In this issue:
Commission/Law Foundation Committee Supports College’s Strategic Planning
As noted in last month’s “First Monday” e-newsletter, the College of Law recently received an annual visit from a visiting committee composed of the President and Commissioners of the Idaho State Bar, together with the President of the Idaho Law Foundation and members of the Bar/Foundation professional staff. This distinguished group held extensive meetings with the law faculty, staff, and students, as well as with President White and Provost Baker. In a letter dated December 18, 2007, signed by Idaho State Bar President Andrew Hawes, the visiting committee has reported on its visit. The report comments on the College and the strategic planning process. Here are a few excerpts:
The focus of most of the discussions this year was the future of the law school; specifically the decision to go forward and pursue the dual [Moscow and Boise] approach…. [W]e commend the leadership shown in this effort….
We sensed varying degrees of support from faculty and staff for the dual approach; however, most of the groups and individuals seem willing to move forward. President [Tim] White and the Provost [Doug Baker] were both candid and supportive of the efforts to date and of the decision….
Overall, we are impressed with the College of Law’s many contributions to the quality of the practice of law in Idaho.
We offer our praise for the many hours of time, and the resources that have been devoted to determining how best to advance legal education in Idaho. We applaud the fact that a decision has been made regarding the future of the law school [subject to State Board approval], and that the university is engaged and taking ownership of the decision.…
We agree that the status quo is not acceptable and that the phase[d] two location approach would greatly enhance the effectiveness of the delivery of public legal education in Idaho. However, we concur with the Law Advisory Council in their October 29, 2007, recommendation that the ability of the University of Idaho to deliver on this bold vision will largely depend upon securing the resources necessary to achieve high quality at both the Moscow and Boise locations….
As you need our assistance or expertise, certainly let us know.
The full text of the visiting committee’s letter will be posted to the College website, where the Law Advisory Council’s letter and other planning materials already appear.
College Adds Native American Law Expert to Faculty
The College is proud to announce that Angelique EagleWoman has accepted a full-time, tenure track faculty position, effective in the 2008-09 academic year. She will teach federal American Indian law, seminars on Native American natural resources and other issues relating to Indian tribes, as well as the College’s civil procedure course. She also will assist the College and the University with tribal law and leadership initiatives.
Professor EagleWoman is well known in national Native American law circles, professional and academic. She is currently a visiting faculty member at the University of Kansas School of Law and Program on Indigenous Nations Studies. She previously was a member of the Hamline University (Minnesota) School of Law faculty, and she represented many tribes during her earlier years in the practice of law. She holds a baccalaureate degree from Stanford University, a J.D. degree from the University of North Dakota (where she was associate editor of the law review), and an LL.M. (post-J.D.) degree with honors in American Indian and Indigenous Law from the University of Tulsa.
Further information about Professor EagleWoman and the law faculty can be obtained on the College’s website or from Professor Elizabeth Brandt, Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Renovation of Menard Building Moves Forward
The Menard Law Building, which already has received updates of its library, clinic, and law review space, is now getting courtroom and classroom upgrades that will transform them into state-of-the-art education and litigation venues. The courtroom, in particular, is receiving extensive remodeling.
“Around the state and the nation, there’s been a change in the way courts operate,” explains Professor John Hasko, Director of the University’s Law Library and member of the College of Law’s Technology and Facilities Committees. “Courts now conduct their business with more technology. There has been a mandate to update the federal courts, and there has been a parallel movement in the state court systems.” Courtrooms nationwide are employing monitors, presentation technology and software that enable attorneys to electronically display evidence to the judge and jury.
In 2004, the college hired a consulting firm located at the College of William and Mary, Marshall Wythe School of Law, in Virginia. The firm develops and tests courtroom equipment for use in state and federal courts, and law schools. The firm, known as the “Courtroom 21” consulting group, made recommendations on the technologies that would best support the academic and litigation functions required of the UI College of Law courtroom.
In addition to monitors for the judge and jury—and the electronics needed to feed them images and information—the College will incorporate technology allowing for the presentation of law classes, lectures, and courtroom proceedings to—and from—remote sites. Video recording equipment also will be available, allowing judges, lawyers, faculty, and students to review the arguments and presentations made in the courtroom.
The facility will enable law students to learn how to use and manage technology as part of their trial and appellate advocacy. “We have to familiarize students with this technology so that when they walk out of here, they can be effective practitioners in any courtroom of the state or around the country,” said Professor Hasko.
The human element has also been taken into account in the remodeling project. The courtroom will emerge with enhanced acoustics, improved lighting, a new podium, jury box and bench, new carpeting and comfortable seating for more than 200. The makeover of the 35-year-old facility also puts it in compliance with the current laws regarding disability access.
“It’s going to be aesthetically pleasing and functional at the same time,” said Professor Hasko. “I think the intention of the College of Law is to create a courtroom that is the showcase room for the Menard Law Building, and that’s what this is going to be.”
For more information on the new courtroom and other renovation projects, contact Professor Hasko at email@example.com.