Published December 29, 2022
The end of the year is upon us, which means a holiday break, some festive cheer and the chance to catch up on your favorite show. What better way to close out 2022 than by recapping the highlights of another successful year at UB Law. In this post we cover new events, old favorites and stalwart programs for students. Don’t forget to stick around until the end to read through our top ten blog posts of 2022. Let’s get started on the recap!
This webinar was spearheaded by UB School of Law; the Bar Association of Erie County; Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP; with significant involvement from UB Law student Shakierah Smith ’22 — who we profiled in a post about leaving a mark at UB Law. The event, held in honor of Black History Month, took place in February and saw UB Law virtually host John W. Marshall, the son of Justice Thurgood Marshall, touching on aspects of his own childhood as well as the history of his father standing up for justice.
The School of Law prides itself on the opportunities it provides students to engage in pro bono work and experiential programs for public-interest legal work. The seven students who concluded their law school careers as Pro Bono Scholars this year were bona fide exam all-stars, as all passed the bar exam after taking it in February, before graduating. They then worked 50+ hours of volunteer legal service in the spring, allowing them to qualify for bar admission
Inspired by the popular Red Table Talk series, the Office of Admissions launched the Blue Table Talk in April by holding candid conversations with current law students, faculty and staff in hopes to bring a new dynamic and support network to the law community.
The School of Law’s oldest clinic—formed in 1992, which assists individuals in crisis and works to prevent family violence—celebrated its 30th year this past April and marked the occasion with a special conference at Buffalo’s Saturn Club. We profiled the clinic in a special blog post that also features a Q&A with Professor and Clinic Director, Judith Olin.
The Office of Student Affairs launched a 12-week wellness program that culminated at the end of April, after providing students a myriad of skills, motivation and social support to help build healthy behaviors. Each week featured different activities or resources, including things like guided meditations, a book exchange and poetry event, expressions of gratitude and of course physical health tips.
Pandemic isolation began to waver and in-person activities resumed, allowing some of UB’s best-loved traditions to close out the academic year with some normality. OUTLaw’s Dinner allowed LGBTQ+ students and allies to get together at Shea’s Seneca in downtown Buffalo. The Buffalo Public Interest Law Program reopened the live auction floor at its annual fundraiser, filling the Fairdale Banquet Center in Amherst. Leaders of the Black Law Students Association, the Native American Students Association and the Latin American Law Students Association all joined together to host their 31st annual Students of Color Dinner at the Buffalo Niagara Marriott hotel. This event marked the first presentation of the new DEI Ally Award. The award was incepted as a way to recognize strong and committed allies who contribute towards DEI initiatives. Kevin Hartnett ’21 was the recipient of this year’s DEI Ally Award.
What’s better than Bar Prep and free breakfast? That was the happy result of UB School of Law’s summer initiative to give extended support to new graduates as they prepared for the NYS Bar Exam. Bar prep, like law school itself, can be an exhausting and mentally draining process, so the program aimed to keep spirits high and minds sharp throughout the study period.
Law school is a stressful three years, but there’s no question about the support you’ll receive as a student at UB! Led by Bernadette Gargano, vice dean for student affairs, the Office of Student Affairs expanded with two new assistant deans to provide an enhanced full spectrum of student support. Michael Hilburger ’11 and Jamila Lee ’15, both lawyers and UB Law grads, joined the office in the fall to increase outreach to student groups and bolster the office’s depth of experience.
B. Austin Waters is the champion of the Law Library as UB School of Law’s new student services librarian. She describes her role as half research and half outreach, both finding students and faculty the materials they need and working with groups to raise the library’s profile. Part of the way she does that is through personable, charming and often funny posts on the library’s social media channels. Find her posts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tik Tok.
For the first time in the school's 135-year history, the incoming class was celebrated with a 1L Section Reveal! Students were served light refreshments in the O'Brian Hall Lobby as they opened their envelope to discover their section for the 2022-2023 academic year.
There’s never a dull moment when welcoming the incoming class and this year was certainly no exception. In addition to some of the interesting and in-depth stats that made up of the incoming class—like a total 20 languages spoken amongst students—the class of 2025 also held the highest GPA of any incoming class in history with a median 3.61! Go team ’22!
With both wide and deep experience across multiple areas, the new members that joined UB Law this year really helped strengthen the expertise of the faculty. Seven new members were added to the team, providing expertise in areas like legal analysis, writing and research, torts and conflict, the Constitution, legal reasoning, contracts and sales, and more!
According to a recent article from U.S. News & World Reports, their 2023 rankings place UB Law at No. 62 in the nation for legal writing, making them within the top third of all U.S. Law Schools. Buffalo’s Legal Analysis, Writing and Research program (LAWR) helps provide students with the essentials of legal practice, like insightful analysis, persuasive writing and careful research skills. LAWR coordinator Stephen Paskey credits it in part to the smaller class sizes, allowing more in-depth commentary and aid for students’ writing.
What a year it was! If you’re part of the UB Law community, thanks for taking part in such a momentous year and for helping build a community that we all want to be a part of. As we close out the year on the UB Law Admissions blog, here are ten of our top posts from the past 12 months.
Learn more about the law school admissions process and School of Law community through an individual meeting with one of our staff members.