A message from the Dean

COMMITTED TO EXCELLENCE
Leadership lies at the very core of our mission as a law school. There are so Rob Wilcoxmany tangible examples of how the University of South Carolina School of Law is leading the way in word and deed. In past issues, we have highlighted the remarkable leadership records of our alumni in national professional organizations. In this issue, we turn your attention especially to the leadership shown by our faculty, staff, and students. 

One of our most exciting new student experiences is the Konduros Leadership Initiative Program, detailed in our cover story. The program, which began last fall, focuses on helping our students jumpstart their paths to leadership positions. It is a unique offering designed especially for our students, and it will make a significant difference for those who participate. Soon we’ll have a network of Konduros Leadership alumni across the nation, poised and ready to do great things. 

Our faculty continue to build upon our law school’s reputation as a thought leader in matters of law and policy. You’ll read about Prof. Eboni Nelson, who has recently received a grant to study aspects of the law school admissions process that could potentially blaze a trail for more women and minorities to enter the legal profession. Then there is Prof. Marcia Yablon-Zug’s thought-provoking new book chronicling the history of mail-order brides and showing how the pioneering efforts of these women helped build America. 

Speaking of pioneering women, we sat down with our own Pamela Robinson, named South Carolina Lawyers Weekly’s “2016 Lawyer of the Year,” to learn the origins of the groundbreaking Pro Bono Program she helped create, how she keeps the program fresh after so many years, and why she came to law school on a dare. 

Just as Pam has led the Pro Bono Program to excellence for more than a quarter century, another of our alumni, Harry Davis, has guided the development of our Children’s Law Center into one of the state’s most important organizations serving the interests of children. In this issue we say goodbye to Harry, who retired in May after 12 years as director of the center, and we welcome Michelle Dhunjishah as his successor. Michelle has a proven track record of helping South Carolina’s children, and we know she will continue to build upon the work begun under Harry’s remarkable leadership. 

Finally, you’ll go behind the construction fence to see some recent photos that will help you visualize the progress and the impact of our new home. With less than a year until we move in, we couldn’t be more excited. Stay tuned for more updates in the months to come, as we roll out our schedule for a year of commemorative events around this new building and the 150th anniversary of our school. We hope you’ll join us in celebrating!

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Robert M. Wilcox
Dean

A message from the Dean

COMMITTED TO EXCELLENCE
While 2014 was filled with accomplishments, two major events took place that made it arguably one of the most exciting years in the history of our great school.

First, as you hopefully know, we broke ground on our new building in September 2014, and construction has since been Rob Wilcoxmoving swiftly. Every day, I watch our new home taking shape and changing both the future of our school and the landscape of our city. As the steel girders go up, I can’t help but be excited, not only for the future of our law school, but also for its past and present.

The new building represents a tremendous step forward in the investment the university is making in the School of Law. As evidenced by the distinguished group of alumni present at the groundbreaking, our school has long been a critical part of the state and nation. The university recognizes the importance it has played — and will continue to play — in the law profession in this state. I hope you’ll enjoy learning more about the unique features of our new home that will benefit South Carolina’s legal community, the university, and our students for years to come.

Second, we are tremendously proud of one of our own, William Hubbard, who is currently serving as president of the American Bar Association. He took time out of his very busy schedule to sit down with us and share the progress on the first half of his ABA presidency and offer a glimpse at what lies in store for the remainder of his term.

Of course we are proud of the many leaders the School of Law has produced, and in these pages you’ll learn about a number of your fellow graduates who, like Mr. Hubbard, have led national legal organizations.

And if you are a fan of the public radio podcast “Serial,” then chances are you’re also familiar with Professor Colin Miller’s EvidenceProf blog. His series of posts that provided a “legal companion” to the record-breaking podcast broke a few records of its own. With almost a million page views, it is the most read series on the Law Professors Blog Network. Colin shares why he started blogging about the show and offers advice to those interested in starting their own legal blogs. Of course, as our new associate dean for faculty development, you’ll also hear his plans for raising the profile of our professors on the national stage.

Speaking of professors, you’ll read about the latest work of Distinguished Professor Emeritus Jim Underwood, and we’ll introduce you to our six newest faculty members and their innovative scholarly work.

These are just a few of the highlights you’ll find in this issue. I hope you will agree with me that we have many good reasons to be proud of our law school, and our future has never been brighter.

RobSignature-1

Robert M. Wilcox
Dean

Summer 2014

In this issue

Committed to Excellence
A message from Dean Robert M. Wilcox.
 
Digital distinction
USC Law’s Coleman Karesh Law Library has been digitizing some of its 500,000 volumes since 2010, further cementing its role as the state’s premier law library.
 
Before the bench
Students in the law school’s new Middle School Mentoring Program recently had a taste of presenting arguments before a real judge.
 
Writing robustly
The new S.C. Legal Writing Academy gives lawyers an intensive course in communicating clearly.
 
Save the date
USC Law breaks ground on its new building this fall.
 
As the Pro Bono Program turns 25, we want to hear your pro bono stories.
 
2014 alumnus Jeff Gurney ponders the question of liability when driverless cars of the future wind up in accidents.
 
Read and repeat Want to brag? Here are a few things to talk up about your law school at that next cocktail party.