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Information for Current Students

Student Organizations

Student organizations are an integral part of the SUNY Buffalo Law School experience. Our diverse clubs, associations, societies, boards and activities provide students an opportunity to contribute time and talent in ways that are both personally and professionally gratifying.

Many students are involved in more than one organization, and even with a rigorous academic schedule, participation becomes a vital avenue of self-expression and socializing.

To participate in any of the organizations listed below, contact any of the individuals listed below or Lillie Wiley-Upshaw, vice dean for admissions and student life.

Planning an Event: The Law School's Special Events Office helps student organizations with event planning and provides you with a single point of contact when planning your event. The "Planning an Event" guide is designed to help you and your student organization. Please contact the director of special events with questions.

The "Event Date and Notification Form" must be submitted prior to any event planning. If you would like the Dean to attend your event, please submit a "Dean Calendar Request" form.

Alternative Dispute Resolution Association

Alternative dispute resolution is an increasingly popular form of case resolution in the legal community. The Alternative Dispute Resolution Association concentrates mainly on mediation and provides multiple opportunities for students to become involved with and learn about the mediation process. Each year the association hosts a a Representation in Mediation Competition and Mediation Training, which allows students to enhance their skills and provides them with an opportunity to participate in mediation.

President: Edward Sadowksi
Catherine McCulle
Treasurer: Erica Pandolfo
Jesse Hoelscher

Contact: Room 405, O'Brian Hall

American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS)

The American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS) promotes the vitality of the U.S. Constitution and the fundamental values it expresses: individual rights and liberties, genuine equality, access to justice, democracy, and the rule of law. ACS chapters offer platforms for debate and discussion about both enduring principles and the issues of the day, as well as provide opportunities for networking, mentoring and organizing around matters of both local and national significance. Every year ACS holds a national convention in DC and provides scholarshis to members of the student chapters. Past speakers including Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, former Senator Wendy Davis, and former Attorney General  Eric Holder.

President: Melanie Prasad
Vice President: Anita Delgosha
Treasurer: Christopher DeSanto
Secretary: Jayne O'Connor 

Advisor: Professor Martha McCluskey


Asian-Pacific American Law Students Association

The Asian-Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA) supports students of Asian descent, facilitates Asian law students’ interaction in the Law School community and provides a forum for discussions on legal issues concerning Asians. APALSA hosts regular academic and social events of Asian interest for its members. It is affiliated with the Asian American Bar Association of New York and the Minority Bar Association of Western New York.

President: Ashmita Roka
Vice President: Nara Tjitradjaja
Treasurer: Brittany Maxon
Secretary: Christine Sullivan


Black Law Students Association

The Black Law Students Association (BLSA) is a professional, nationally affiliated organization of black law students dedicated to improving opportunities and diversity in legal education.  At the SUNY Buffalo Law chapter of BLSA, our goal is to articulate and promote the educational, professional, political and social needs of our black law students while also giving back to our communities.

President: Philip Pierre
Vice-President: Larry Waters
Secretary: Sarah Draper
Treasurer: Khadijat Olagoke
Community Service Chair: Danielle Silas
NEBLSA Representative: Brittany Andrews

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Buffalo Environmental Law Society (BELS)

The Buffalo Environmental Law Society is the liaison between students and the environmental law program/concentration and its faculty and staff.  BELS is also responsible for Earth Week celebrations at SUNY Buffalo Law School. We've brought state senators and notable scholars to speak, screened environmentally focused films, organized hikes in nearby parks, and raffled solar chargers and other electronics to raise money for environmental organizations.

President:  Andrea Dinatale
Vice President: Bridget Steele
Robert Townsley
Secretary:  Anita Delgosha


Buffalo Public Interest Law Program

The Buffalo Public Interest Law Program raises money to support students who work in the public interest each summer during law school.  BPILP also hosts networking events for students to meet public-interest employers from neighboring communities. The organization is affiliated with Lawyers for Learning and participates in the Student Bar Association’s Volunteer Service Days.

President: Alex Verdi
Vice President
: Farina Mendelson
Co-Chairs of Fundraising:  
Christina Kennedy & George Brown
Outreach Coordinator: Christine McClellan
Programming Chair: Megan McGuiggan

Adviser: Lisa Patterson

Contact: Room 607, O'Brian Hall

Buffalo Sports and Entertainment Law Society (BSEL)

President / Director of Alumni Outreach: Nicholas D'Angelo
VP of Entertainment / Social Media Editor: George Brown Jr.
VP of Sports:
Daniel Muscarella
Treasurer / Secretary:
CJ Cook
Director of Communications: Ashley Pascuzzi

Faculty Adviser: Adjunct Prof. Nellie Drew


Domestic Violence Task Force

The Domestic Violence Task Force (DVTF) strives to raise awareness and educate students, Law School staff and community members about domestic violence through various activities such as panel nights and information dissemination at events. Our organization holds an annual "Dress for What's Next" spring event for survivors of domestic violence. It is a relaxing day for the women filled with shopping, makeup lessons, resume drafting and practice interviews. This empowering day encourage domestic violence survivors to remember their worth and improve their self-esteem.

President: Gina Gramaglia
Vice President: Christine McClellan
Vice President: Megan McGuiggan
Secretary: Caitlin McPhillips
Treasurer: Madison Ozzella
Community Outreach Coordinator: Kathy Oleszek

Contact: Room 604, O'Brian Hall

Family and Children's Law Society (FCLS)

The Family and Children's Law Society (FCLS) provides students with an opportunity to shadow experienced Family Law attorneys in Erie County Family Court proceedings, perform client intakes, and observe other relevant appointments. In addition, the FCLS will offer mentors, contacts and networking events for students interested in the fields of family law and education law.  For those interested students, the FCLS will afford summer employment and year-round volunteer opportunities in the family and education law fields, specifically through Volunteer Lawyers Project.

President(s): Nicole Kousmanidis & Erica Pandolfo
Vice President: Erica Gasiewicz
Secretary: Jenna Turco
Treasurer: Aimee Hopkins


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Federalist Society

The Federalist Society is founded on the principles that the state exists to preserve freedom, that the separation of governmental powers is central to our Constitution, and that it is emphatically the province and duty of the judiciary to say what the law is, not what it should be.  The Society seeks both to promote an awareness of these principles and to further their application through its activities.

President: John Burns
Vice President: Kelsey Hanson
Treasurer: Alex Fehrman 
Secretary: Jason Michael Gunning
Public Relations Officer: Christopher Przespo
Adviser: Professor Stuart Lazar



Finance and Law Society

The Finance and Law Society is a student organization that aims to help educate students on the convergence between the financial industry and the legal fields. Additionally, the group aims to connect students who are interested in working in the financial industry after graduation with professionals who work in the field. 

President: Johnathon Ling
Vice-President:  Mathew Paris
Treasurer: Erik Burrows
Secretary: Erin Rozewicz

Adviser: Prof. Lauren Breen

Frederick Douglass Moot Court Board

Administered by the National Black Law Students Association, the Frederick Douglass Moot Court Competition is the premier civil rights moot court competition in the nation. Each year, over 125 teams from schools from six regions compete at regional conventions for the chance to compete at the national level. SUNY Buffalo Law School has been a top contender and has won various awards such as Best Oral Advocate, Best Petitioner/Respondent Brief, and Second Runner-Up for the entire Northeast Region.

Chief Executive Justice: Anaiss Rijo
Managing Executive Justice: Meghan Hart
Executive Fiscal Justice: Sarah Draper
Executive Communications Justice: Michelle Santiago
Executive Public Relations Justice: De’Jon Hall

Faculty Adviser: Prof. Patrick Long

Contact: Room 405, O’Brian

Future Advocates In Training (FAIT)

Future Advocates in Training (FAIT) is a student-organized mentoring program between current/former law students and high school students. FAIT organizes law students to teach high school students how to excel in mock trial competitions. While some high schools have moot court classes or dedicated teachers, FAIT reaches out to lower-income schools that lack the resources to provide this extra help to their students. By volunteering their time, law students in FAIT have dramatically improved not only the mock trial skills of these high school students, but also their general academic success.

Executive Chair: Amanda Karpovich
Head Coach:
 Gina Gramaglia
Vice Advocacy Chairs: Olivia Paulo and Dan Palermo
Education Chair:
 Anaiss Rijo
Outreach Coordinator:
 Brittany Maxon
Financial Chair: Chris Colucci
Mentor Chair: Courtney Morphet

Attorney Advisers:
Michael Adler, Erie County ADA
Cathleen Roemer, Erie County ADA

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Holistic Law Group

The Holistic Law Group educates and promotes the practice of law as a healthy, healing profession that is both beneficial and therapeutic for the client and fulfilling and rewarding for the practicing lawyer. The practice of law as a healing profession is a collaborative law movement that invites future practitioners to break down the polarization of the practice of law as either a complete focus on the client or merely a business of benefitting oneself in a material way. Through the development of proper skills, such as attentiveness and awareness, future attorneys will optimize their client satisfaction and their own in all areas of law. This is an organization for anyone who endeavors to learn more about the legal profession as a humanistic modem that truly impacts clients and practitioners. Through events and speakers, the student body and faculty will learn more about this permeating aspect of the practice of law.

President: Ashley Ann Czechowski
Vice President:
Joseph Lavoie
Secretary: Leah Bernhardi
Treasurer: Stephen Joyce
Director of Community Relations:  Larry Waters & Christina Kennedy
Director of Faculty Relations:  Kerry Battenfeld
Director of Social Media:  Chelsea Neubecker

Advisor: Adjunct Prof. Lindy Korn


International Law Students Association

The International Law Students Association, a branch of the national organization, is dedicated to promoting international law by providing students with the opportunities to study, research and network in the international legal arena. Activities include academic conferences, publications and participation in the annual Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition.

President: Rebecca Alward
Vice President: Chris Kennedy
Secretary: Michelle Santiago
Treasurer: Kathryn Krause


Jessup International Moot Court Board

The Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition is the world's largest moot court competition, with participants from over 550 law schools in more than 80 countries. The Competition is a simulation of a fictional dispute between countries before the International Court of Justice, the judicial organ of the United Nations.

Executive Director: Steven Fisher
Team Members: Steven Fildes & Kerry Battenfeld
Financial Director: Emily Eckert
Administrative Director: Erin Decker

Faculty Adviser: Prof. Patrick Long

Contact: Room 405, O’Brian

Jewish Law Students Association

The Jewish Law Students Association provides events, programs and other activities of Jewish interest. Activities include catered Shabbat dinners, holiday-related events and celebrations, bar nights, ethnic Jewish food sales and guest speakers.

President:  Aaron Jacobson
Vice President:  
Aran O'Gara

Adviser: Ilene R. Fleischmann

Labor & Employment Relations Society

The Labor and Employment Relations Society (LERS) helps students expand their understanding of the labor and employment field by hosting speakers and networking with the legal community.  Students who are interested in labor, employment or corporate law are encouraged to join to take advantage of the invaluable experiences the society offers.

President: Ibrahim Tariq
Vice President: Michael Houck
Treasurer: Kenneth Lowe
Director of Internal Affairs: Kaileen Balzano

Latin American Law Students Association

The Latin American Law Students Association (LALSA) supports its wide variety of members and is committed to the advancement of minorities in the legal profession. LALSA welcomes students of all backgrounds and seeks to create a local network for students of color, Latino students in particular, as well as a partnership between the legal community and the Latin community. Above all, LALSA is dedicated to the academic success of its members.

President: Anaiss Rijo
Vice-President: Maria Apruzzese
Treasurer: Michelle Santiago
Secretary: Michael Marrero


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Native American Law Students Association (NALSA)

President: Kaileen Balzano

Faculty Advisor: Assoc. Prof. Jessica Owley

The Opinion

The Opinion is the independent student news publication affiliated with SUNY Buffalo Law School. The paper is committed to spurring further academic and personal growth among law students by disseminating information that can’t be found anywhere else. We pledge to be an intellectual, professional and hyper-local publication that evokes change by highlighting the law school, reporting on happenings on and around campus, & investigating social and administrative issues that impact student life.

Co-Editors: Sara-Jo Scime, Patrick O’Brien


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OUTLaw promotes a positive atmosphere at SUNY Buffalo Law School for LGBT students and their allies. Our primary objective is to educate our colleagues about the legal issues surrounding sexual orientation and gender identity. OUTLaw sponsors activities, panels, social events and service projects that build a network for members and supporters of the LGBT legal community.

President: Patrick O'Brien
Vice President: Alyssa Erazo
Secretary: Sara-Jo Scime
Treasurer: Melanie Prasad

Advisers: Prof. Michael Boucai and Lisa Patterson

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Phi Alpha Delta

Phi Alpha Delta (PAD), the largest professional coed law fraternity in the nation, is open to all students. PAD hosts academic, community service, professional and social events each semester, including its own national mock trial competition. Additional benefits include lifetime membership and a nationwide alumni networking system.

Justice:  Bryan Forbes
Vice-Justice: Nicole Kousmanidis
Clerk: Kelsey Hanson
Marshall: Frank Christiano
Treasurer: TBD

Advisor: Patrick Long

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Student Bar Association

The Student Bar Association is the elected body that represents student interests at SUNY Buffalo Law School. SBA provides information for current students, organizations, alumni and general audiences seeking a glimpse into life at the Law School.

President: Nick D’Angelo
Vice President:
Michelle Santiago
Treasurer: Leah Bernhardi
Parliamentarian: Sara Jo Scime

Contact: Room 207 O'Brian Hall



President: Marc Smith
Treasurer: Andrew Demasters

Trial Advocacy Group (TAG)

President: Taylor Golba

Veteran’s Law Student Association

The Veteran’s Law Student Association helps students expand their understanding of the emerging field of Veteran’s law and introduce's them to a network of attorneys in private and public practice, as well as U.S. Military J.A.G. programs, other National defense related fields. This is an organization for anyone who is interested in learning about what it takes to succeed in the complex area of veteran and military law through hands on techniques as well as meeting experts from all over the nation.

Founder/Co: Matthew Smith
Founder/Xo: Dennis Davis
Treasure/Tech Sergeant: TBD
Secretary/ Sergeant at Arms: TBD

Women of SUNY Buffalo Law School (WSBL)

WSBL was created for the educational and professional advancement of the women of SUNY Buffalo Law School, and it welcomes all students (male or female) to participate in achieving that goal. It was founded upon the fundamental belief that female law students are an invaluable part of the Buffalo law school community, and this organization intends to provide a supportive network of women to further its aims and objectives.

Co-Presidents: Jayne O'Connor  & Tori Karnisky
Co-Vice Presidents: Caitlin McPhillips & Jenna Turco
Treasurer: Larry Waters
Secretary: Anita Delgosha
Academic Outreach Chair: Kate Johnson
Community Outreach Chair: Taylor Schubauer

Advisors: Melinda Saran and Lisa Patterson