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Miami Law News Headlines: March 2011

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2L Miami Law student Nykeah Cohen

Miami Law Student Wins Statewide Mock Madness Competition

2L Miami Law student Nykeah Cohen recently won the champion title of Best Closer at the Mock Madness 2011 Closing Argument Competition, hosted by the Nova Trial Association at the Shepard Broad Law Center at Nova Southeastern University in Davie, Florida. Cohen beat out students from various law schools throughout Florida.

Law Student Advocates Fight Foreclosure in Blighted Communities by Knocking on One Door at a Time

On any given Saturday in West Grove, Miami, you can find residents relaxing in their front yards, playing a game of dominoes under the shade of palm trees or taking leisurely walks around the neighborhood park. Nestled between Coconut Grove and Coral Gables, two of the most affluent areas in South Florida, this calm and quaint area is home to some of the most beautiful natural scenery in Miami.

Miami Law Alumnus Jaret Davis Wins Ruth Shack Community Leadership Award

Jaret Davis, J.D. '99, Administrative Shareholder at Greenberg Traurig and Secretary of the Law Alumni Association, will be honored with the Ruth Shack Community Leadership Award at the annual Leave A Legacy Donor Next Door Luncheon in May.

U.S. Coast Guard

Miami Law Students and Professors Interested in Maritime and Environmental Law Visit U.S. Coast Guard

Rising early on the Friday morning before spring break, a group of Miami law students and professors visited U.S. Coast Guard Sector Miami to learn about the Coast Guard's missions and operations. Organized by Miami Law student Lieutenant Spencer Roach, 2L, the trip was a great success.

Professor Edgardo Rotman

Faculty Lecture Series: Professor Edgardo Rotman

The Faculty Lecture Series continues on Wednesday, April 6 with Professor Edgardo Rotman. He will present "The Internationalization of Business-related Criminal Law" in the Law School's 4th floor faculty meeting room. The lecture begins at 12:35 p.m., following a lunch at noon in the same room. A question and answer session will follow after the lecture.

Miami Scholars

Miami Scholars Program Prepares Students to Enter Public Interest Sector

The search for an affordable legal education is a major barrier to many students interested in pursuing a public interest career. While there may be a high desire to serve the community, the average law student's debt is enough to turn many away from a promising future in public service, which does not offer as high a salary as other legal careers.

Miami Law Students Present Check to Honor Natasha Pettigrew at Barristers' Ball

Miami Law students presented the South Florida Bike Coalition with a $2,200 check in honor of Natasha Pettigrew – the law student who was struck and killed by a vehicle while riding her bike in the early morning hours last semester. Pettigrew had taken a leave of absence from law school to campaign for the U.S. Senate seat in Maryland as the Green Party Candidate.

HBO's 'The Wire'

Innovative Seminar Uses HBO's The Wire as a Lens to Explore the Intersection of Race and the Law

No stranger to moderating spirited debates on race, poverty, and other issues relating to inner city life, Professor D. Marvin Jones recently sought a new, more focused forum for the discussion. This semester, Professor Jones introduced a brand new seminar at Miami Law structured entirely around the hit HBO show The Wire.

Brazilian flag

Secretary of Security, Justice and Citizenship to Speak on the Brazilian Prison System

Brazil's new Secretary of Security, Justice and Citizenship of the State of Tocantins, Dr. João Costa, will speak at Miami Law on March 29 as part of the International Graduate Law Programs Lecture Series. The lunch event will take place in the Reading Room of the Law Library at 12:30 p.m.

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens Visits Miami Law

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens visited Miami Law recently to speak with students and faculty about his tenure as an Associate Justice. As students lined the hallway outside the room holding their ticket before the lecture, many wondered if the Justice would wear his signature bowtie. He did.

Patricia Redmond, JD '79

Society of Bar & Gavel Selects Bankruptcy Clinic Director Patricia Redmond for its Golden Apple Award

The Society of Bar & Gavel will present its annual Hausler Golden Apple Award to Patricia A. Redmond, J.D. '79, Director of Miami Law's Bankruptcy Assistance Clinic. She will accept the honor at the Barristers' Ball on Saturday, March 26.

Miami STREET Law's Camp Teaches Complexity of Law to Local High School Students

Students from local high schools spent most of their spring break last week taking part in Miami STREET LAW's Law Camp, an annual event in which Miami Law students teach teenagers the complexities of the law. The 17 high school students from Coral Gables Senior High School, Hialeah Senior High School and Miami Senior High School, litigated a real case in front of a judge in downtown Miami.

Four Miami Law Students Awarded Florida Bar Foundation Legal Aid Summer Fellowships

Four of the 21 students selected for this year's Florida Bar Foundation (FBF) Legal Aid Summer Fellowship Program are Miami Law students, more than from any other school in the state. Jennifer Jurney, Sarah Lamb-Bradfield, Liam McGivern, and Miraisy Rodriguez were selected out of 251 applicants.

Professor Osamudia James

Faculty Lecture Series: Professor Osamudia James

The Faculty Lecture Series continues on Wednesday, March 30 with Professor Osamudia James. She will present "Predatory Ed: Public Good, Private Wealth and the For-Profit Motive in Higher Education" in the Law School's 4th floor faculty meeting room. The lecture begins at 12:35 p.m., following a lunch at noon in the same room. A question and answer session will follow after the lecture.

Miami Law Students Win National Corporate Law Moot Court Competition

Miami Law continues its moot court successes with another victory at the Ruby R. Vale Interschool Corporate Moot Court Competition this past weekend at the Widener University School of Law in Delaware. The top team was comprised of second-year students Melissa Goldman, Alicia Kobasky, and Scott Perry. Goldman was named Best Oralist in the competition. The team was coached by private attorney David LaValle.

Miami Law Alumna Milande Louima Appointed Administrative Appeals Judge at the Social Security Administration

One full week into her new job as an Administrative Appeals Judge at the Social Security Administration, Milande Louima, JD '99, is swamped with cases. Since her appointment on February 27, 2011, she has been reviewing the appeals made by applicants who have been denied social security disability benefits by an administrative law judge.

Miami Law Students Win International Investment Arbitration Moot Court Championship

Miami Law students Tess deLiefde (2L), Andrew Riccio (3L) and Beshoy Rizk (3L) were named the winners of the Frankfurt Investment Arbitration Moot Court competition, which is the international student competition focusing on investment protection. The competition was hosted by Goethe-University Frankfurt in Germany. They were coached by Daniel Vielleville.

Federal taxes

Students Kick Off Spring Break by Volunteering Trilingual Tax Assistance in Spanish, Creole and English to Low-Income Area Residents

For most students, the month of March represents Spring Break in all its glory: Relaxing on sandy beaches, going to crowded parties, or binge eating in front of the television at home. The lure of fun-in-the-sun even prompts some students to check out of school early, leaving town as soon as the pre-Spring Break weekend hits.

Facebook icon

"Face-Off on Facebook" – Miami Law Students Teach Ethical Issues in an Electronic Age to Legal Aid Society

Miami Law's Professional Responsibility and Ethics Program (PREP) recently presented an ethics training at the Legal Aid Society of Dade County Bar Association. Under the supervision of Director Jan L. Jacobowitz, third-year law students Robert Zavistoski and Candice K. Stephenson, and second-year law student Charles Muniz, presented a training that addressed hotly debated ethical issues faced by lawyers in an electronic age.

U.S. News & World Report logo

U.S. News & World Report Ranks Miami Law's Graduate Program in Taxation No. 5

Miami Law's Graduate Program in Taxation was ranked No. 5 in the latest edition of U.S. News & World Report's Best Graduate Schools. Consistently ranked by U.S. News, the program offers a curriculum that allows lawyers to pursue a full range of tax specialties while also offering a solid foundation in the core subjects of taxation.

Miami Law Moot Court Team Wins Best Brief Award in the National Appellate Advocacy Competition

Last week, Miami Law sent two teams to the Regional competition of the ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition (NAAC) in Boston. One of the teams – which consisted of Kara Romagnino, Daniel Casamayor, and Jake Monk – won the Best Brief Award for the entire Regional Competition, in addition to amassing a 3-1 record in the oral presentations.

Clinic Victory Helps Family Avoid Eviction and Stay in their Home

As part of his involvement with the Tenants' Right Clinic, Miami Law student Ted Massey, 3L, won his first case last month and helped a family stay in their home. "It's a great, real-life experience," said Massey who successfully motioned to dismiss a wrongful conviction in front of a Miami-Dade judge. "I had to create a memo of law to turn into the judge, and submit it and prepare for trial. And I went against an actual attorney."

Sports and entertainment

Miami Law Hosts 14th Annual Entertainment & Sports Law Symposium

With the NFL negotiations concerning the collective bargaining agreement looming over the sports industry, sports and entertainment law professionals gathered at the University of Miami campus last Saturday for Miami Law's 14th Annual Entertainment & Sports Law Society Symposium. The day-long event brought law students and professionals together in a forum that discussed current legal issues in sports, entertainment, intellectual property, the arts, and the media.

Kathryn Walker

Joint Degree in Law and Public Health Enables Students to Tackle Pressing Issues in Health Law

As globalization increases and the world becomes more and more connected, the University of Miami School of Law continues to offer academic opportunities that place students off the beaten path of the traditional legal career. Under the UM School of Law and School of Medicine's JD/Masters of Public Health joint degree program, students use an interdisciplinary approach to tackle pressing domestic and international fields of health law, such as reproductive health, economic disparities in healthcare, children's health, and disability law.

Professor Mary Anne Franks

Faculty Lecture Series: Professor Mary Anne Franks

The Faculty Lecture Series continues on Wednesday, March 23 with Professor Mary Anne Franks. She will present "How to Feel Like a Woman, or, Why Punishment is a Drag" in the Law School's 4th floor faculty meeting room. The lecture begins at 12:35 p.m., following a lunch at noon in the same room. A question and answer session will follow after the lecture.

Masimba Mutamba, Drew Aiken, Omar John

Miami Law Student Masimba Mutamba Ranked Among the Top 5 Oralists at Super Regional Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition

Miami Law student Masimba Mutamba, 2L, achieved success as one of the Best Oralists at the Super Regional Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition at the University of Houston. The two-day competition was the largest regional competition to date for the Philip C. Jessup competition, which for the first time brought together teams from both the Southwest and Southeast regions, for a total of 21 schools and more than 80 oralists. Mutamba placed fourth.

Visiting Professor Jennifer Arlen Teaches Course on Corporate Criminal Enforcement at Miami Law

In the midst of teaching a short course for the second time at Miami Law, Visiting Professor Jennifer Arlen finds herself impressed with faculty and students. During the one-week spring course students studied the big picture of corporate criminal enforcement, focusing on areas of law that are common to any corporate crime. Independently, they were tasked with writing a 20 to 25 page paper that explores a more specific topic which they will submit towards the end of spring.

Miami Law students honored for outstanding service and dedication to the Academic Achievement Program.

Dean's Fellows Honored at 17th Annual Academic Achievement Recognition Luncheon

Miami Law's Academic Achievement Program celebrated the dedication and hard work of its Dean's Fellows on Tuesday. Dean's Fellows are upper-level students who hold weekly study groups for a specific class. The Fellows are individuals who excelled academically in that class and their job is to help facilitate the 1L's independent learning by focusing on learning strategies, organization skills, time management and exam preparation.

Ms. Ana Soto, the team's coach, Denise Reyes, Alexandria Gonzalez, Svetlanna Valdes, Janelle Torres, Jenny Molina, Daniel Reyes, Jessica Garcia, the Street Lawyers, Annery Pulgar Alfonso, Marisol Vilasuso, and Daniel Goggin, and the volunteer judges, Craig Leen, Assistant County Attorney and recently named to fill the City Attorney vacancy for the City of Coral Gables, Professor Paula Arias, Director of the International Moot Court Program, and two of her Moot Court Board members, Lisa Nagele, 2L, and Kevin Huber, 2L.

Miami STREET LAW Coaches High School Mock Trial Team to Success

Since early January, Miami STREET LAW Hoeveler Fellow Annery Pulgar Alfonso, 3L, and interns Marisol Vilasuso, 3L, and Daniel Goggin, 2L, went to Hialeah High School to help coach the school's Mock Trial Team for the Miami-Dade County High School Mock Trial Competition on February 24th and 25th.

Miami Law's Career Fair Helps Students Maximize Employment Opportunities

Miami Law's Career Development Office hosted its 13th annual Informational Career Fair on The Bricks. More than two dozen alumni and other legal professionals spoke with students about job opportunities, as well as ways to maximize their time in graduate school in order to maximize their options after graduation.

UNetwork Breakfast with Barristers

This spring, Miami Law students can take advantage of a new series of networking events brought together by the AskUs Fellows, a group of four recent graduates hired by Miami Law to act as liaisons between current students and the Dean of Students office and whose mission is to make current students' needs a top priority, and the CDO. The fellows and the Career Development Office are hosting the second round of UNetwork Breakfast with Barristers, where students can sit down with local attorneys over breakfast.

A pair of cyclists

Miami Law Rides On For Natasha Pettigrew

On Saturday February 26th, friends, students and faculty gathered to participate in Natasha's Memorial Ride. The 10-mile bike ride was organized to honor the life of Natasha Pettigrew – the former Maryland Senatorial candidate and Miami Law student who was struck and killed by a vehicle last year while she was riding her bike.

Denise Krepp

Alumna Denise Krepp, Chief Counsel of the Maritime Administration, Reflects on Her Successes and the State of Maritime

Shortly after graduating Miami Law in '98, Denise Krepp became a JAG officer for the Coast Guard. Over the next 10 years, Ms. Krepp ascended the ranks during one of the most pivotal times in the United States history for Maritime Law. In 2009, she became Chief Counsel of the Maritime Administration.

Gavel on keyboard

Miami Law Continues To Offer Innovative Programs With The Announcement Of New Joint Degree In Law And Communications

Miami Law has announced the launch of a new joint degree program in Law and Communications (J.D./M.A.) – the first interdisciplinary program at the University of Miami to allow students to earn a J.D. and an M.A. in communication in less than three and a half years.

Clinic students Natalie Garret, 2L, and Courtney Jordan, 3L, stand with Immigration Clinic supervising attorney Farrin Anello.

Clinic Students Visit South Florida Haitians Detained In Remote Louisiana Towns

Eight clinic students from Miami Law traveled to three detention centers in remote areas of Louisiana to meet with Haitian nationals facing imminent removal to Haiti. Many of the immigrants are longtime South Florida residents with family members who are United States citizens.