A newsletter for the students of the Columbus School of Law - June, 2018 Catholic University, Columbus School of Law website Catholic University, Columbus School of Law website

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A letter from Dean Daniel F. Attridge:

Dear CUA Law Students,

Our 2017-18 academic year has come to a successful conclusion.  Our students are now looking forward to summer jobs or internships, some well-earned vacation time, and in the case of our newest graduates, preparation for bar examinations.  Our faculty will refocus on their scholarship and other pursuits over the summer months.  In the meantime, we will all be getting ready for the upcoming fall semester beginning in mid-August with a new class of incoming day and evening students.  This is a brief report on what’s been happening and what’s coming up:

1.  Class of 2018 Commencement.  We had a beautiful day for our 129th annual Commencement exercises on May 25. In accordance with our traditions, we celebrated graduation at a magnificent venue — the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception — and afterwards with a reception on the Law School Lawn. It was a fantastic day for our graduates, our Law School, and our University. All of us shared with our graduates, along with their families and friends, the tremendous sense of pride arising from the accomplishment of an important life goal.

It was a great privilege for me to participate in the Commencement exercises for the class of 2018.  I urged our graduates to remember these words of encouragement from the book of Proverbs:  “Happy the one who finds wisdom, the one who gains understanding!”  By pursuing wisdom, our graduates will make a difference in the lives of others.  They will make the most of the training and opportunities they have been given.  They will be truly fulfilled and happy. Along the way, we hope to see and hear from our newest alumni frequently. 

Our Commencement speaker was Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.  Before his appointment to the Court, Judge Kavanaugh served in the White House under President George W. Bush as Associate Counsel, Senior Associate Counsel, Assistant to the President, and Staff Secretary to the President.  He also was a partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP, Associate Counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel, and an attorney in the Office of the Solicitor General.  He served as law clerk to Judge Walter Stapleton on the Third Circuit, Judge Alex Kozinski on the Ninth Circuit, and Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court.  He graduated from Yale Law School and Yale College.  Judge Kavanaugh spoke eloquently about the importance of our graduates’ achievements and their families’ support, the advantages and responsibilities of a Catholic education, and his admiration for his close friends who are CUA Law graduates.  The Judge shared three lessons that he has learned in life.  First, he urged our graduates to love their friends.  Second, he implored them to be optimistic:  to live life on the sunrise, not the sunset, side of the mountain.  Third, he enjoined them to stay humble.

Graduating student Kwambina “Beans” Coker spoke on behalf of the class of 2018. He asked his classmates to reflect on “WHY” they have embarked on their journey through law school and into practice.  He suggested that money should not be their only “WHY”; they should follow their passions; and they should leave the world a better place than what they came into.

University President John Garvey, himself a former law school dean, offered concluding remarks in which he advised our graduates to “be honest” and to “work hard.”  These are the attributes, he concluded, that make the difference between good and bad lawyers. 

2.  Fundraising during FY18.  Our fiscal year came to a close on April 30, and we are happy to report that we had another strong year. We received a total of $1,720,691 in cash, stock, and payments, a 23% increase over last year.  We also received an additional $666,574 in pledges and bequest intentions.  Thus, fundraising for the year totaled $2,387,265.  Contributing to this fundraising success as donors were 100% of the members of our Faculty and our Alumni Council.  Our special thanks go to Louise Lydon, our Executive Director of Development and Alumni Relations, and her predecessor, Corley Raileanu.

3. Faculty Departure.  Professor Suzette Malveaux, a longstanding member of our faculty, is leaving us at the end of this academic year.  We are very appreciative of the impact that she has had on so many of our students and wish her well in her new endeavor at the University of Colorado.

4.  Alumni Association.  All of our graduates are automatically members of our CUA Law Alumni Association. Under the leadership of the President of the Alumni Council, Stanley E. Woodward, Jr. ’08, the Alumni Association seeks to engage alumni, whether brand new, mid-career, or in their golden years, with each other, our students, and the rest of the Law School community. There are many ways to get involved, including, for example: (1) attending, planning, or hosting an event; (2) volunteering to mentor or advise a current student; (3) assisting our recruiting and admissions program; (4) helping our students secure internships or paid positions; (5) serving on your reunion class committee; or (6) making a donation to support our annual or other funds.  For more information, click here or contact our new Director of Alumni Relations, Kate Smith at smithcat@law.edu or 202-319-4697.

5. Faculty, Students, and Alumni in the News.  Please visit our website at www.law.edu and continue reading the other sections of this electronic newsletter for news stories about our faculty, students, and alumni. 

Thank you for your interest and support. I welcome your comments at attridge@law.edu.

Daniel F. Attridge
Dean and Knights of Columbus Professor of Law

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