Friday, March 27, 2015

Dean's Certificates for Bar Exam

May 2015 Graduates: Under NIU Law’s standard procedures, a Dean's Certificate is prepared for all graduates by the Office of Budget & Records (Christina and Julie). After review, the certificate is then signed by Dean Rosato Perea and is sent directly to the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar (IBAB). For students applying to the Illinois bar, this process will be completed in June, after the law school has verified that graduates have fulfilled all requirements for graduation and do not have a hold on their university accounts. If you are applying to take the bar exam in a state other than Illinois and that state requires a form similar to the Illinois Dean's Certificate, then you will need to provide a copy of that form to the Office of Budget & Records in ample time so that it can be completed and sent in accordance with whatever deadlines are set by the state in question.

Student Bar Association Student Survey

Please complete the SBA Student Survey by Sunday, March 29, 2015 at 11:30 p.m. The survey link is: Once you complete the survey, print the confirmation page (or whatever the first page is at the end of the survey), write your name on it, and place it in Alyssa Freeman's mailbox for a free individual Barrister's ticket. Your opinions are very important to the SBA and the Administration.

Law Library News

  • Reminders This Month: The computer lab will be unavailable during the remainder of the Basic Legal Research classes this month. Please also remember not to leave personal containers of food or drink in the student lounge in the law library overnight. This will prevent unwanted smells, pests, and other harmful byproducts from permeating into the law library. We appreciate your periodic clean-up efforts for personal containers in the student lounge because the evening cleaning staff will not pick those personal items up or throw them away.
  • Law Library Spring News: We are excited to announce that the law library will be purchasing new carpet! The installation of the carpet will hopefully be finished by this July, and we will also be purchasing some new group study tables, chairs, and whiteboards for collaborative learning spaces in conjunction with this renovation process. We will begin the installation in the North Wing in late April, so please keep an eye out for signage regarding the renovation progress and designated quiet areas. During renovations, the quiet area will temporarily move to the South Wing of the law library while the North Wing is being renovated first. Just let us know if you have any questions about quiet zones for study, the renovation timeline, or any other issues during the renovation process. Please pardon our dust as the carpet installation begins next month! 

Upcoming Scholarship Deadlines

DRI Law Student Diversity Scholarship
Description: DRI announces its annual Law Student Diversity Scholarship program, open to rising (2015–16) second- and third-year African American, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, LGBT and Multi-Racial students. All rising second- and third-year female law students are also eligible, regardless of race or ethnicity. Any other rising second- and third-year law students who come from backgrounds that would add to the cause of diversity, regardless of race or gender, are eligible to apply.
Requirements: Application, Cover Letter, 3 letters of recommendation, Essay.
Award: $10,000
Deadline: March 30, 2015
More Information:

International Trademark Association Annual Meeting Scholarship Program
Description: Join the International Trademark Association for the 137th Annual Meeting in San Diego, California-the trademark industry’s premier event of the year. As a current INTA student member, you can attend the meeting for FREE if you are selected as an Annual Meeting scholarship recipient
Requirements: Application, Essay.
Award: Free registration to 137th annual meeting in San Diego- this includes ALL sessions, networking events and receptions, $500 stipend for travel expenses related to the meeting
Deadline: March 31, 2015
More Information: Come to the Admissions Office

Boone County Bar Association Scholarship
Description: The Boone County Bar Association awards scholarship(s) up to $1,000.00 each school year. The applicant must either be a current Boone County resident or a resident of Boone County at the time of his or her high school graduation.
Requirements: Application, One page Essay.
Award: $1,000
Deadline: March 31, 2015
More Information: Come to the Admissions Office

Illinois Government Bar Association Scholarship
Description: The Illinois Government Bar Association Scholarship is open to all students who are planning a career in Illinois Government at the local, state, or federal level. Applicants a job or internship in Illinois, paid or unpaid, in the public sector.
Requirements: Resume, names and addresses of the organizations to which you are applying for government employment, letters of recommendation.
Award: $1,000
Deadline: April 1, 2015
More Information:

George A. Strait Minority Scholarship
Description: The George A. Strait Minority Scholarship is awarded to college graduates with law library experience who are members of a minority group as defined by current U.S. government guidelines and are degree candidates in accredited library or law schools and who intend to have a career in law librarianship. Candidates may apply for more than one scholarship where appropriate.
Requirements: Application, Personal Statement, Transcripts, Two letters of recommendation, Financial Aid information.
Award: Varies
Deadline: April 1, 2015
More Information:

Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund
Description: The Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund aids people active in movements for social and economic justice. These need-based scholarships are awarded to students who are able to do academic work at the college or university level and who are active in the progressive movement.
Requirements: Application, Personal Statement, Transcripts, Three letters of recommendation, Resume, Financial Aid information.
Award: Varies but maximum grant is $10,000
Deadline: April 1, 2015
More Information:

Admiralty and Maritime Law Committee Annual Law Student Writing Competition
Description: The Admiralty and Maritime Law Committee of the American Bar Association Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section is holding its annual writing competition and invites law students to submit essays on recent developments in Admiralty and Maritime law.
Requirements: Essay must be no longer than 20 pages, double spaced, 12 point, Book Antiqua, have footnotes, and be in proper Bluebook formatting.
Award: $500, reimbursement for attending the TIPS Spring Meeting or the ABA Annual Meeting, and publication in a 2015 edition of the committee newsletter.
Deadline: April 3, 2015
More Information:

Beveridge & Diamond Constitutional Environmental Law Writing Competition
Description: ELI and NAELS invite law students to submit papers exploring current issues of constitutional environmental law. This annual writing competition is made possible through the generous support of Beveridge & Diamond, P.C., one of the premier environmental law firms in the nation.
Requirements: Application, Personal Statement, Transcripts, Three letters of recommendation, Resume, Financial Aid information.
Award: $2000 cash, an offer of publication in the Environmental Law Reporter, and a one-year individual membership to ELI.
Deadline: April 6, 2015
More Information:

Health Advocacy Clinic/PILS Guest Speaker

Come hear guidance from Ann Hilton Fisher, who served as the executive Director of the AIDS Legal Council of Chicago. She is a retired public interest attorney who spent over 40 years representing low-income clients who were elderly, disabled and living with HIV/AIDS. The presentation will take place from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. on Monday, March 30, in the Riley Courtroom, and lunch will be provided.

Criminal Cyber-Investigation Seminar

The Illinois Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is sponsoring a seminar entitled “Your Secrets Are My Business” on Monday, March 30 at 5:00 p.m. in Room 150. This dynamic PowerPoint presentation will demonstrate to the attendees how much information they leave on the internet creating a “Digital Footprint”. You will see actual case examples of information that has been acquired by this Cyber Investigator through using the internet and knowing how to ethically and legally obtain information. At the end of this presentation, the attendees will have a better understanding and knowledge about the value of the internet and will learn about some useful websites that comprise some of the secret techniques that professional investigators use. This seminar, which will be particularly useful if you are interested in criminal prosecution or criminal defense, is presented by Kevin W. McClain, Board Certified Criminal Defense Investigator and President of Kevin W. McClain Investigations, Ltd. Mr. McClain is an adjunct professor at Valparaiso Law School, is on the faculty at the Clarence Darrow Death Penalty College at DePaul University Law School, is a contract investigator for the Illinois Innocence Project and has worked with the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University.

Food will be provided. For further information, please contact Professor Paul Cain at

Criminal Law Movie Night

Join the Criminal Law Society on Wednesday, April 1, at 6:00 p.m. in the Riley Courtroom for pizza, beer and a screening of "Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills," a documentary by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky. This film is about the “West Memphis Three” in which teenagers were wrongfully (?) convicted of the Satanic-ritual rape, mutilation and murder of three eight-year-old boys.

Federalist Society Speaking Event on Net Neutrality

The Federalist Society is hosting speakers Professor Patrick Garry and Professor Heidi Kuehl on Wednesday, April 1, at noon in the Riley Courtroom to speak on "Net Neutrality" and its impact on individuals, society sectors, and businesses large and small. One of the covered aspects will be the impact that Net Neutrality may have on legal research. This event is timely as "Net Neutrality" has been trending online, but these words sound so boring that many of us never even found out what Net Neutrality is. Those who know something about it may have a partisan view that it is good or bad without knowing what it does in total. If you have questions about this event, please contact

SBA Elections

Candidate paragraphs for Executive Board positions (President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, and ABA Representative) are due Friday, April 3, by 5:00 p.m. If you are interested in running for a position, please e-mail your paragraph to Prospective candidates should refer to the Election Guidelines that were sent by the SBA Election Committee on March 25, 2015. These guidelines are also available on the NIU COL SBA Facebook page and on the SBA TWEN site.

Upcoming SBA Events

Please reserve space on your calendar for the following up-coming events:

  1. Pancake Breakfast: 1Ls, please join SBA and the Legal Writing Professors on Monday, April 6, 2015 from 8:00 to 10:00 a.m. in the Marshall Gallery for breakfast. The legal writing professors are excited to cook you breakfast in celebration of the completion of the Appellate Brief! 
  2. Barrister's Ball: Tickets are now available for the annual Barrister's Ball, which is set for Saturday, April 11, 2015, from 7:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. at the Kishwaukee Country Club. Pre-tickets are available for purchase for $30 (individuals) and $50 (couples) at the following link: Only individual tickets are available at the door and they are $40. Transportation will be provided to and from Swen Parson Hall and the Country Club starting at 6:45 p.m. Please visit the Facebook event page or ask any SBA member if you have any other questions. And don't forget, you can run the 5K earlier in the day and still have plenty of time to get ready for the Ball!
  3. End of the Year Class Party: The End of the Year Class Party is set for Monday, April 27, 2015, from 12:00 to 3:00 p.m. in the Marshall Gallery. Everyone — please join us for pizza, beverages, and announcements of the 3L Class Speaker and Class Agent and Professor of the Year. All 3Ls — your hat toss photo will be at 12:30 p.m.

Clinical Program Information Meeting

Thinking about taking a clinic this Summer or Fall?

The clinical faculty and students will be holding a clinic information meeting on Monday, April 6, 2015 at noon in Room 170. As part of the COL’s experiential learning program, we offer these clinical courses: the Civil Justice Clinic, the Criminal Justice Clinic, the Foreclosure Mediation Clinic, the Health Advocacy Clinic, and the Juvenile Justice Clinic. These clinics offer students the chance to work with actual clients in a variety of settings on litigation, transactional and alternative dispute resolution matters. This meeting will provide an overview of each clinic. Current and former clinical students will discuss their clinical experiences, and the faculty will explain the clinic application process for Summer and Fall. Lunch will be served.

Please do not hesitate to contact a member of the clinical faculty if you need any additional information about one of the clinics.

Anita Maddali, Assistant Professor of Law and Director of Clinics,
Paul Cain, Clinical Professor, Civil Justice Clinic and Juvenile Justice Clinic,
Wendy Vaughn, Clinical Associate Professor, Civil Justice Clinic,
Colleen Boraca, Clinical Assistant Professor, Health Advocacy Clinic,
Alan Boudreau, Visiting Clinical Assistant Professor, Foreclosure Mediation Clinic,

Law Review Symposium

Please join the NIU Law Review for its annual symposium on Friday, April 17, 2015 from 9:00 to 2:30 p.m. in Altgeld Hall. This year’s symposium, entitled Medical Marijuana Legalization, A Growing Trend: Social, Economic and Legal Implications, will have a total of 10 speakers that present on three panels and one featured speaker. The event is free to all students unless they also want to join for lunch and then the registration fee is only $15. For more information and to register, please visit the Symposium website:

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Research Assistant Needed for Professor Widman

Professor Widman is looking for a part-time research assistant for next year (2015-2016). Applicants should be willing to do some work over the summer (with hours during the academic semester accordingly reduced). This position is especially suited to students who have some experience and/or interest in administrative law, federal courts, and legislation. Preference will be given to students who have taken at least one of the above classes. I expect some of the work to require knowledge and experience with the Bluebook Citation form. Please submit a current resume (including your year, current GPA, and class rank, if known), a law school transcript (unofficial is fine), and a brief letter of interest to Professor Widman by noon on Thursday, April 9. Applications must be submitted in hard copy, not electronically, and may be left in the mailbox attached to my office door if necessary.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Family Law w/ Prof. Arriola canceled for 3/24/15

FAMILY LAW with Professor Arriola has been canceled for today (3/24/15).


Friday, March 20, 2015

1L Professionalism Program Continues This Week

Please plan to attend the following sessions in the 1L professionalism program, which are mandatory for all first-year students:
  • Wednesday, March 25, 2015: An Ethics Panel Discussion in the Riley Courtroom will be followed by a dinner in the Marshall Gallery.
  • Thursday, April 9, 2015: Professor Nancy Levit, one of the authors of “The Happy Lawyer: Making a Good Life in the Law”, will be speaking. Please note that this program is on a Thursday instead of a Wednesday in order to accommodate the speaker’s schedule. The program will be followed by a dinner. Location will be announced.
  • Wednesday, April 15, 2015: Cherilyn Murer (’78), President and CEO of Murer Consultants, Inc., will be speaking. Cherilyn, along with her husband, Michael Murer, generously fund the 1L professionalism program each year. This program will be held in Altgeld Hall and will be followed by a dinner. 
All sessions are scheduled from 4:00 to 5:15 p.m. with optional dining afterwards.

BLSA Diversity and Inclusion Panel, Part 2

On behalf of BLSA, we would like to thank all who attended our first diversity and inclusion panel. The panel was a great success, and we enjoyed hearing from our very own professors and students in regard to current diversity issues that face our field, as well as our law school community. The discussion was so riveting that BLSA is presenting a part 2! Please join us on Wednesday, March 25, at noon in Room 188 for lunch and a continued discussion. We hope to see all of you there!!

PILS Student Auction

The PILS student auction will be held on Wednesday and Thursday, March 25th and 26th in the Marshall Gallery. Come by and see what's on the block and bid big!

Careers in Appellate Law Panel

All students are invited to a panel discussing careers in appellate law on Thursday, March 26, at 4:30 p.m. in the Riley Courtroom. Speakers include private practitioners with an appellate practice; judicial law clerks; appellate court research attorneys; appellate prosecutors; and appellate defenders.

Riley Lecture

This year's Riley Lecture, "That Justice Shall Be Done — Constitutional Requirements, Ethical Rules, and the Professional Ideals of Federal Prosecution,” will be given by the Honorable Charles R. Wilson of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit (Tampa, Florida) on Friday, March 27, from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the Riley Courtroom. The lecture will be followed by a reception in the Marshall Gallery.

Public Interest Law Society Auction

The 20th Annual PILS Auction will be held this Friday, March 27, from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. in the Marshall Gallery. There will be food, drinks, excellent prizes, and as always, the opportunity to network. In addition to the Friday auction, the special Student Auction will be held in the Marshall Gallery on Wednesday, March 25, and Thursday, March 26. Don't miss out on the chance to win dinner with your favorite professor!

Attention students: PILS is still in need of volunteers to help with set-up as well as special projects during the Friday event. If you are interested, please let Abbey Buckels ( or Rikkilee Moser ( know ASAP. Remember: the more you help with PILS, the more likely you are to receive an Outreach Assistantship over the summer for your unpaid public interest internship.