Bad News Barristers win kickball championship in neck-to-neck final game

By Chris Lawson, Editor-in-Chief

The Bad News Barristers were crowned champions of the Coed Recreational Kickball Fridays at PB Rec Presented by Miller! after winning the final game of the playoffs. The Barristers overcame great odds, being the lowest seeded team in the tournament. However, that did not stop the Barristers from defeating the #1-seeded team in the first round of the playoffs, In Your Mouth, who had defeated the Barristers during the regular season.

“What number seed you are makes no difference to this team. We are the best team to ever play the game, when we want to be, and tonight we were the best,” said Matt “Matty Ice” Baker, manager and team stylist of the Barristers. Continue reading “Bad News Barristers win kickball championship in neck-to-neck final game”

Former SBA president inspires bar passers at swearing-in reception

By Chris Lawson, Editor-in-Chief

On Dec. 5, hundreds gathered at the San Diego Convention Center to watch the California July 2017 bar exam swearing-in ceremony. Family and friends cheered as their loved ones took oaths to uphold the U.S. Constitution and the California Constitution. The ceremony buzzed with feelings of achievement and triumph, and rightfully so.

To celebrate the hard work and excitement of California Western’s bar passers, the school held a pre-reception at the convention center just before the large swearing-in ceremony.

As most of the legal profession is aware, the California bar exam is considered to be one of the toughest bar exams in the country. The July 2017 bar exam proved no different. This cycle, only 49.6%, less than half, of all applicants passed. From Cal Western, however, the pass rate was 65% of first-time test takers! Thus, there was much to celebrate amongst the large percentage of last year’s graduates who passed this notoriously difficult exam. Continue reading “Former SBA president inspires bar passers at swearing-in reception”

Academic Achievement: 7 Tips for Planning Forward after Grades Release

By Shane Dizon, Assistant Dean for Academic Achievementshane_dizon

If you’re reading this, you’re about to look up your grades or already have. If you’re in the former camp, take a deep breath. Remember, you’ve accomplished a lot thus far, and you’re still the same good human being before or after. If you’re in the latter camp . . . well, do exactly what I just said anyways.

It occurred to me that I could just write some improvisation on the good old “7 Stages of Grief” – shock, denial, bargaining, guilt, anger, depression, hope – but that’s probably not why you’re here. So I want to honor your experience and try to modify that message to law school. Continue reading “Academic Achievement: 7 Tips for Planning Forward after Grades Release”

SBA VP’s announcements

Valerie photo

By Valerie Gurrola, Student Bar Association Vice President


Between now and Jan. 30, email your nominations for Professor of the Year, Adjunct Professor of the Year, and Staff Member of the Year to Students are asked to submit one nomination per category. These awards are determined entirely by student votes, and the winners will be announced at Barrister’s Ball on Mar. 3, so be sure to make your vote count! Based on the nominations, SBA will release a final ballot with several candidates per category in early February.


If you want to attend Barrister’s Ball but were not able to get a ticket, please email as soon as possible to reserve your spot on the wait list. In your email, include the number of tickets you would like (up to 2) and any dietary restrictions. Based on the number of wait-listed students, SBA may be able to secure extra tickets from the venue. More information will come soon!

As always, please feel free to contact me with any questions regarding faculty/staff awards, Barrister’s Ball wait list, or other SBA-related matters. Have a great spring trimester!

Contact Valerie Gurrola at


Spotting the Issue: Confessions of a “Half-Blood” 1L

Tandis 3

By Tandis Taghavi

Chapter 1: Muggle Studies

Congratulations, you’ve been accepted into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry! Here you will learn the secrets of magic and the laws behind it. Your transformation from a muggle to a witch or wizard will be lengthy and stressful. Through these chapters, I hope to ease the process and explain some challenges you will face, like learning spells (also known as the rules of law).

Both in law school and in the world of Hogwarts, the common phrase “knowledge is power” has been known as an overarching theme. Hogwarts selects students carefully and rigorously for an exclusive education, although the acceptance letter arrives by an owl rather than through ordinary mail (after your first semester of Contracts you might see this again and think Mailbox/Dispatch Rule). The same is true of law school. You will face Professor Snape who smells the fear of 1L’s, abides by the Socratic method, and is terrifying. You may encounter Professor McGonagall who is firm but fair. You could even have a Moody Professor who has a “Mad-Eye” for the law.

There are a few things I wish I was told before I walked into my first week of law school. Continue reading “Spotting the Issue: Confessions of a “Half-Blood” 1L”

Upcoming CWSL and SDCBA events

By Kevin Serrano, Business Law Society Co-President & Rebecca Gold, SBA San Diego County Bar Association Representative

Business Law Conference (Jan. 25, 11 a.m.-5:30 p.m., FREE): The Business Law Society presents the 85th Anniversary Securities Act of 1933 Business Law Conference on Thursday, Jan. 25. This on-campus event, free for all CWSL students, will feature panels on “Capital Formation in a Shrinking Market” and “Securities Fraud and Enforcement.” Panelists include former Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) commissioner Troy A. Paredes and former SEC Chief Counsel Marty P. Dunn.

Date: 11 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Jan. 25. Location: California Western School of Law. Register online here. For more information, contact Marilyn Jordan at

CWSL students are also encouraged to attend three upcoming events advertised by the San Diego County Bar Association (SDCBA). All of these events and more are FREE for law student SDCBA members, and membership is free for CWSL students: join the SDCBA today here. Continue reading “Upcoming CWSL and SDCBA events”

Moot Court fall trimester round-up

By Chris Lawson and Sara Gold, Editors-in-Chief

Twenty-four California Western students represented the school this trimester at trial, appellate, and negotiation competitions throughout Southern California, aided by more than 10 Cal Western alumni as coaches.

Continue reading “Moot Court fall trimester round-up”