Friday, April 18, 2014

COURSE REGISTRATION: Summer Schedule Announced

The schedule for the NIU College of Law Summer Session 2014 is now up and visible on MyNiu. Registration will open in MyNiu at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, April 21, 2014 for all students who will have 25 or more hours by the end of this spring semester. Current first-year students who wish to register for summer school will need to familiarize themselves with the registration process in MyNiu. Instructions are available at

Part-time, first-year students who will have less than 25 hours at the end of this semester will need to see Dean Coles to register for summer classes. Please remember that no students can register themselves for clinics or externships — you need to contact the supervising faculty member.

If you have any questions, please contact Dean Gaebler in person or at

Sunday, April 13, 2014

SBA End of Year Voting and Party Information

SBA VOTING CONTINUES ! We are in the midst of election season at NIU COL! Please make your voice heard and share this information with your classmates so they may be informed on how to vote. Voting is on TWEN!

  • SBA Representative Elections: Application paragraphs are due Monday, April 14, by 3:00 p.m.; voting is on Thursday, April 17 through Friday April 18 at 3:00 p.m
  • Class Agent and Class Speaker: Nominations end Wednesday, April 16, at 3:00 p.m. Please e-mail all nominations to Barb Manning at Voting is on Thursday April 17 through Friday April 18 at 3: 00 p.m. To vote for Class Agent and Class Speaker, please check your NIU e-mail for a Survey Monkey link. 
  • Professor of the Year Elections: Voting is on Thursday, April 17, and Friday, April 18, by 3:00 p.m. All professors are listed on the ballot. 
Last Day of Class Party! Join the 3Ls as they celebrate their very last day of law school classes! The party will be in the Marshall Gallery from 12:00 to 3:00 p.m. on Monday, April 28, 2014. There will be free lunch, soda, water, beer and wine. 

The schedule is as follows:

12:20 p.m. -- Announcements (Professor of the Year, Class Speaker, Class Agent and presentation of the 2014 Class Gift)
12:45 p.m. -- Class of 2014 Hat Toss Photo
1:00 p.m. -- Class Composite unveiling

This is also the time to pick up your graduation gowns. Please note that all NIU Law students are welcome!

Scholarship Deadlines Coming Up This Week

National Law Review Student Writing Contest : Supreme Court Decisions
The National Law Review is hosting its monthly Law Student Writing Contest, with the winning article to be published on the National Law Review’s website, the National Law Forum blog and in the publication’s newsletter.  This month's suggested topic is Supreme Court Case Decisions from 2012 to Present, although entries covering other current issues will also be considered. Articles should be submitted by no later than April 14, 2014 to For complete contest guidelines, see

Women’s Bar Association of Illinois Scholarship 
The WBAI will award two scholarships to second-year female law students at this year’s Annual Black Tie Dinner Event on Friday, June 6, 2014 at Navy Pier. Two $1000 scholarships will be issued in honor of Chief Justice Rita B Garman of the Illinois Supreme Court and Chief Judge Diane Wood of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. A subcommittee will review applications, interview the candidates, and select those who represent the best in academic excellence and community involvement with WBAI. Applicants must send PDF versions of their most recent law school transcript and a completed scholarship form by no later than April 15, 2014. Forms may be picked up from Barbara in Room 276.

Donald O'Brien Scholarship
Areas of Interest: Open to any first or second-year law student with ties to the State of Iowa who expresses an interest and intent to practice law in the area of civil rights, civil liberties, public interest or other areas benefiting society’s less fortunate.
Criteria: Short Application and Essay
Award: $1,000
Deadline: April 15, 2014
More Information: Please email for the application

DuPage Association of Women Lawyers Judge Helen C. Kinney Scholarship
Areas of Interest: All first, second and third year women law students, with a DuPage County connection.
Criteria: Students must submit essay, transcript, and scholarship application.
Award: $500 to one or more recipients
Deadline: April 15, 2014
More Information: Please email for the application

Federal Circuit Bar Association Scholarships 
Areas of Interest: Students with financial need who have an interest in the scope of the jurisdiction of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (e.g., international trade, government contracts, patents, trademarks, certain money claims against the United States government, federal personnel, and veterans’ benefits).
Criteria: 1L and 2 L students only. Students must submit curriculum vitae, undergraduate and law transcripts, and an original essay (no more than 450 words).
Award: Multiple need-based awards available ranging upwards of $5,000
Deadline: April 15, 2014 
More Information:

Naval War College Award for Research
Areas of Interest: Essay topic related to women and conflict outcomes.
Criteria: Papers should be approximately 6,000 words long and suitable for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.
Award: $10,000
Deadline: April 15, 2014
More Information:

The Robert Masur Fellowship in Civil Liberties 
Areas of Interest: First-year law students who intend to carry out significant activities during the summer (in between their first and second year) in the areas of civil rights and/or civil liberties.
Criteria: Applicants should send a proposal, no more than two pages, describing their intended summer project, along with a resume, a brief letter of recommendation, and the name of their faculty or organizational sponsor.
Award: Varies
Deadline: April 15, 2014 
More Information:

Clinical Law Program Summer Applications Due Tuesday, April 15

Thinking about taking a clinic this summer?

The COL’s experiential learning program currently offers four clinical courses: the Civil Justice Clinic in Rockford, the Foreclosure Mediation Clinic in Kane County, the Health Advocacy Clinic in Aurora, and the Juvenile Justice Clinic in Rockford. These clinics offer the chance to work with actual clients in a variety of settings on litigation, transactional and alternative dispute resolution matters.

The Clinic Application Form is now available online and in the Faculty Office. For Summer Semester 2014, applications are due by Tuesday, April 15, 2014 at 4:00 p.m. to Julie in Swen Parson Room 285.

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

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

Black Law Students Association Chicken & Rib BBQ

BLSA will be having a BBQ in the Marshall Gallery from 12:00 noon to 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 16. Students, faculty and staff can come and enjoy a taste of summer as BLSA provides BBQ chicken, BBQ ribs and a variety of seasonal sides. There is even a vegetarian option for the veggie lovers! Prices are $8 for a veggie plate, $9 for a chicken plate, $10 for a rib plate and $12 for a chicken and rib plate. First-come, first-served!

ACS Panel Discussion

"Who Cares About Race Anymore?: 60 Years After Brown v. Board of Education" will be held on Wednesday, April 16 at Noon in the Riley Courtroom. This will be an interdisciplinary panel featuring NIU Law's own Professor Eliva Arriola, NIU Women's Studies and Sociology Professor Kristen Myers, and NIU Political Science Professor J. Mitch Pickerill. Lunch from Rosati's Italian restaurant will be served!

SELS Panel Discussion

The NIU Law Sports and Entertainment Law Society is hosting a panel discussion called "Alternative Career Choices: Using Your Law Degree in Sports."  The panel will feature 4 NIU Law alumni:

Paul Anderson, J.D. - Associate Director, National Sports Law Institute, Marquette University Law School
Matt Jakobsze, J.D. - Associate Athletic Director, Eastern Michigan University
Jaime McGaver, J.D. - Director of Compliance, Marquette University
Christian Spears, J.D. - Deputy Director of Athletics, Northern Illinois University

The event will be held on Wednesday, April 16 at Noon in Room 188.  Lunch from Potbelly will be served. All are welcome!

Marla Dickerson Lecture on Public Interest

The annual Marla Dickerson lecture will be held on Wednesday, April 16, 2014 at 3:00 p.m. in the Riley Courtroom. This year’s lecture features renowned plaintiff’s attorney, Jan R. Schlichtmann. In 1986, Mr. Schlichtmann received national recognition for his representation of eight Woburn, Massachusetts families against W.R. Grace and Beatrice Foods for the contamination of the Woburn City water supply. The groundbreaking nature of the Woburn case has been the subject of a number of national and international television and radio shows, press reports, and magazine stories. Mr. Schlichtmann’s career and involvement in the Woburn case was chronicled in the national best seller, “A Civil Action,” which became a major motion picture starring John Travolta as Mr. Schlichtmann.

Insecure Communities: Addressing Immigration Issues in Illinois

On Wednesday, April 16, 2014 from 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. at DePaul University (DePaul Center, 1 East Jackson Boulevard, Room 8005, Chicago, IL), join the DePaul Center for Public Interest as they identify various detention and removal issues faced by undocumented residents in Illinois and how efforts are being made on the state level to address those issues.

Featuring Fred Tsao, Policy Director, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights; Mark Fleming, National Litigation Coordinator, National Immigrant Justice Center; Andrew Kang, Legal Director, Asian Americans Advancing Justice- Chicago; Viviana Martinez, Assistant Special Legal Counsel, Office of PresidentToni Preckwinkle; and Mary Meg McCarthy, Executive Director, National Immigrant Justice Center (Moderator).

PLEASE RSVP AT:  Registration is required.

Why Lawyers Should Talk to the Media

On Thursday, April 17 at 5:00 p.m. in the Riley Courtroom, attorney Karen Conti will present "Why Lawyers Should Talk to the Media."  Conti is a litigation partner at Beerman, Pritikin, Mirabelli, Swerdlove LLP.  She has litigated noteworthy cases both in Illinois and across the country in a wide variety of practice areas.  For 15 years, she has been the designated local Chicago Fox affiliate legal expert, and she has a weekly segment on WGN-Radio.  She is also regular on Nancy Grace and has a weekly segment on CNN Newsroom with Don Lemon.  The event is sponsored by the Career Opportunities and Development office and the NIU Law Women's Law Caucus.

GSA Presents Discussion on Transgender Issues with Attorney Paula Kohut

The NIU Gay Straight Law Student Alliance will host a discussion on Transgender issues facilitated by Attorney Paula Kohut. The event will be held Thursday, April 17th, 2014 from noon-1 p.m. in Room 187.  Lunch from Rosati's Italian restaurant will be provided for all who attend.

Research Assistant Needed for Professor Widman

Professor Widman is looking for a research assistant for next year. 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 and legislation. I expect some of the work to also 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 17. Applications must be submitted in hard copy, not electronically.

Research Assistants Needed for Professor Falkoff

Professor Falkoff is looking for two research assistants for the 2014-2015 academic year to assist him with projects relating to criminal law -- likely including topics on the Illinois eavesdropping act, habeas corpus, and neurolaw. The assistants will be expected to gather books and articles, proofread drafts, and take care of spot legal research assignments. No criminal law or procedure courses are prerequisites, but strong organization skills, an eye for detail, and enthusiasm are. Preference will be given to 3L students, but 2L students may apply. Each assistant will be entitled to a half-tuition waiver. To apply, please submit in hard copy a short cover letter explaining your interest, along with a current resume and an official law school transcript. The deadline for applications is Monday, April 21 at noon. Late applications will not be accepted for any reason, so consider handing in your application early. Failure to comply with any of these requirements will make it unlikely your candidacy will be successful.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Workers' Compensation with Prof. Oswalt cancelled for 4/8/14

Professor Oswalt has cancelled his Workers' Compensation class for today, Tuesday, April 8th.  He will e-mail students through Blackboard regarding the class.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Important Memo to 3L Students Regarding Graduation

May 2014 Graduates:

The Office of Budget and Records has important information for you regarding Graduation Announcements, Cap and Gown Pickup, Photos and Video at the Graduation Ceremony, and the Schedule for Graduation Day.  This is all must-know information, so read it soon and read it twice.  The document will be e-mailed to you, placed in your mailbox, and can be seen here

Scholarship Deadlines Coming Up This Week

Beveridge & Diamond Constitutional Environmental Law Writing Competition 
Areas of Interest: Students may develop their own constitutional environmental law topic or submit a piece exploring a suggested topic provided
Criteria: Submissions may be of any length up to a maximum of 50 pages
Award: $2000 cash, an offer of publication in the Environmental Law Reporter, and a one-year individual membership to ELI
Deadline: April 7, 2014
More Information:

Admiralty & Maritime Law Committee Law Student Writing Competition 
Areas of Interest: Essays should address a recent development in admiralty and maritime law.
Criteria: Essays must not exceed 20 pages of double-spaced typed text
Award: $500 Prize; a $500 in reimbursement for attending the TIPS Spring Meeting in Boca Raton, FL or the ABA Annual Meeting in Boston, MA; and, publication in a 2014 edition of the Admiralty and Maritime Law Committee newsletter.
Deadline: April 11, 2014
More Information:

Pizza With the Deans This Wednesday

Here is your opportunity to ask questions, give suggestions, or just talk with the Deans. On Wednesday, April 9 at 12:00 noon in the Marshall Gallery, there will be an open forum for students to air their views with the Deans while enjoying some pizza! All students are encouraged to attend.

CLS Panel Discussion This Thursday

Christian Legal Society presents a panel discussion on “The Integration of Faith and the Practice of Law.” With Guest Panelists: David Goles, Partner, Swanson, Martin, & Bell, LLP; and Stephen Hsu, Solo Practitioner, Law Offices of Stephen Hsu.  Thursday, April 10th from 3:00 p.m. – 4:15 p.m. in Room 186. Light snacks will be provided!

Federalist Society Debate and Social Events This Week

The Federalist Society invites you to a night jam-packed with enlightened debate, food, and drink. On Thursday, April 10th at 5:00 p.m. in Room 186, the Federalist Society All-Star Debate between Ilya Shapiro and J. Christian Adams will take place. The two will go head-to-head arguing whether campaign finance restrictions or gerrymandered legislative districts are worse for our political system. The position Ilya Shapiro is arguing was just addressed by the Supreme Court, in an opinion that came out this week. This will be a unique opportunity to hear Shapiro speak on such a fresh opinion. The link to the opinion is here:

Immediately following the debate, the first annual Scotch & Cigar Night social will be held at Fanatico in DeKalb from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. We expect appearances by the debate speakers as well as alums and other attorneys. To get your tickets, please fill out an order form e-mailed to you or placed in your student mailbox. Last but not least, head over to Molly’s at 9:00 p.m. for Bar Review! Questions? E-mail

Law Review Symposium This Friday

The Law Review Symposium on the Voting Rights Act will discuss the effects of the Shelby County case and what it means for the future of voting rights in Illinois and across the country. The symposium is on Friday, April 11 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the Holmes Student Center. All students attend sessions for free. Please register at by clicking on "Events."