May 8, 2024

Year In Review

Year In Review

As commencement approaches, we reflect on the year we have had at Appalachian school of law. Victories, growth, and legacy.  Let’s look back at 2023-2024.

In August and January, we welcomed our new 1L students with Supreme Court Justice Teresa M. Chafin administering the professionalism oath, and a special message from Supreme Court Justice and ASL Diversity Mentor, Cleo Powell.

We also welcomed and introduced Colonel David “D.J.” Western Appointed as Interim President & Dean of Appalachian School of Law.

In September;

  • We became a Virginia Law Foundation 2023 Grant recipient. With an award of $25,000 in support of our Medical-Legal Partnership.
  • We welcomed Professor Cynthia Tompkins as our Constitution Day speaker.
  • We visited by Mr. Chidi James, VSB President.
  • We announced the winner of the 2024 Thomas F. Blackwell Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Legal Writing, Kristen K. Tiscione.
  • Our SBA welcomed new representatives.
  • We were honored to host Major General Douglas Schiess as a guest speaker during its Space Law class.

In October;

  • We announced our “3+3” agreement with King University.
  • We hosted a very informative session titled Funding Your Bar Exam Experience.
  • Six ASL students attended the Energy and Mineral Law Foundation (EMLF) Fall Symposium in Lexington, Kentucky.
  • The Annual ASL Memorial 5K Run/Walk took place.

In November;

  • Phi Delta Phi initiated three new members that satisfied the requirements for membership, including upholding a GPA of 3.0 or better.
  • A beautiful Veteran’s Day Program was hosted by Veterans Law Student Association with a presentation from CSM (R) Daniel L. Pinion.
  • Virginia Bar Association President Ben Leigh spoke to the Honors Program Students and SBA Leadership about his experiences as a “Main Street attorney” in Virginia.
  • Professor Jeremy W. Hurley, made a significant contribution at the recent LexCon symposium and conference in Chicago.
  • Esteemed speakers Susan M. Butler, Esq., Rob M. Worster, III, Esq., and the Honorable Jacqueline F. Ward Talevi shared invaluable insights on professionalism and fostering strong client and court relationships with Prof. Gallagher’s Building Professional Identity class.
  • We re-introduced our Alumni Spotlight series.

In December;

  • We celebrated another “Giving Day” to continue our legacy and students sailed through fall semester final exams.

In January

  • Our Appellate Advocacy Course students took part in an intraschool Moot Court Competition. Champion- Emma Walpole Lassiter, Runner-Up- Florence Turner, Finalists- Kalee Richardson, Sidney McLaughlin, Joshua Marant, Richard Rundle, Lindsey Lowe, Megan Chumbley.

In February;

  • We released our Fall Dean’s List of 10 3L students and 11 2L students. -Tyler Starnes and Meredith Waugh represented ASL at the National Environmental Law Moot Court Competition (NELMCC) at Pace University.  They advanced to the quarterfinals.
  • An ASL team of Addie Hodges, Gail Bell, and Dale Wolf participated by Zoom in a regional round of the ABA’s Client Counseling Competition which is a much different format than mock trial and moot court competitions.  Doing the research and stepping out for a new format of competition is the kind of growth our students are bringing to ASL!
  • ASL’s basketball team claimed a 72-50 victory over ACP’s basketball team to win the Coalfield Cup title for 2024!

In March

  • Joshua Marant (2L), Richard Rundle (2L), and Emma Walpole Lassiter (2L) made it to the semifinals of the Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Court Competition for the North American region in Washington D.C and won Best New Team.
  • The ASL Child Welfare Moot Court Team did the school proud by making it to the elimination rounds at the Capital competition. Lindsey Lowe (2L), Megan Chumbley (2L), Melanie Hicks (2L), and Coach Professor Shelly James made us proud.
  • Jeremy W. Hurley, a distinguished member of our faculty, represented ASL as one of the two North American representatives at the prestigious international conference titled “The Transformative Potential of Generative Artificial Intelligence, Law, and Legal Education: Opportunities, Challenges, and the Way Forward,” hosted by the University of Central Punjab in Lahore, Pakistan.
  • The ASL Clara Barton International Humanitarian Law Competition team, coached by Interim President and Dean D.J. Western, included: Sidney McLaughlin, 2L, Shawn Smith, 3L, and Dale Wolf, 3L.  They competed at the American Red Cross’s headquarters in Washington DC.
  • ASL introduced our newest Student Bar Association Officers, Justices, and Senators.

In April

  • We were thankful to host an enlightening presentation by The Appalachian Research and Defense Fund of Kentucky, Inc., known as “AppalReD Legal Aid,” on Friday, March 22 during Professor Gallagher’s BPI class.
  • Two ASL softball teams traveled to Charlottesville, VA for the UVA Law Softball Invitational
  • We had the honor of hosting a distinguished panel from the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, including Chief Judge Margaret Bartley, Judge Grant Jaquith, and Judge Amanda Meredith. This esteemed panel heard an actual case in our courtroom, giving invaluable experience to our students.
  • For the first time, the 1Ls all competed in an actual Moot Court Tournament. In the past, they participated in an in-class argument.  This experience will prepare our students to continue being competitive teams in different Moot Court competitions.  Finalists of the 1L Moot Court Tournament were Allainah Easterling (winner), Taylor Schmook, Joshua Ramsey, and Cody Tackett.


Farewell 3L class, go continue to make us proud!

Pictured is a small token gift for our 3L students.

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