LAS Legal Interests Committee
Prof. Bette L. Bottoms, Department of Psychology
(Chair of committee and Associate Dean for Legal Studies)
Prof. Matthew Lippman, Department of Criminal Justice
Prof. Evan McKenzie, Department of Political Science
Prof. Walter Benn Michaels, Department of English
UIC, and LAS in particular, has the potential to offer a lot to undergraduates who are interested in the study of law. Our committee was appointed in 2006 by Dean Chris Comer to determine a plan to collect and organize all relevant information, advertise programs and resources, and determine what is needed to solidify and support the presence of law at UIC, especially in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. A key element of our charge is to help pre-law undergraduates at UIC attain their goal of having a career in law, by ensuring that they have the resources to become well-prepared for law school and to gain admission to quality law schools. Our activities also benefit faculty interested in law and legal research.
A sample of the committee’s accomplishments thus far:
- Participated in the search and hiring of the new Pre-Law Advisor, Ms. Adekemi Faleti, who provides daily support for pre-law students.
- Linked with the student Pre-law Society (Evan McKenzie = faculty advisor) and conducted a presentation on various law school issues for over 45 undergraduates interested in pre-law.
- Aided the Pre-Law Society by providing funding for LSAT preparation books and practice tests, which they have used in LSAT preparation workshops.
- Participated in Town Hall meetings for new undergraduate students on the topic of law.
- Helped to clarify requirements of the Kent College of Law 3 + 3 early admissions program.
- Devised plans to help prepare UIC students for law school, including creation of this website to package resources for students, and designing workshops (e.g., on the LSAT, how to prepare a personal statement, what careers law leads to, etc.).
- Conducted a survey of all departments to identify all LAS faculty interests, research, projects, courses, and curricula relevant to legal issues.
- Co-sponsored scholarly talks related to the law (e.g., a panel presentation of two noted speakers on the topic of the Supreme Court’s decision in the case brought by President Bush regarding the rights of prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay).
- Arranged for over 40 new Cook County Assistant State’s Attorneys to serve as mentors to our pre-law students.
- Planned for a generous financial gift from Mr. William Lamar to go toward scholarships for LSAT preparation courses for our students.
- Devised an ongoing list of future activities.