by Angela Morris (Texas Lawyer, January/February 2019 issue)
A new era is on the horizon for Texas law graduates taking the bar exam—but many current and prospective law students might not know anything about it.
The Texas Supreme Court has approved a recommendation to replace the Texas bar exam with the Uniform Bar Examination, effective in February 2021. It’s a big deal, because reciprocity will allow graduates to transfer UBE scores to 34 other states. Another perk is the fewer topics and essay questions than the existing Texas bar exam.
“Most law students are so focused on the normal day-to-day of law school that they don’t pay much attention to the bar exam. They just know the bar exam is hard and they’ll have to take it one day,” said Femi Aborisade, president of the student bar association at The University of Texas School of Law in Austin.
By Angela Morris (Texas Lawyer magazine, December 2018)
Texas law students yearning for rest and relaxation will get a chance later this month, but winter break isn’t just a time for leisure.
To make the most of the monthlong holiday, law students should fit in R&R, while also setting aside time to reflect on the pros and cons of the finished semester, set goals for the upcoming semester and jump-start job searches for summer jobs.
Texas Lawyer connected with a student bar president, a career services director and an academic success expert at three law schools spread across Texas to get their top tips about balancing the break. Here are their answers to our questions, edited for brevity and clarity.
For the vast majority of the Lone Star State’s baby lawyers, November is an important month to decide which path to take toward their future careers.
Although a minority of Texas law graduates have already accepted job offers from big law firms, there’s a different timeline for new lawyers looking to land jobs in small and midsize law firms, government agencies and the public-interest sector. Many legal employers wait until bar exam results come out in November to extend job offers to recent graduates. For current students who participated in on-campus interviews in October, many summer job offers will begin rolling in this month.
With a lot on the line, Texas Lawyer reached out to assistant deans of career services at three law schools spread across Texas to get their advice about how grads should tackle this important and stressful time, making the best decision about their future careers. Here are the top five tips for starting on the career path.
Read the rest of this story on Texas Lawyer.
Law students were on summer break when outrage erupted nationwide over the Trump administration’s practice of separating immigrant parents and children who crossed the country’s southern border.
But summer didn’t stop Texas immigration law professors from taking action, and in the coming school year, they’re planning opportunities for law students in their schools’ immigration clinics to help reunited families seek asylum or fight deportation.
Law professors all over Texas jumped into action at various levels to help immigrant families the government separated.
Houston law graduates Ieshia Champs and Shartory Brown have inspired many people with their stories surviving childhood homelessness and teenage pregnancy and then succeeding in law school while raising multiple kids.
Texas Lawyer spoke with Brown and emailed Champs for advice for other law students about juggling a strict schedule, coping with overwhelming demands, and tapping into their inner strength and resiliency. Here are their answers, edited for clarity and brevity.
Two Houston law graduates who defied tough odds to succeed in law school have inspired people across the country.
Other law students can learn about resilience and the power of priorities through the stories of May graduates Ieshia Champs of Texas Southern University Thurgood Marshall School of Law and Shartory Brown of South Texas College of Law Houston.
Both Brown and Champs were homeless at times during their childhoods and became teenage mothers. Tragedies and heartache could have derailed their lives—yet they persevered through college and law school, all while raising multiple children. The two women share so much in common that they became good friends while interning together at the Harris County Attorney’s Office in the spring of 2018.
In 1991 when Brad Toben became dean of Baylor University School of Law, the Lone Star State was headed by Texas Gov. Ann Richards, the U.S. president was George H.W. Bush and the Soviet Union dissolved, ending the Cold War.
Now on the job for more than 26 years, Toben is the second longest-serving law dean in the whole country, according to Rosenblatt’s Deans Database, a repository of information about law deans at Mississippi College School of Law in Jackson. Toben’s tenure is beat only by the first longest-serving dean, John O’Brien, the 30-year dean of New England Law Boston.
Toben has far outpaced the average of four years of service that most law deans put in and also beat all other Texas law deans by a long shot. In fact, the Texas dean who comes closest is South Texas College of Law Houston dean Donald Guter, who is the 21st longest-serving law dean with nine years of service and who plans to retire next year.