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Pace Law School Magazine

Feature Story

Mission: Possible

by Linda Myers

The task seems as daunting as a “Mission Impossible” movie (cue the tension-inducing percussion and brass, watch Tom Cruise hang from a helicopter by his fingernails).

Unfortunately in real life the message won’t self-destruct in five seconds. The drop in jobs for graduates, and accompanying plunge in enrollment are all too persistent for most law schools these days, even as the economy recovers. Indeed, Bloomberg News just proclaimed that “it is probably the worst time in decades to be a law school.”

But what may seem like a towering assignment is exactly the kind of challenge that excites and inspires David Yassky. "It's going to be a ball," he quipped when he took office last April as Pace Law School's 10th dean.  MORE >>



Faculty Spotlight

Immigration: A Conversation with Vanessa Merton

Long an advocate for immigration reform, both in and out of the classroom, Professor Vanessa Merton infuses her students with an appreciation for the historical context and economic implications of American immigration law, as she inspires a commitment to work towards assuring basic legal representation and development of a regulatory system that prioritizes equite and consistency, even in changing political times.

At Pace Law School, Professor Merton directs the Immigration Justice Clinic (IJC). Student attorneys, authorized to practice law under faculty supervision, handle the immigration law problems of indigent people in the lower Hudson Valley. The students represent clients before federal agencies, Immigration Courts, the Board of Immigration Appeals, the Second Circuit, and even the U.S. Supreme Court. The IJC’s overall job, Professor Merton likes to say, is law enforcement: making sure that the U.S. government obeys its own laws.

President Obama’s recent immigration policy announcements have created a tidal wave of discussion so we sat down with Professor Merton to gather her views.



Focus on: Pro Bono Scholars

Pace Law School joined a state-wide initiative that benefits our students and also benefits communities-- the Pro Bono Scholars Program. Initiated by Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman and announced in his 2014 State of the Judiciary address, the Pro Bono Scholars Program seeks to help fill what Judge Lippman calls the "justice gap," the lack of legal services available to low- and middle-income individuals. The program allows students to spend their final semester of law school performing pro bono legal services, assisting clients who are financially unable to pay for legal representation.

Seven third year law students make up the first class of Pace Law Pro Bono Scholars.  MORE >>

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