Category: Campus News

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.

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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. 

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PILF auction raises $3K

Pro Bono and Public Service Week kicked off Tuesday, Jan. 29 with the annual PILF (Public Interest Law Foundation) Auction. Professors and staff auctioned off items and events. Items included law-themed artwork, a spa gift set, and $50 gift cards to Macy’s and Sephora’s. Professor-hosted activities included a group baking session with Prof. Catherine Hardee, surfing lessons with Prof. Tim Casey, and a BBQ with Profs. Lisa Black and Ken Klein.

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Gafford competition shows 1L talents

By Michelle Kellogg, Moot Court Honors Board President

Top finishers Varun Sabharwal, Alec Rogers, and Kelsey Hamlett.

Moot Court Honors Board (MCHB) is extremely proud to announce the Distinguished Advocate Award recipients from this year’s 1L Gafford Trial Skills Competition.

On February 2, 36 1L students competed in the Gafford competition. All competitors were asked to present an opening or closing argument for a fictional criminal trial. Thirteen students advanced to the final round, in which they presented their same opening or closing argument in front of a jury of their peers.

The top three competitors were Kelsey Hamlett (first place), Varun Sabharwal (second place), and Alec Rogers (third place).

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Pride Law commemorates Transgender Remembrance Day

By Mark Simpliciano

On November 19, CWSL Pride Law hosted a night to commemorate Transgender Remembrance Day (November 20) and Transgender Awareness Week (November 12-19). Transgender Awareness Week aims to raise the visibility of transgender people and address the issues trans people face.

Committed to helping make the California Western community more inclusive and tolerant, Pride Law hosted an evening event with informational boards and guest speakers who addressed the many issues transgender individuals face today and the need to respect one another. Continue reading “Pride Law commemorates Transgender Remembrance Day”

Moot Court teams conquer the competition

By Michelle Kellogg, Moot Court Honors Board President

California Western’s Moot Court Honors Board and the Competitive Advocacy Program sent nine competition teams to five competitions this trimester. Students proudly represented CWSL in trial, appellate, and alternative dispute resolution (ADR) competitions.

CWSL’s five trial teams collectively included 20 team members (five former competitors joined by fifteen enthusiastic rookies this season!). Four teams competed locally: two teams competed in the San Diego Defense Lawyers (SDDL) trial competition, and two teams competed in the Association of Business Trial Lawyers trial competition. Our fifth team had the privilege of representing CWSL at the Tournament of Champions trial competition, held in Philadelphia this year. The Tournament of Champions is invitation only, and CWSL’s team faced schools from around the country. Continue reading “Moot Court teams conquer the competition”

Student orgs recap: ILS, SIPLA, PILF & APALSA

International Law Society panel -- Stephanie Ramos, ILS President

Bettina Hausmann, third from left, spoke at ILS’s October meeting.

On Wednesday, Oct. 24, the International Law Society celebrated United Nations Day by hosting a speaker from San Diego’s United Nations Association (UNA) chapter. UNA San Diego’s executive director, Bettina Hausmann, spoke about the UNA’s 17 goals for sustainable development–specifically, climate action.

Hausmann also gave insight on what is referred to as the trial of the century, Juliana v. United States. In that case, 21 plaintiffs ages 11-22 are suing the federal government for violating the youngest generation’s constitutional rights by contributing to global warming. Continue reading “Student orgs recap: ILS, SIPLA, PILF & APALSA”

Current events recap: Kavanaugh panel & environmental rally

A Discussion of the Era of Kavanaugh -- Oday Yousif, ACS Vice President

More than 60 students attended a panel discussion Oct. 30 on the repercussions of Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s recent appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court. Hosted by the American Constitution Society and Women’s Law Caucus, the panel discussed how Kavanaugh’s confirmation will impact the Supreme Court and women’s rights. (For background on Kavanaugh, his views, and his confirmation, see our Kavanaugh coverage.) Additionally, the panel discussed the issues of sexual assault and sexual harassment.

“Kavanaugh’s lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court will have major implications for generations to come,” said Melissa Owens, president of the Women’s Law Caucus. “The discussion conducted through the partnership of ACS and WLC was truly invaluable for staff, students, and attorneys in the community.”


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Two sides of the same coin — CPDO civil and criminal law panels

Panelists at the Nov. 6 criminal law panel

By James A. Gilmore

The Career and Professional Development Office (CPDO) hosted a civil law panel Oct. 30 and a criminal law panel Nov. 6.

Civil law panel

The Business Law Society co-sponsored this panel, which featured several civil-law attorneys from a diverse array of practice areas. Continue reading “Two sides of the same coin — CPDO civil and criminal law panels”

A World where Dinosaurs and Santa Clause Exist but Type 1 Doesn’t

By Oliver Fredrickson / Tandis Taghavi, Editor-in-Chief 

The Starting Line

On Saturday, November 10, 2018, 4,000 strangers dusted off their running shoes, taped up their ankles, and lined up behind a red ribbon to fight for one cause.

But these people weren’t just strangers. They are community leaders. They are wives. They are husbands. They are brothers. They are sisters. They are aunts. They are uncles. They are co-workers. They are neighbors. They are friends. They are kids.

Some of them have direct experience with the nagging 20 finger pricks a day and emergency Skittles stash. Others now carry a tube of glucose gel in their back pocket after witnessing a friend’s blood sugar drop to 54 mg/dL.


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