Buy your tickets today for the 23rd annual UBSPI auction!

ubspi-invitationDon’t miss the 23rd annual UBSPI auction — have a blast while helping law students help others. Proceeds from the event support summer stipends for students working at public-interest organizations.

Friday, Feb. 24, 2017
5:30 p.m.
John and Frances Angelos Law Center
1401 N. Charles St., Baltimore 21201

Click here or on the image at right to buy a ticket and to check out the auction catalogue.

Impatient? No worries — the online auction is open now.

Tickets are $20 for students and $40 for general admission. Discounts are available for recent UB alumni and public-interest professionals. Email ubspi@ubalt.edu for more information.

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Murphy urges scrutiny of parole process for juvenile offenders

Laurence M. Katz Professor of Law Jane Murphy, director of the Juvenile Justice Project

Laurence M. Katz Professor of Law Jane Murphy, director of the law school’s Juvenile Justice Project.

In a Baltimore Sun op-ed, Laurence M. Katz Professor of Law Jane Murphy urges Maryland decision makers to take a close look at the state’s parole process as it applies to inmates serving life sentences for crimes committed when they were children.

Murphy, who directs UB’s Juvenile Justice Project, writes that most of the clinic’s clients had been in prison for more than two decades when the U.S. Supreme Court issued a series of decisions that acknowledged what, she said, “commonsense and neuroscience” make clear: Because adolescents’ brains are not fully developed, youngsters often do not appreciate risks or understand the consequences of their actions in the same way that adults do.

On the positive side, Murphy said, youngsters’ developing brains make them more likely than adults to mature and change – “to become, in penological terms, ‘rehabilitated.’”

Murphy continued: “In the most recent of these [Supreme Court] cases, Montgomery v. Louisiana, the Supreme Court held that clients like ours — serving life sentences for crimes committed when they were juveniles — are entitled to a ‘meaningful opportunity for release.’ That is, all but the rare ‘irreparably corrupt’ juvenile offender should be given a chance to be released.”

In Maryland, however, the promise of parole remains illusory, Murphy said, citing two primary reasons: The state does not mandate a right to counsel in parole hearings, and the governor must sign off on parole for anyone serving a life sentence – including those whose crimes were committed when they were children.

“Efforts to reform the parole process in Maryland are underway in both the court and the legislature,” Murphy said. “We urge decision makers to take a close look at this system and address the many barriers to sensible and just policy.”

Read “Reform Md. parole to offer a ‘meaningful opportunity for release’” (Feb. 19).

Learn more about Professor Murphy and the Juvenile Justice Project.

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No. 1: UB tops Md. to win regional BLSA mock trial contest

From left: UB BLSA team members Jordana Forbes, Emily Cruikshank, Aneesa Khan and Chanel White.

From left: UB BLSA team members Jordana Forbes, Emily Cruikshank, Aneesa Khan and Chanel White.

The University of Baltimore’s Black Law Students Association team took first place in the Thurgood Marshall mock trial competition at the Mid-Atlantic BLSA Regional Convention this weekend.

It was the first time UB BLSA won the top prize in the annual contest, held this year in Pittsburgh.

UB was pronounced the winner at a gala Saturday night.

“It was amazing,” said Jermaine Haughton, J.D. ’15, who coached the team with Professor Odeana Neal. “Everybody was just so excited.”

The UB team consisted of Emily Cruikshank, Jasmine England, Jordana Forbes, Aneesa Khan and Chanel White. England served as an alternate and was instrumental in preparing the team to win, Haughton said.

Besides Maryland, UB also defeated teams from George Washington University, the University of the District of Columbia, Penn State Dickinson, and Washington and Lee.

The final round, UB versus Maryland, was heard by a sitting judge; earlier rounds were heard by lawyers.

The UB team will head to Houston next month for the national BLSA competition, which takes place from March 8-11. The top three teams from each region participate in the nationals. In the Mid-Atlantic region, the winners, in order, were UB, Maryland and Drexel.

“We’re going to go into overdrive for the finals,” said Haughton, an associate in Miles & Stockbridge’s Product Liability and Mass Torts Practice Group.

Learn more about Haughton and Professor Neal.

Learn more about BLSA (and other student groups).

Learn about the National Black Law Students Association (NBLSA).

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Syrian human-rights activist Ziadeh to speak Monday morning

Dr. Radwan Ziadeh

Dr. Radwan Ziadeh

Monday, Feb. 20, 2017
10:30 to 11:45 a.m.
Room 402
John and Frances Angelos Law Center
1401 N. Charles St., Baltimore 21201

Prominent Syrian human-rights activist Dr. Radwan Ziadeh will discuss the humanitarian crisis in Syria and plans to rebuild a civil society there. In 2015, Ziadeh established the Syria Democracy Foundation to prepare for a democratic transition in Syria, and last year he participated in UN peace talks in Geneva.

Learn more about Dr. Ziadeh (from the website of the Syrian Center for Political & Strategic Studies).

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Don’t miss Aberdeen information session on Tuesday evening

aberdeen-e-flyer-2017

Attention law students! If you’d like to learn more about the summer study-abroad program in Aberdeen, Scotland, don’t miss this information session:

Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2017
5 p.m.
Room 102 (Angelos Law Center)

For more information, contact Catherine Moore, coordinator of international law programs, at cmoore@ubalt.edu or 410-837-6784, or visit law.ubalt.edu/aberdeen.

The Aberdeen study-abroad program, which will run from July 10-Aug. 4, 2017, provides students with insight into the laws of another country, a new perspective on the American legal system and an understanding of the challenges of representing clients in a global economy. Classes are taught at the University of Aberdeen by expert American and Scottish faculty.

The American Bar Association-approved program also includes guided field trips to Scottish courts, castles and country houses.

The program is open to law students who have completed their first-year courses and are in good academic standing. Financial aid is available.

Tuition and fees: $3,250 for six credits, field trips and admissions; $1,550 for self-catered housing, receptions and selected meals.

Learn more about the Aberdeen study-abroad program in international and comparative law.

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Student fellows to aid asylum-seekers in Athens, Greek islands

Catherine Moore, coordinator of international law programs

Catherine Moore, UB’s coordinator for international law programs

Catherine Moore, UB’s coordinator for international law programs, has been awarded a $10,000 grant from the University of Baltimore Foundation’s Fund for Excellence to cover travel costs for herself and seven student fellows from the Center for International and Comparative Law . The group will travel to Greece over spring break to work with asylum-seekers and migrants in Athens and in the Greek islands.

Since the fall semester, CICL fellows have been working with Advocates Abroad, a nonprofit based in Greece. (See earlier blog post.) The student fellows recently published two policy papers, one on detention practices in Europe and Greece and another on racial and religious discrimination during asylum proceedings.

The CICL fellows now are drafting papers on asylum-seekers’ right to legal aid and medical care in Greece. The matter is of increasing concern as lawyers and doctors have been prevented from entering refugee camps on the Greek islands of Lesvos and Chios.

The group will travel from March 16-27 to Athens, Lesvos and Chios and will work alongside staff from Advocates Abroad.

In April, the fellows will present their findings to the law school and university community to raise awareness about the problems faced by asylum-seekers and migrants in the ongoing refugee crisis in Europe.

Learn more about Catherine Moore.

Learn more about the Center for International and Comparative Law.

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Fannie Angelos Program wins ABA Diversity Leadership Award

The ABA’s Section of Litigation has awarded the University of Baltimore School of Law’s Fannie Angelos Program its 2017 Diversity Leadership Award.

A letter announcing the award stated: “The Section of Litigation created this award to honor those who have made outstanding commitments to promoting full and equal participation in the legal profession through the encouragement and inclusion of women, people of color, persons with disabilities, and/or persons of differing sexual orientations and gender identities.”

The Diversity Leadership Award will be presented to the Fannie Angelos Program on May 3 during the Section of Litigation’s 2017 annual conference in San Francisco.

Learn about the Fannie Angelos Program for Academic Excellence.

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