2013 Annual Report - Student Spotlight

The Student Spotlight section of Elon Law's 2013 annual report features articles and news briefs about student service, achievements and leadership. A print version of this article is also available.

Experience Through Service: Making a Difference at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Elon Law’s Center for Professional Development works with the United States Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA) to help students earn externships and internships in the Department’s Winston-Salem and Washington, D.C. offices. Read a more extensive news article on this subject.

Elon Law students volunteer at a Habitat for Humanity build

Pro Bono and Community Service at the Heart of the Student Experience

In the 2012–13 academic year, Elon Law students performed more than 15,000 hours of pro bono legal services. Students served through clinics in elder law, immigration law and wills drafting, as well as other service-oriented courses and student-led efforts including the Tax Assistance Program, Wills for Heroes and Innocence Project.

Photo information: Elon Law students Tyrone Davis II L’14, left, and Brian Park L’14, with alumna Melodie Menzer L’13, volunteered at a Habitat for Humanity build in Greensboro.

“Through pro bono work we have the opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge about our future roles as ‘lawyer-leaders,’ as well as to embrace our potential to serve as ‘community problem solvers’ long before we enter the profession.”

Sherea’ Burnett L’13

The student-led Pro Bono Board increased awareness among the student body about pro bono opportunities and helped to create additional service projects for students. In October, the board organized Pro Bono Week to demonstrate the impact of pro bono work. The event included Elon Law - Ask a Lawyer Day, in which students assisted volunteer attorneys with client counseling for Legal Aid of North Carolina. In addition to pro bono services, students contribute significantly to the local community through fundraisers, food and clothing drives and volunteer work, supporting local chapters of the American Red Cross, Alzheimer’s research foundations, domestic violence and homeless shelters, Habitat for Humanity, Urban Ministries and other organizations. In August 2012, the Class of 2015 volunteered with local organizations through the law school’s annual Elon Reaches Out community service day. Organizations served included the SPCA of the Triad, Greensboro Urban Ministries and the Interactive Resource Center for homeless services. The event promotes the value of community involvement and volunteerism by Elon Law’s future leaders. Learn more about Elon Law's pro bono work.

Elon Law Students Take Leadership Roles in the ABA Law Student Division

At the spring 2013 meeting of the ABA Fourth Circuit Law Student Division, hosted by Elon Law, David Lambert L’14 was elected governor of the circuit, representing 17 law schools in North and South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia. Ian Phillips L’15, the incoming vice president of the Student Bar Association, will serve as executive lieu- tenant governor of the Fourth Circuit division and Brian Park L’14, president of Elon’s tax law interest group, will serve as the lieutenant governor charged with assisting law schools within the Circuit in developing and maintaining Volunteer Income Tax Assistance programs. Read the full article.

Elon Law Students Teach at High Schools in Street Law Course

For the fifth consecutive year, Elon Law students taught high school students about law and human rights, encouraging teenagers to examine whether laws and legal systems should be changed to better reflect democratic values. Read the full article.

2012 Journal of Leadership and the Law Published

The second edition of the online Journal of Leadership and the Law was published on October 17, 2012. It includes interviews with accomplished lawyers about leadership in the judiciary and immigration law, as well as student insights about the 2012 Conference on Law and Leadership and the value of interdisciplinary work, multilingualism and “receptiveness” to effective leadership in the law. Conceived by Elon Law’s Leadership Fellows, the Journal of Leadership and the Law is law student produced. Read the full article.

Leadership Academy workshop at Elon Law

Leadership Fellow Join Forces to Address Global and Local Challenges

Elon Law’s Leadership Fellows hosted a second annual Leadership Academy in 2013, welcoming Elon University’s undergraduate Isabella Cannon Leadership Fellows to collaborate in the examination of global problems and local solutions. Emily Seawell L’15 (pictured at left standing) led a discussion on sweatshops and outsourcing in foreign countries. Read the full article.

Moot Court Teams Excel in National Competitions

2012 intramural moot court champions at Elon LawSince first entering interscholastic competitions in 2008, Elon’s Moot Court program has earned national recognition for oral advocacy and a number of best brief awards. See all Moot Court team results.

Photo information:  Kaalil Muhammad L’14, left, was named Best Oralist from the Preliminary Rounds at Elon Law’s 2012 intramural moot court competition. Jennifer Bobowski L’14, center, and Patrick Ward L’14, second from left, were the first-runner up team and won the competition’s Best Team Brief award. David Lambert L’14 and Christian Robin L’14, right and second from right, respectively, won the final round of the competition. Robin was named Best Oralist from the Final Round. The final round was judged by the Hon. Robert H. Edmunds Jr., associate justice of the N.C. Supreme Court; the Hon. Ralph A. Walker, retired associate judge of the N.C. Court of Appeals; and the Hon. James L. Gale, special superior court judge for complex business cases, N.C. Business Court.

Women's Law Association Recognizes Judge Terese Vincents and Tiffany Atkins L'11

Women's Law Association group photoThe Women’s Law Association at Elon Law celebrated students, faculty and legal professionals at the fifth annual Women in the Profession Dinner in April 2013. This year’s Outstanding Woman in the Profession honoree was Judge Teresa H. Vincent, district court judge for the 18th district of North Carolina (pictured fifth from right). Elected to the bench in 2000, Vincent served as an assistant district attorney for seven years prior to joining the bench.

“We selected Judge Vincent for her tireless efforts to help put an end to domestic violence,” said Mallory Horne L’14, WLA professionalism chair. “She exemplifies what we can all strive to become — community oriented, successful and caring.”

Tiffany Atkins L’11 received the Outstanding Alumna in the Profession award. Atkins is a staff attorney with Legal Aid of North Carolina, where she works primarily with domestic violence clients and on family law matters. Read the full article.

David Gergen, Jim Hunt, and Advisory Board Engage Law Students at Special Forum

Jim Hunt and David Gergen speak with students at Elon Law 2012A September luncheon at Elon Law provided students the opportunity to meet and interact with members of Elon’s Law School Advisory Board. Students heard from Board of Advisors Chairman David Gergen and former N.C. Governor James “Jim” Hunt.

“I hope that, in addition to being good lawyers, you will also be good leaders in our democracy,” Hunt said. “There is a great history in this country of lawyers providing some of the best leadership in America. We need more of that.” Read more about the Jim Hunt and David Gergen luncheon.

Kaitlin Shimansky Receives Women of Justice Award

Law alumna Kaitlin Shimansky

North Carolina Lawyers Weekly named Kaitlin Shimansky L’13 an inaugural Women of Justice Award honoree in 2012. The awards recognize women in North Carolina who demonstrate leadership, integrity, service, sacrifice and accomplishment in improving the quality of justice and exemplifying the highest ideals of the legal profession. Shimansky received the Leader of Tomorrow Award at the 2012 Women of Justice Awards reception in Raleigh. Shimansky’s work as president of the Elon Law chapter of the Innocence Project and student in the Humanitarian Immigration Law Clinic, as well as her interest in serving as a public defender, were featured in a special section of the publication.Read the full article.

New Student Bar Association Leadership

Elon Law Student Bar Association leadership 2013-2014

Elon Law students elected to SBA leadership positions, from left, Lauren Kemp, Channing Franklin, Ernest Lewis, Stacy Kroustalis, Nicholas Livengood, Emily Pfeiffer, Ian Phillips, Amber Donta, Caitlin Cutchin and Katie Koone, incoming SBA president.