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Encyclopedia > City University of New York School of Law

The City University of New York School of Law is a law school operated by the City University of New York (CUNY). Although adjacent to Queens College in Flushing, Queens, New York, it is administratively separate. The School opened in 1983 and "it is the only law school which, from inception, has defined its mission as training law students for public service."[1] Accordingly, the school's motto is Law in the Service of Human Needs. CUNY School of Law's child care center was the first of its kind at a US law school. In the United States, a law school is an institution where students obtain a professional education in law. ... The City University of New York (CUNY; acronym: IPA pronunciation: ), is the public university system of New York City. ... Queens College is one of the senior colleges of the City University of New York. ... Several landmarks from two New York Worlds Fairs still stand in Flushing Meadows, including the US Steel Unisphere Flushing is a neighborhood within the borough of Queens in New York City, New York. ... Queens is geographically the largest of the five boroughs of New York City in the United States, and the most ethnically diverse county in the U.S. It is coterminous with Queens County in the State of New York and is located on western Long Island. ...

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg called CUNY School of Law "an institution of incomparable value" in legal education. CUNY's focus on practical lawyering skills has had a significant impact on legal pedagogy across the nation. As a result of CUNY's leadership now many, if not most, law schools offer significant clinical opportunities for their students.

The clinical program of the school was ranked #5 by US News in 2005. The school is ranked overall as a 4th-tier law school by US News in 2007. In 2007, US News also ranks CUNY as one of the most diverse law schools. It's also on the list as being one of the least expensive law schools U.S. News & World Report is a weekly newsmagazine. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ...

In its 2007 Guide "The Best 170 Law Schools", the Princeton Review named CUNY Law the "4th Most Diverse Faculty", "3rd Most Left Leaning Student Body" and the "7th Most Welcoming to Older Students" The Princeton Review (TPR) is a for-profit American educational preparation company. ...

Students of the law school publish the New York City Law Review.


Current Dean

Michelle J. Anderson, Dean of the Law School and Professor (appointed in 2006), is a Yale Law School graduate. Her previous position was as a member of the faculty of Villanova University School of Law from 1998 to 2006, where she taught criminal law, criminal procedure, children and the law, and feminist legal theory. Dean Anderson is an honors graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she earned a B.A. degree in Community Studies in 1989 and the Chancellor's Award for outstanding academic achievement. Her article "Understanding Rape Shield Laws" was the basis for a proposal to reform the Wyoming rape shield law. The bill passed the House but unfortunately did not pass the Wyoming Senate. Dean Anderson is a member of the Board of Directors and Policy Chair for the National Alliance to End Sexual Violence. The Sterling Law Building Sculptural ornamentation on the Sterling Law Building Yale Law School, or YLS, is the law school of Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. ... “UCSC” redirects here. ...

Former Deans

Charlie Halpern, founder of the D.C.-based Center for Law and Social Policy, a Georgetown law professor, and the acknowledged "father of public interest law" was the first Dean of CUNY Law.

Haywood Burns, a famous civil rights attorney, was the school's second and most-notable Dean. Haywood Burns' civil rights career began at age 15, when he helped integrate the swimming pool in Peekskill, New York. As a law student at Yale, he participated in the 1964 Freedom Summer in Mississippi. He was Assistant Counsel to the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and later served as General Counsel to Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Poor People's Campaign. A founder of the National Conference of Black Lawyers, he was the first African American Dean of a New York law school, leading the CUNY School of Law to full ABA accreditation.

Kristin Booth Glen, CUNY Law's previous Dean, stepped down after being elected to the Manhattan Surrogate's Court and was replaced by interim Dean Mary Lu Bilek. Dean Bilek, a graduate of Harvard Law School has since stepped down from her position, giving way to Michelle Anderson, but has remained at the University as the Dean of Special Projects. Manhattan is a borough of New York City, New York, USA, coterminous with New York County. ... The New York State Surrogates Court is the court which handles all probate and estate proceedings in the State of New York. ...

Notable Faculty Achievements

  • In 2006, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo appointed CUNY School of Law Prof. Jenny Rivera as Special Deputy Attorney General for Civil Rights.
  • Prof. Julie Goldscheid is a Commissioner of the ABA Commission on Domestic Violence and serves on the Advisory Board of NYLAG's Domestic Violence Appellate Representation Project. Goldscheid is the former Legal Director at Legal Momentum.
  • Prof. Caitlin Borgmann presented her paper The Meaning of 'Life': Abortion and Fetal Personhood at the International Society for Family Law North American Regional Conference held in 2006. She also serves on Barack Obama's Women's Policy Committee.
  • Prof. Ruthann Robson was named Distinguished Professor by the CUNY Board of Trustees in 2007. Prof. Robson was also the keynote speaker at Standard Margin: Contemporary Issues in Canadian Law & Sexuality, a conference held at the University of British Columbia in 2006.
  • Prof. Andrea McArdle presented a session on the design and teaching of her judicial writing course at the 2007 Biennial Conference of the Association of Legal Writing Directors (ALWD) held in Denver on June 14-16. The conference theme was "Best Practices in Teaching, Management, and Scholarship."
  • Prof. Ruthann Robson received a New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) Fellowship.
  • In 2007, Prof. Beryl Blaustone joined a delegation of judges and dignitaries working with Yale Law School in Beijing, Peoples Republic of China, as a Mediation Expert assisting in the instruction of how to include Legal Mediation into Civil Small Claims Court Administration.
  • Prof. Natalie Gomez-Velez serves on the N.Y. State Board of Regents, which sets education policy. She also was appointed by Chief Judge Judith Kaye to serve on the Judicial Screening Committee. Also, Prof. Gomes-Velez has been appointed by Chief Judge Kaye to serve as a member of the Independent Judicial Election Qualification Commission for the Twelfth Judicial District (the Bronx).
  • Prof. Rebecca Bratspies participated in The "New" New Haven School: International Law--Past, Present & Future, a conference at Yale Law School and presented her article, Crafting a Green Landing for Spaceship Earth: Some Navigational Advice from the New Haven School She was also the co-organizer of Free Trade or Fair? The Softwood Lumber Dispute and Beyond, the 5th Annual International Law Symposium in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.
  • Prof. Penelope Andrews' article, Learning to Love After Learning to Harm: Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Gender Equality and Cultural Values, was recently published in 15 Mich. J. Int'l L. 41 (2007). Her article "The South African Judicial Appointments Process" has been published in the Osgoode Hall Law Journal.
  • Prof. David Nadvorney is the newest contributing editor of the Law School Academic Support (ASP) Blog.
  • Prof. Rhonda Copelon won the 2006 Ruth G. Schapiro Memorial Award.
  • Prof. Sid Harring's report Our Land They Took: San land rights under threat in Namibia, which he co-wrote with Willem Odendaal, was published by the Legal Assistance Centre of Namibia. T
  • Prof. Debbie Zalesne's article "Lessons from Equal Opportunity Harasser Doctrine: Challenging Sex-Specific Appearance and Dress Codes" has been published in the Duke Journal of Gender Law and Policy. The piece challenges the doctrine upholding sex-specific dress codes (e.g., women required to wear makeup, men required to keep their hair short).

CUNY Law's Awards & Honors

  • "Public Interest School of the Year", given by the Student Division of the American Bar Association (1998)
  • The National Association of Public Interest Law (NAPIL) named Kristin Booth Glen, Dean of the City University of New York (CUNY) School of Law, as "1998 Law School Dean of the Year."
  • In 2007, the Carnegie Foundation issued a report praising CUNY School of Law for its use of an innovative curriculum with a stronger focus on practical lawyering skills.

Year 1998 (MCMXCVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display full 1998 Gregorian calendar). ... The Carnegie Foundation (Carnegie Stichting in Dutch) is a organization based in The Hague, The Netherlands. ...

Notable Alumni

Rev. Dr. Iyanla Vanzant, life coach on NBC's Starting Over was a 1988 graduate of CUNY School of Law. Starting Over is a 1979 film which tells the story of a man who is torn between his new girlfriend and his ex-wife. ...

External links



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