Magazine names LMU Law a ‘Best Value’ law school

image001Knoxville, Tenn. — preLaw Magazine published its “Best Value” issue in October, naming Lincoln Memorial University’s Duncan School of Law a Best Value Private Law School.

The distinction came after the magazine calculated an estimated “true tuition,” the average amount students pay once grants and scholarships are factored, and weighted it with other factors including graduate employment rates, bar passage, debt and cost of living in ranking private law schools.

LMU Law was recognized among institutions including Boston College, Boston University, Brigham Young University, Wake Forest University, Washington and Lee University and Washington University in St. Louis, among others. A total of 13 private law schools were included on the national list.

It marks the first time LMU has been added to the list and comes on the heels of the school’s most successful bar exam showing to date. With a first-time taker pass rate of 87.5 percent, LMU Law beat the state average of 73.23 percent for first-time bar takers on the July 2016 examination. LMU Law’s first-time taker pass rate, re-exam pass rate, and overall pass rate were each the second-highest among all Tennessee law schools.

Since the law school graduated its first class in May 2013, 93 percent of LMU Law graduates who have taken a bar exam have passed it.

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LMU Law hosts ‘Wills for Warriors’ event

willsforwarriors1 Knoxville, Tenn. — Students, faculty and alumni of Lincoln Memorial University’s Duncan School of Law assisted active military and veterans by answering questions and preparing wills on Saturday, Oct. 22, during its inaugural Wills for Warriors event.

Estate planning can be an uncomfortable and expensive process. However, without a will in place, the state will determine who will receive assets, who will become guardian for minor children and how and by whom an estate will be settled. The LMU Law event provided veterans and service members an opportunity to draft, sign and notarize a Last Will and Testament, free of charge.

LMU Law’s Veterans Law Society sponsored the event and was assisted by Knox County Veteran Service Officer Tom Humphries, the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association, Vet2Vet Greater Smoky Mountains and Steve Parella of the Vet Clinic, all of whom helped to get the word out. VLS officers Jacob Ankrom, Tony Hill, Shane Pertain and Michael Caldwell, all second-year law students, organized the event and recruited faculty members Bruce Beverly and Akram Faizer and six LMU Law alumni to provide pro bono legal services. A total of 26 LMU Law students participated in the event, which was the first of its kind at LMU Law.

During the event, veterans and service members completed a questionnaire with first-year law students and were matched, based on the results, with upper-level law students and faculty to complete their will forms and filing. Twenty wills were completed and three additional consultations were held during the event.

While this was the first Wills for Warriors event at LMU Law, the Veterans Law Society assisted Vet2Vet of the Greater Smoky Mountains in filing for its Tennessee Domestic Non-Profit Corporation status in June. The student organization plans to hold other events to benefit veterans later this year.

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Annual McMurtry lecture to feature expert on Lincoln

farber-color-5x7Harrogate, Tenn. — Lincoln Memorial University’s annual R. Gerald McMurtry Lecture will feature Dr. Daniel A. Farber, Sho Sato Professor of Law at University of California, Berkeley. The program, presented by the Abraham Lincoln Institute for the Study of Leadership and Public Policy and LMU’s Duncan School of Law, is slated for noon on Thursday, Oct. 27, in the LMU Law Courtroom at 601 W. Summit Hill Drive in Knoxville. It is free and open to the public.

Farber will present a lecture entitled, “Lincoln and the Transformation of American Constitutional Law.” The presentation will explore the notion that Lincoln offered a vision of American identity at Gettysburg that united nationhood, democracy and human rights. That vision was both a reinterpretation of the past and a prelude to the future. Much of the development of constitutional law since then can be seen as an effort to work out the implications of Lincoln’s vision of America.

Farber is the author of Lincoln’s Constitution, a book that probes critical constitutional issues faced by Lincoln. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a life member of the American Law Institute. After serving as law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, Farber practiced law in Washington, D.C., and taught at the University of Illinois and the University of Minnesota. He is the author of more than 175 law review articles and 18 books. Much of his scholarly activity has been devoted to constitutional issues, including the books Judgement Calls: Politics and Principle in Constitutional Law, and Retained by the People: The ‘Silent’ Ninth Amendment and the Constitutional Rights Americans Don’t Know They Have.

The lecture will be simulcast to the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum on the LMU Main Campus in Harrogate, Tenn. One hour of general CLE credit is available for attorneys. A $10 box lunch will be available. Please email Kathy.baughman@LMUnet.edu to reserve a space and register for CLE credit.

LMU’s Abraham Lincoln Institute for the Study of Leadership and Public Policy encourages original research in the emerging field of leadership theory and practice. The Institute seeks to identify opportunities for scholars, teachers and those engaged in public service to develop and practice responsible and ethical leadership. The staff and personnel associated with the Institute strive to create a positive research environment that will stimulate and enrich a variety of research undertakings.

 

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LMU Law posts highest bar pass rate in school history

Oct. 7, 2016 — Lincoln Memorial University’s John J. Duncan, Jr., School of Law posted the highest first-time pass rate in school history with the release of the July 2016 Tennessee bar exam results on Friday.

With a first-time pass rate of 87.5 percent, LMU Law beat the state average of 73.23 percent for first-time bar takers. Three out of the four re-examinees from LMU Law, or 75 percent, also passed the July 2016 examination. LMU Law’s first-time pass rate, re-examination pass rate, and overall pass rate of 85 percent were each the second-highest among all Tennessee law schools.

“Our law school has some very happy graduates today,” said Vice President and Dean Gary R. Wade. “I credit our top notch faculty and staff for the development of an excellent Class of 2016. Of course, Associate Dean Tommy Sangchompuphen and the academic success and bar preparation programs merit special kudos for their efforts, but the real champions are the students themselves. This year’s graduates have distinguished themselves through their remarkable work ethic and their dedication to the future of the profession.”

Since the law school graduated its first class in May 2013, 93 percent of LMU Law graduates who have taken a bar exam have passed it.

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LMU to renovate historic building for Legal Aid of East Tennessee

DSC04835August 22, 2016 — In recognition of the need to provide high-quality legal services for those who otherwise could not afford to hire a lawyer, Lincoln Memorial University, with the cooperation of the Old City Hall Knoxville Partnership and the City of Knoxville, has agreed to fully renovate the Stair Building at LMU’s Duncan School of Law and lease it to Legal Aid of East Tennessee (LAET) for $1 a year.

Representatives from LMU, the City of Knoxville and LAET were on hand to sign lease documents during a ceremony in front of the historic Stair Building at LMU Law on Monday, August 22, 2016. LMU President B. James Dawson, Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero, LAET Executive Director Sheri Fox and LAET Board President Donald F. Mason, Jr., formalized the agreement.

LMU plans to invest over $1 million to restore and preserve the historic building, which is owned by the City of Knoxville.

“Our commitment to restore the historic Stair Building on our campus in Knoxville not only provides for a long-term visible presence for Legal Aid of East Tennessee accessible to the many people in this service area, but also offers our students the opportunity to develop their skills by volunteering their services and gaining practical experience in preparation for the practice of law,” said LMU Law Vice President and Dean Gary R. Wade. “I am especially grateful to the Mayor and the City Council for their leadership in this important initiative.”

For over 50 years, the lawyers of LAET have been advocating for the rights of Knoxville’s most vulnerable citizens, helping ensure fair legal representation regardless of how much money they have.

“The generosity of LMU and the cooperation of the Old City Hall Knoxville Partnership and the City in making this arrangement possible send a clear message that justice for all is a priority in this community,” Fox said. “Not only will this generosity help LAET narrow the justice gap, but it also means that our clients and our entire staff will reap the numerous benefits of working in modern, beautifully appointed office space with upgraded technology.”

Demolition and construction on the site has already begun. Following renovations, LAET will move its Knoxville office from its current location on Gay Street in early 2017. The building will house attorneys, paralegals, administrative and support staff, and LAET’s information technology center.

Mayor Rogero, who noted she has worked in both the Stair Building and the LMU Law Building in the past, applauded the cooperation of two like-minded organizations seeking to serve the citizens of Knoxville and beyond.

“This arrangement will ensure that Legal Aid can continue to provide high-quality legal services to families across our region who can’t afford a lawyer. It likewise provides opportunities for LMU Law students to roll up their sleeves and start helping clients immediately,” Rogero said. “But really, it’s an even better deal, because this lease arrangement brings a rare historic structure back into reuse. So this is a win-win-win situation.”

The entire LMU Law site, including the Stair Building, sits on land originally donated by merchant Calvin Morgan in 1844. The State originally appropriated funds for the construction of what came to be known as the Tennessee School for the Deaf, which opened in 1848. The school was converted to a Civil War hospital in 1861, first serving Confederate forces and later Union forces. After the war, the school reopened and operated on the same site until 1924, when Knoxville acquired the land for its City Hall. The City used the location until 1980, when its offices were moved into the City-County Building, but retained ownership of the buildings, which have been placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Tennessee Valley Authority and Knoxville Area Partnership occupied the property for several years until LMU acquired the lease in 2008 and opened LMU Law in 2009.

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LMU | DUNCAN SCHOOL OF LAW
601 West Summit Hill Drive
Knoxville, TN 37902

865.545.5300 Main Number
423.869.6914 Fax Number
865.545.5303 Admissions

Lincoln Memorial University

Accreditation Statement
Lincoln Memorial University - John J. Duncan, Jr. School of Law (LMU-DSOL) is provisionally accredited
by the American Bar Association (ABA).

Information About the ABA’s Accreditation Process

Questions concerning ABA accreditation may be directed to:

          Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar
          American Bar Association
          321 N. Clark Street, 21st Floor
          Chicago, IL 60654
          Phone: 312.988.6738

Additionally, Lincoln Memorial University - Duncan School of Law is approved by the
Tennessee Board of Law Examiners.