Balkinization  

Saturday, November 26, 2011

An Invitation to the Editorial Board of The New York Times

Jason Mazzone

I extend to the members of the editorial board of The New York Times an invitation: come to the law school where I teach and I'll show you around.

You will find, yes, doctrinal classes and some professors who use the Socratic method. You will also find transactional courses and drafting courses as well as teaching by problem solving and through team activities. I'll introduce you to some of the many students participating in one of our twenty clinics. You will learn how they work to obtain asylum for poor clients, free innocent prisoners, represent children in custody disputes, prepare protection orders in domestic violence cases, provide an array of services to internet start-ups, represent investors in actions against brokers, help people who have lost their jobs obtain unemployment benefits, give advice about bankruptcy proceedings--among many other activities.

Come meet also some of the hundreds of our students who spend a semester (or more) drafting judicial opinions as an intern for a judge, helping to prepare briefs at the office of the U.S. Attorney, working on copyright issues for a record label, or arguing cases before courts--among scores of other real-world placements.

I'll introduce you to my colleagues. Some of them are immersed in theory but many others are not. We have, among the members of our full-time faculty, former law firm partners, former prosecutors, human rights lawyers, the current President of the ACLU, and at least one software programmer. Our roster of adjunct professors covers virtually every field of practice.

You will see how our students are trained in the law and in applications of the law to real-world settings and how what they learn in the classroom is a foundation for what they do outside of it. Yes, our students read appellate decisions (and for good reason) but law school is so much more today than that.

Please, come see for yourselves.

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