Spring 2019, Issue #2 (3/14/19)

Q&A: Legal Writing Professor of the Year Roberta Thyfault
By Nick Ahadzadeh and Varun Sabharwal
SBA elections corner:
Vote 3/15/19!
By Nick Ahadzadeh
Caught between a rock and a Hot Pocket
'The Main Event' imparts practical wisdom on aspiring entertainment and sports lawyers
By Vincent Chiaverini
Supreme Court panel: Professors discuss citizenship-based discrimination and more
By Rabiya Tirmizi & Oday Yousif
Barrister's Ball sails smoothly
By Sahar Hassanzada
Around campus: Student org events
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In this new edition of The Commentary:

*SBA Elections*: Read the candidates’ statements before voting on 3/15/19!

Barrister’s Ball

Barrister’s Ball Sails Smoothly: SBA hosted one of the largest balls in the school’s history!

Q&A with Legal Writing Professor of the Year Roberta Thyfault

Campus News

AROUND CAMPUS: Read about the latest student org events!

Symposium: ‘The Main Event’ imparts practical wisdom on aspiring entertainment and sports lawyers

Supreme Court panel: Professors discuss citizenship-based discrimination and more

Entertainment

Food advice: Caught between a rock and a Hot Pocket

Student writers are what make The Commentary so great! We are always looking for students to submit articles on topics of their choice — including, but not limited to: campus news, legal news, sports, entertainment, etc. No long-term commitment is required, so feel free to submit a draft and share your academic/creative talents with the campus community, when you’re not out fighting crimes, going to class, or studying in the library! We also have meetings with free food 🙂

To learn how to contribute to The Commentary this trimester, contact us at commentary@law.cwsl.edu for submissions and questions/story ideas.

Around campus

Campus life was vibrant this past month, with numerous student org events by groups including the Asian Pacific American Law Student Association, South Asian Law Student Association, Women’s Law Caucus, Black Law Students Association, and Child Advocacy Law Society.

APALSA Judicial Roundtable — By Chae Kim

From left, Judges Truc Do, Selena Epley, Dana Sabraw, and Rohanee Zapanta

Students were able to meet and network with Asian-American judges at a judicial roundtable Feb. 15 hosted by the Asian Pacific American Law Student Association (APALSA). Judge Selena Epley, a San Diego Superior Court judge, led the panel with a light and fun tone as she questioned the other judges. First to be introduced was Judge Truc Do, the first Vietnamese judge appointed to the San Diego Superior Court bench. The second was Judge Rohanee Zapanta, the second-ever Filipino judge appointed to the San Diego Superior Court. And last but not least was Judge Dana Sabraw, a U.S. District Court judge who recently gained notoriety when he ruled to reunite separated migrant families along our southern border.

Continue reading “Around campus”

Supreme Court panel: Professors discuss citizenship-based discrimination and more

By Rabiya Tirmizi & Oday Yousif

California Western School of Law has a tradition of hosting a panel with the constitutional law professors, where they comment on current and upcoming cases that have made their way to the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS). On March 5, the American Constitution Society (ACS) and the Federalist Society continued this tradition by holding the “SCOTUS at Halftime: Review of the Current Court Session” panel event.

More than 60 students were in attendance as Professors William Aceves, Jessica Fink, and Glenn Smith all presented a case that has either been decided or is currently being reviewed by the Supreme Court. Each professor explained the significance that the case will have not only on society, but on constitutional law.

Continue reading “Supreme Court panel: Professors discuss citizenship-based discrimination and more”

‘The Main Event’ imparts practical wisdom on aspiring entertainment and sports lawyers

By Vincent Chiaverini

Ladies and gentlemen the moment you have all been waiting for, is finally here…introducing—drum roll—…the one and only…2019 Annual Entertainment and Sports Law Symposium at California Western School of Law! Hosted by your very own, Entertainment and Sports Law Society (ESLS).

What exactly is this symposium? Law students and other practicing lawyers attend the event to better understand what it takes to work in the sports and entertainment industry. ESLS assembled a diverse lineup, which included guest speakers who were sports agents, general counsel for baseball organizations, and even lawyers who work for Marvel Television.

Continue reading “‘The Main Event’ imparts practical wisdom on aspiring entertainment and sports lawyers”

Caught between a rock and a Hot Pocket

By Nick Ahadzadeh

As law students, most of us understand how difficult it can be to afford and make time for food – especially healthy food. Who wants to cook a well-balanced meal for 30-45 minutes when Costco sells Hot Pockets for bulk pricing? I wanted to write this article so that I could share my insight into the world of decent eating on a law student budget, and how to ensure that you actually make time to eat it.

NOTE: This is not exactly a “Healthy Eating” article, but is truly meant to provide some guidance for California Westerners to find affordable food near campus.

Continue reading “Caught between a rock and a Hot Pocket”

SBA elections corner — Vote 3/15/19!

UPDATE: The election winners were announced on Friday, March 15. Madeline Baker was elected SBA President; Nick Ahadzadeh as SBA Vice President; Elizabeth Dimaano and Tri Luu as 3L Reps; Harrison Bodourian, Dominic DeMarco, Valeria Loayza, and Stephanie Acheampong as 2L Reps; Dimple Chauhan as ABA Representative; and Tandis Taghavi and Parsa Nozzari as Commentary Editors-in-Chief. Students interested in filling a vacant position, such as SBA Treasurer, Administrator, or SDCBA or FBA Representative, can apply to be appointed to a position for 2019-2020. More details to come.

Vote for next year’s Student Bar Association (SBA) members on Friday, March 15 via an email sent out by SBA! Voting is open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Please note that The Commentary,  a program of SBA, does not endorse any particular candidates. All candidates were given an equal opportunity to submit materials to The Commentary.

Continue reading “SBA elections corner — Vote 3/15/19!”

Q&A: Legal Writing Professor of the Year Roberta Thyfault

By Nick Ahadzadeh and Varun Sabharwal

Roberta Thyfault, center, with colleagues William Aceves and Robert DeKoven

Professor Roberta Thyfault needs no introduction, but she’s a legendary appellate attorney and one of the best legal writing professors at California Western School of Law. She may seem reserved at first glance, but very quickly she smiles and puts you right at ease.

Professors like Thyfault may expect a lot from us as students, but we should be grateful for these types of academic challenges. With perseverance and determination, we can gain a lot from the experience and effectiveness that these professors exemplify on a regular basis. Coming from a student’s perspective, we’re sure that all of the students who had Professor Thyfault thought about this when making their decision to vote for her.

Professor Thyfault would like to thank all of the students, whether current or past, for the privilege of being able to teach them over the past two decades.

In an exclusive interview with The Commentary, Thyfault shared her thoughts about being named Legal Writing Professor of the Year at Barrister’s Ball on March 2. 

Continue reading “Q&A: Legal Writing Professor of the Year Roberta Thyfault”

Spring 2019, Issue #1 (2/8/19)

What was your worst grade in law school?
Professors:
.
Q&A: New Professor Pooja Dadhania
New to more than just law school
A 1L's tips for exploring San Diego
ELS beach clean-up
Discovering 'trash confetti'
Gafford competition shows 1L talents
PILF auction raises $3K
First Step Act signals progress in criminal justice reform
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COMMENTARY MEETING: Attend our next Commentary meeting on Thursday, February 14 at 12:45 to learn more about how you can contribute to The Commentary! Lunch provided. RSVP to commentary@law.cwsl.edu, and we will provide the room number. You can also check out our Facebook page, and be sure to like us! @TheCommentary-CWSL

In this new edition of The Commentary:

FEATURED

PROFESSORS ARE HUMAN TOO Professors share their stories about their worst grade or failure in law school

FIRST STEPS TOWARD PRISON REFORM — Politicians on both sides of the aisle are optimistic about the First Step Act, which is designed to reduce federal prison populations

CAMPUS NEWS

Meet Cal Western’s newest full-time professor — Pooja Dadhania has taught English in Japan

1Ls Enter the Courtroom— Thirteen students received DA awards in the Gafford trial competition

Public Interest Week — The PILF auction raised more than $3K for student grants

NEW Law Review/International Law Journal editions — The Fall 2018 editions feature articles by students Mimi Akel, Nisha Bhakta, Melia Thompson-Dudiak, Meagan Nettles, and Mark Simpliciano

SAN DIEGO

New to More Than Just Law School — Seattle transplant Chanse Pierson gives advice on how to get to know San Diego

‘Trash Confetti’ — Breanna Hayes shares how cleaning the beach shaped her view on environmental issues 

Student writers are what make The Commentary so great! We are always looking for students to submit articles on topics of their choice — including, but not limited to: campus news, legal news, sports, entertainment, etc. No long-term commitment is required, so feel free to submit a draft and share your academic/creative talents with the campus community, when you’re not out fighting crimes, going to class, or studying in the library! We also have meetings with free food 🙂

To learn how to contribute to The Commentary this trimester, contact us at commentary@law.cwsl.edu for submissions and questions/story ideas.

Sara Gold & Tandis Taghavi, Editors-in-Chief

Special thanks to our Webmaster, Parsa Nozzari

First Step Act signals progress in criminal justice reform

By Oliver Fredrickson

On December 21, 2018, after significant debate in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, President Trump signed the First Step Act into law. Despite falling short of what many criminal justice reformers were anticipating, commentators say that the First Step Act will deliver “the most significant changes to the criminal justice system for a generation.”

Background

Most of us know that the United States has, both per capita and in total numbers, the highest prison population in the world. To emphasise just how far the United States exceeds the rest of the world when it comes to incarceration, take note of the following statistics:

Continue reading “First Step Act signals progress in criminal justice reform”