracts paper on SSRN.

Professor Scott Pryor's paper, "Municipal Bankruptcy: When Doing Less is Doing Best", was recently listed on SSRN's Top Ten download list for the topic of Political Institutions: Federalism & Sub-National Politics.


Professor Scott Pryor's paper, Who Bears the Cost? The Necessity of Taxpayer Participation in Chapter 9, was recently listed on SSRN's Top Ten download list for the topic of Bankruptcy/Debtor-Creditor.

8.07.2014

Faculty Achievements: Week ending August 8, 2014

Professor Eric DeGroff and alumnus Steven Fitschen ('99) received an offer from the Southern California Interdisciplinary Law Journal to publish their article entitled "Is It Time for the Court to Accept the O.F.F.E.R.? Applying Smith v. Organization of Foster Families for Equality and Reform to Promote Clarity, Consistency, and Federalism in the World of De Facto Parenthood." The article discusses parental rights and same-sex unions.

8.01.2014

Advanced Degree Program Steps into Court

Students in Regent University School of Law's two-year juris doctorate (J.D.) program may benefit in more ways than just receiving quality legal education in less time. The program also gets them into court sooner.

During their summer month of legal training, students in the Federal Laws of Evidence class witnessed the tools they've learned in the classroom unfold in the Federal Court in Norfolk, Va.

In July, Regent Law professor James Duane (pictured) was appointed by the court to represent a defendant in an alleged drug trafficking case. Since many aspects of the case directly related to what Duane has been teaching his students throughout the summer, he invited them to watch the arguments unfold outside of the context of books.

"The students benefited from the opportunity to see these classroom concepts being actually argued, considered and decided by the judge in real time," said Duane. "It gave them an available opportunity to see these issues fleshed out in a very special context."

The primary purpose of the field trip was to give the students a richer understanding of how the rules of evidence play out in a real case, an opportunity that their own professor never had in law school.

"Just by virtue of the fact that you're in the courtroom, you learn the subtle aspects of lawyering skills," said Duane.

Students witnessed how to address the judge and opposing counsel, how to speak and stand in a courtroom, and how to make a pers
uasive case. But for Amanda Gregory, a first year law student in the accelerated J.D. program, the greatest part of her experience was seeing her professor in action.

"I have so much more respect for him after seeing him in action as a defense attorney," said Gregory. "He really knows what he's talking about and he's applying it to the real world."

Apart from her family being in the Hampton Roads area, Gregory explained that the two-year program was "ideal" for her. She knows that when it is time for her to graduate, she will be one step ahead of her competition in the legal market.

"It's something different than what a lot of attorneys have seen before," she said. "It's a different perspective, and people find it very respectable that we finish this advanced program in two-thirds the time."

Learn more about the School of Law and the Advanced Juris Doctorate Program.

By Brett Wilson 

Alumni News Recap: July 2014

Andrew Esposito ('07) is now a research assistant at the University of Hong Kong.

Steven Fitschen ('99), president of the National Legal Foundation, was a guest blogger for Family Restoration. He writes about his participation in a marriage debate at the Virginia State Bar's annual meeting in June.

Terah Gaertner ('11) is now a public defender in Delaware County, Pa. In addition to her work with the criminal justice system, she was recently hired to co-teach a class at the University of Pennsylvania. The course is designed to help international students learn how to adjust to the American legal education system. Terah will teach skills such as briefing cases, outlining, and taking exams using IRAC. The course is very similar to Dean Gantt's Academic Success Program, which Terah took. Terah feels confident in her ability to transfer her knowledge to the incoming international students because of the education she received from Regent Law professors.

Regent University School of Law acknowledged the Honorable Teresa N. Hammons ('88) as the 2014 Judge of the Year at its 10th Annual Judicial Internship Banquet held in June. Read the full story.

Wade Hellman ('05) was called home by our Lord and Savior this week. Read his obituary here.

The latest article by Elizabeth Oklevitch ('14) and Professor Lynne Marie Kohm, “Federalism or Extreme Makeover of State Domestic Regulations Power? The Rules and Rhetoric of Windsor (and Perry),” is now available on SSRN.

Faculty Achievements: Week ending August 1, 2014

Dean Jeffrey Brauch's article, "Human Rights Protections in the Post-9/11 World," is now available to download on SSRN.

Professor James Davids, director of Regent Law's LLM and MA programs, is quoted in this piece about online education in the legal industry.

Professor Lynne Marie Kohm received an offer to publish her article, "A Brief Assessment of the 25-Year Effect of the Convention on the Rights of the Child" from the Editorial Board of the Cardozo Journal of International and Comparative Law.

Professor Scott Pryor's article, "Who Bears the Cost? The Necessity of Taxpayer Participation in Chapter 9," made the top Ten List in the following category: Bankruptcy/Debtor-Creditor.

7.25.2014

Faculty Achievements: Week ending July 25, 2014

During the quarterly faculty/staff meeting on Monday, July 21, the following law and law library employees received service awards:
  • Professor Tessa Dysart, Assistant Professor, 5 years
  • Professor Marie Hamm, Assistant Director for Collection Development, Law Library, 15 year

Professor James Duane's article "The Proper Pronunciation of Certiorari: The Supreme Court's Surprising Six-Way Split," which has received significant press, was recently listed in SSRN's Top 10 Download lists for the following topics:
  • Legal Education (Topic)
  • Law & Rhetoric eJournal
  • Law & Society: The Legal Profession eJournal
Professor Tessa Dysart's paper, "Child, Victim, or Prostitute? Justice Through Immunity for Prostituted Children," was recently listed on SSRN's Top 10 Download lists for the following topics:
  • Ethical Issues
  • Family & Children's Law eJournal
  • Women, Gender & the Law eJournal
Professor Scott Pryor's article "Who Bears the Cost? The Necessity of Taxpayer Participation in Chapter 9" was cited by Martha E.M. Kopacz, who is the expert appointed by the Bankruptcy Court overseeing the Chapter 9 bankruptcy of Detroit, in her 226-page report to the court on the feasibility of Detroit’s plan of adjustment. Feasibility is one of the requirements for confirmation of a city's plan, and U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes is the first to appoint an expert to help determine that Detroit's plan is achievable. Read more in Professor Pryor's blog post on the topic.

Professor Craig Stern's article "Does the Constitution Work?" was just published by the Akron Journal of Constitutional Law and Policy.