"A school dedicated to greatness." This is how Regent University's Founder and Chancellor, Dr. M.G. "Pat" Robertson described the School of Law, which celebrated its 25th anniversary during the Sept. 23-25 weekend. Click here to view photos from the weekend celebration.
During a luncheon for alumni, students and faculty, former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft concurred.
"[My wife] and I have enjoyed every moment we have spent on this campus and with students around the world," he said. Paraphrasing earlier remarks from Regent Law Dean Jeffrey Brauch, Ashcroft reminded the group that their mission is not personal success: "One client at a time," he admonished.
"The laws don't define or provide a basis for greatness," he continued. "We have to aspire to do something more than just slide over the threshold."
Ashcroft is a distinguished professor in both Regent's School of Law and the Robertson School of Government.
Ashcroft's address was just one in a series of events that marked the school's anniversary. His remarks reinforced what Brauch has said all along about the role of Christianity in legal education. "Twenty-five years ago, no one was sure about the idea of a Christian law school," said Brauch. "Today it is clear that a truly Christian law school can produce national champion students and graduates who pass the bar at high rates and become outstanding community leaders. A law school can be both thoroughly Christian and thoroughly excellent."
This weekend's celebration offered alumni a chance to reconnect with the school and its faculty. In addition to offering a number of Continuing Legal Education (CLE) courses, alumni and their families attended a BBQ, followed by a Sonic Flood concert and movie.
The centerpiece of the weekend was the Saturday night banquet that featured a keynote address by U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Samuel Alito. Approximately 600 guests attended.
Alito's remarks centered on Regent Law's motto, "Law is more than a profession. It's a calling." He discussed the importance of choosing law not just for success or money, but as a public service. "What most law students need to learn is that doing this work well, in service to the community, is a worthy calling," he said. Commending Regent for its commitment to both excellence and ethics, Alito concluded his remarks with well wishes and congratulations on the law school's success.
Adding his congratulations to those of Alito, Regent president, Dr. Carlos Campo said that Brauch, his outstanding faculty and dedicated staff bring excellence, integrity and innovation to Regent Law every day. "They are called to their profession," President Campo noted. "And they deserve high praise for everything they do for the School of Law, all to the glory of God."
Regent's School of Law opened its doors in 1986. Now, 25 years later, the school has more than 2,700 alumni practicing law in 47 states and overseas, distinguishing themselves as judges and judicial clerks, partners and associates in law firms, mayors and legislators, and in positions with government agencies and public interest organizations.
Regent Law was the sixth school to be established at what was then known as CBN University. When the school began offering classes, it received a complete Law Library donated from the O. W. Coburn School of Law Library at Oral Roberts University (ORU). In addition to a new group of first-year law students, Regent also welcomed second- and third-year law students from ORU.
Three years later, in 1989, Regent Law celebrated the graduation of its charter class, the same year it was awarded provisional approval by the ABA. Regent Law was fully accredited in 1996.
Regent Law has a current enrollment of 436 students from across the United States and abroad, representing 49 states, several foreign countries and more than 500 undergraduate institutions. It has been recognized by The Princeton Review as a national top ten for "Best Quality of Life."
In October 2010, it was announced that first-time Virginia Bar exam takers from Regent Law achieved the highest Bar exam pass rate in the school's history. Regent's pass rate of 85.7 percent was above the state average and third among all Virginia law schools. Nationwide, Regent's pass rate for first-time Bar takers was 87.2 percent.
In 2006, Regent students were named the national champions at the ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition and received the Best Brief Award. Regent Law was also the national champion at the ABA Law Student Division Negotiations Competition in 2007.
"The first 25 years just laid the foundation," Chancellor Robertson observed. "We're going to the next 25 and it's going to be tremendous."
Learn more about Regent Law.
By Rachel Judy