Lake at FIU's Modesto Maidique Campus

Society of American Law Teachers B.A. to J.D. Pipeline Project

Hosted by FIU College of Law Center for Professionalism and Ethics

Made possible through the generous funding of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity

Streaming live at: mms://

Friday, October 26, 2012

Pre-Law Advisors as Gatekeepers: Strategies for Diversifying the Legal Profession

8:45a.m.: Welcome
9:00 – 10:15a.m.: Educational Pipelines: Their Value and Their Future

A Dean’s perspective on educational pipelines. Focus on undergraduate offerings and courses that pre law advisors should be aware of using and explore additions to undergraduate and law schools that would assist in preparing and recruiting applicants from diverse backgrounds.

Sherman Davis, 3L, Florida International University College of Law

Alex Acosta, Dean, Florida International University College of Law
Lori L. Lorenzo, Esq., Deputy Director, Leadership Council on Diversity
Eugene K. Pettis, Esq., co-founder of Haliczer Pettis & Schwamm, President-elect, State Bar of Florida

10:30 – 11:45a.m.: Update on Fisher v. Texas: What This Might Mean to the Pipeline?

With the Supreme Court poised to hear arguments in Fisher v. Texas, this group of scholars will discuss what is at stake in the case and review some of the arguments made by the various interested parties.

Marc-Tizoc González, Assistant Professor of Law, St. Thomas University School of Law

John C. Brittain, Professor, David A. Clarke School of Law
Olympia Duhart, Professor, Nova Southeastern School of Law
Osamudia R. James, Associate Professor of Law, University of Miami School of Law

11:45a.m. – 12:30p.m.: Lunch
12:45 – 2:00p.m.: Beyond the LSAT

This panel will discuss the research demonstrating the limitations of the LSAT exam and introduce possible alternative assessments. Panelist will disclose the broad range of skills and qualities that are necessary to succeed in law school and the legal profession but are not reflected in the LSAT exam.

Daniel Cartwright, 2L, Florida International University College of Law

Marjorie Shultz, Professor of Law (Emerita), University of California, Berkeley School of Law
Rachel Godsil, Professor, Seton Hall University School of Law
Allison Seidner, Staffing Lead for Legal and Corporate Affairs, Microsoft Corporation

2:15 – 3:30p.m.: The Adverse Impact of the U.S. News & World Report Rankings on the Admissions Process

Too many applicants rely on the U.S. News rankings to decide where they want to attend law school. How do the rankings inhibit successful applications from diverse applicants? How do the rankings affect the law school admissions process itself?

Chanel Rowe, 2L, Florida International University College of Law

Alex Johnson, Professor, University of Virginia School of Law
Sarah Redfield, Professor, University of New Hampshire School of Law
Sonji Patrick, Education Director, LatinoJustice PRLDEF
Athornia Steele, Dean, Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad Law Center

Concurrent Sessions

3:45 – 5:00p.m.: How Minority Students Succeed: A Discussion of Effective Counseling Techniques (Pre Law Advisor Session)

Research has revealed how successful minority students prepared for law school, applied, graduated, and succeeded in passing the bar. What lessons can we learn from this research to make pre law counseling more effective?

Desmond Meade, 3L, Florida International University College of Law

The Honorable Carla Pratt, Penn State University School of Law, co-author of The End of the Pipeline: A Journey of Recognition for African Americans Entering the Legal Profession.
Alfonso Leon, 3L, CLEO Associate, Florida International University College of Law
Shayla N. Waldon, 3L, University of Miami School of Law

How Minority Students Succeed: A Student Perspective (Student Session)

This interactive session will provide current college students with an opportunity to share their perspectives on the conference theme of overcoming obstacles to law school. Specifically, students will be invited to discuss the issues of implicit bias and stereotype threat, particularly, their views of whether and how these phenomena affect them in educational settings or otherwise. We would also like to hear students talk about their biggest questions and concerns; what has been most helpful to them during their college careers thus far; and what information and advice would be most useful to them as they move forward. We hope this session will empower students to recognize and overcome (real or perceived) barriers to successfully obtaining a law degree.

Altanese Phenelus, 2L, Florida International University College of Law

Sonji Patrick, Director of Education, Latino Justice PRLDEF
Rachel Godsil, Professor, Seton Hall University School of Law
Gregory Pierre, 4L, Florida International University College of Law

5:15 – 7:30p.m.: Law School Fair

Opportunity for prelaw advisors and prospective law students to meet with various law school representatives.



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