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Asst. Dean Stephen D. Sowle

Week of January 18, 2010
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Welcome Back! Congratulations to all first-year students on completing your first semester of law school, and to upper-level students for making it one semester closer to graduation. I hope everyone had a restful holiday break.

U-Pass Distribution. Distribution of Spring 2010 U-Passes will take place as follows:

*Thursday, January 14, 2:00-3:30pm, Front Lobby
*Friday, January 15, 12:00-1:30pm, Front Lobby
*Tuesday, January 19, 11:30-1:00pm and 3:00-4:30pm, Front Lobby

After Tuesday, January 19, you may pick up your U-Pass from the Registrar's office. For more information on the U-Pass program and which students qualify for participation in the program, see the U-Pass FAQ.

You will not receive a U-Pass during the initial distribution period if you registered for classes late or do not have a picture in our ID system. In either of those cases, please contact Jenna Abhijeet (jabhijeet@kentlaw.edu) to explain your situation, and we will put you on our supplemental order list after we confirm your status.

Note to International LL.M. students and visiting students: You qualify for a U-Pass if you are registered for at least 12 credit hours for the Spring semester. If you are reigstered for fewer than 12 credit hours, you do not qualify for a U-Pass.

Spring 2010 Semester Information. The Spring 2010 Term Information page has most of the information you will need in advance of the start of the Spring semester - click here, or go to the main Student Portal page and click on the Spring '10 link under "Academic term information." Print copies of most of the documents described below are available outside the third floor cafeteria.

Initial Reading Assignments. Initial reading assignments for the first week of the Spring semester are available on the Spring 2010 Term Information page. The list of assignments has been revised from its initial version as follows:

*New assignments added 1/11/10: Commercial Real Estate Transactions (Prof. Stern); Employment Discrimination (Prof. R. Gonzalez); Environmental Law & Policy 2 (Prof. Stern); Estates & Trusts (Prof. Decatorsmith); Family Law (Prof. Aamot); International Trade (Prof. Hill); Police Misconduct Litigation (Profs. Kamionski & Antholt); Real Estates Fundamentals & Syndications (Profs. Rothbart & Delrahim); Tax Procedure (Prof. Decatorsmith)

*Revised assignment 1/11/10: Professional Responsibility (day section) (Prof. Shapiro)

Not all professors submit initial assignments, so do not be concerned if there is no listing for one or more of your Spring courses.

Revised Spring Schedule (with Classroom Assignments). A revised copy of the Spring 2010 Schedule of Classes, including classroom assignments, is available on the Spring 2010 Term Information page. Classroom assignments will also be posted in the front lobby before classes start.

Course Information Updates. Course information updates for Spring classes are available on the Spring 2010 Term Information page.

Trial Advocacy Section Assignments. If you are registered for Trial Advocacy 1 or Trial Advocacy 2 for the Spring semester, a list of section assignments is available on the Spring 2010 Term Information page. Note: If your section meets at the Daley Center, please be sure to bring your Kent ID card with you, as you may be required to show it when you enter.

Pass/Fail Elections. Pass/fail elections for the Spring must be made no later than Friday, February 12. This deadline is firm. Please review § 2.4 "Pass/Fail Election" of the Student Handbook if you have any questions regarding your pass/fail elections. In order to make your election you should log in to your Webmail account; click on the Web for Students icon; select the "Take Class Pass/Fail option" under the "On Line Forms" heading; select the course you would like to take on a pass/fail basis; and submit your selection. If there is any problem with your request, the Registrar's Office will notify you.

Adding and Dropping Classes. You may add an open course without special permission until the end of the first week of Spring classes; during the second week, however, you may add an open course only with permission of the instructor. You may not add a course after the second week of the semester.

You may withdraw from any course except a required course, a clinical course, Law Review, Moot Court, or Intensive Trial Advocacy at any time prior to the date of the final exam or final paper (see §3.10(c) of the Student Handbook). There is no tuition penalty if you drop a course during the first two weeks of classes. You will not receive a tuition refund, however, if you drop a course after the second week of classes.

Exam Schedule. A copy of the Spring 2010 exam schedule is available on the Spring 2010 Term Information page. Please note that you are permitted to register for courses with exams scheduled at the same time; one exam will be rescheduled for you.

The Student Handbook requires that you take your finals at the times scheduled unless you have an exam conflict (as defined below), or you have a "serious illness or other extraordinary or compelling reason" beyond your control. A Final Exam Reschedule Form will be posted later this semester through Web for Students.

A student is deemed to have an "exam conflict" if he or she has two exams at the same time, or has two or more exams within 24 hours (e.g., exams at 8:30 a.m. and 6:00 p.m., or at 6:00 p.m. and 1:15 the following afternoon). A conflict does not exist if two exams are scheduled exactly 24 hours apart (e.g., exams at 8:30 a.m. one morning and 8:30 a.m. the next morning).

Bookstore Hours. The bookstore's hours are available on the Spring 2010 Term Information page.

Academic Calendar. The academic calendar for the Spring semester is available on the Spring 2010 Term Information page.

Graduating Students: Reduced Loads and Tuition Discounts. Graduating seniors needing fewer than the minimum number of hours to graduate may take fewer credits without special permission. In addition, if you will be graduating at the end of the Spring 2010, and will be taking more than the 87 credits required to graduate, you may receive a 50% discount on each credit you take over the required 87 credits. If this affects you, please contct me by email no later than Friday, February 5, and I will arrange for the credit to be applied to your account.

Taking Courses at the Stuart School. Upper-level Chicago-Kent students are allowed to take up to two non-law, graduate-level courses, with my permission, including courses offered at the Stuart School of Business. Please contact the Registrar's office for information about the Stuart School's Spring schedule.

Bar Preparation Class. Through the generosity of Prof. Conviser and BAR-BRI, we are offering a no-credit, free class this Spring that will provide an early opportunity to begin preparing for the bar exam. The class will meet at least six times during the semester on Thursdays 4:00-5:50 pm, and is geared toward general bar preparation (not just Illinois).  The class is open to both J.D. and LL.M. students graduating in May who plan to take a bar exam this summer or next winter.  The class will be taught by Stephanie Goetz of BAR-BRI.  If you are interested in signing up for the class, please email me at ssowle@kentlaw.edu.  --SDS.

Fall 2009 Grade Submissions. Grades for the Fall semester are due no more than five weeks from the date of the exam or, for non-exam courses, five weeks from the last day of the exam period. Exams ended on Monday, December 21, so all Fall grades should be in by Monday, Janaury 25.

New TouchNet Payment Service. The university now allows students the option of having their financial aid refunds direct deposited into their checking or savings account. Click here for more information on the new TouchNet service. 

Academic Counseling. I am available for counseling about course selection, certificate programs, bar preparation, academic rules and regulations, and other academic matters. If you are interested in a particular area of law, I can also arrange for you to meet with a faculty member who specializes in that area. You may contact me by email (ssowle@kentlaw.edu), phone (312/9096-5282), or by stopping by my office (320C).

Illinois Bar Exam: Informational Sessions. As announced in the Fall, the Illinois bar examiners will be holding informational sessions for first-year students, and for third-year and fourth-year students approaching graduation, on Thursday, January 21, 2010. These sessions are for all Chicago-area law students. You should plan to attend one of the January 21 sessions if (1) you are a first-year student and you have questions about the first-year bar registration process, (2) you are a third-year or fourth-year student planning on taking the February 2010 or July 2010 bar exams and you have questions about the application or character and fitness process, or (3) you are a student at any stage of your studies and you have questions about the character and fitness process. Here are further details, as provided by the bar examiners' office:

IBABY character and fitness information sessions for ALL Chicago first year law student registrants and ALL Chicago third year applicants for the February and July 2010 bar examinations are scheduled to be held on Thursday, January 21, 2010, in the Auditorium of the American Dental Association building located at 211 East Chicago Avenue.

The first session will begin at noon and will be held for third year students, the second at 5 PM for first year students, and a third at 7 PM again for third years. First year students not available to attend the 5 PM session, however, would benefit from attendance at one of the other two sessions because although those noon and 7 PM sessions will be tailored to third years, the basic information and instruction are the same. There is no fee, and advance registration is not required.

Bar Registration for First-Year Students. First-year students who plan to take the Illinois Bar Examination after graduation should register with the Illinois bar examiners. The registration materials are due by March 1, 2010. The forms and instructions are available on the bar examiners' web site: http://www.ibaby.org.

Although you are not required to register as a first-year student, the advantage of doing so is that you will avoid paying substantial additional fees if you apply to take the bar at any point after March of their first year. If you are uncertain whether you intend to practice in Illinois, you may want to consider waiting to register and paying the late fee should you eventually decide to take the Illinois bar exam. The application form is very comprehensive and requires you to provide a significant amount of background information, some of which may be difficult to remember or obtain. I suggest that, if you do plan to register by the March deadline, you begin working on the materials sooner rather than later. If you have any questions about the application materials, you may call the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar at 217/522-5917.

All information you disclose on the bar registration application should be consistent with answers to questions on your Application for Admission to the law school. Please note, however, that the bar registration application asks for a considerable amount of information that you were not asked to provide on our Application for Admission. You only need to be concerned about the consistency of your answers for questions asked on both forms. You can amend your Application for Admission, if necessary, by addressing a letter to me setting forth the details of the omission or misrepresentation and the reason for it.

Representatives from the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar will visit the Chicago area this month (see announcement above) to answer questions concerning the completion of the bar registration application.

First-year students who think they may practice in another state should contact the bar examiners office in that state as soon as possible to determine their registration requirements. Booklets with the addresses and phone numbers of state bar examiners offices are available for you to consult in the Registrar’s office and in my office.

July 2010 Illinois Bar Applications. Applications for the July 2010 bar exam must be submitted by February 1, 2010. You may file a late application up to May 31, but penalty fees apply. The forms and instructions are available on the bar examiners' web site: http://www.ibaby.org. Please note: Even if you registered with the bar examiners as a first-year student, you must still file a final application. If you have any questions about the application materials, you may call the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar at 217/522-5917.

The law school sends a “Certificate of Dean of Law School Proof of Legal Education” to the Illinois bar examiners for every student who graduates in December or May. Please be sure to file an Application for Graduation so that we will know you plan to graduate in either December or May.

All information you disclose on the bar application should be consistent with answers to questions on your Application for Admission to the law school. Please note, however, that the bar application asks for a considerable amount of information that you were not asked to provide on our Application for Admission. You only need to be concerned about the consistency of your answers for questions asked on both forms. You can amend your Application for Admission, if necessary, by addressing a letter to me setting forth the details of the omission or misrepresentation and the reason for it.

Representatives from the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar will visit the Chicago area this month (see announcement above) to answer questions concerning the bar application process.

Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam (MPRE). The MPRE is required for admission to the bars of most jurisdictions, including Illinois. The exam is administered in March, August, and November each year. You may take the exam after you have completed two-thirds of the credits required for the J.D. degree (at Chicago-Kent, this means you must have completed 58 credits). You may register online by going to http://www.ncbex.org/multistate-tests/mpre. The deadline for applying for the March 6, 2010 exam is January 26 (the late deadline is February 11).

Joke of the Week.
After hearing two eyewitness accounts of the same accident, you begin to wonder about history.


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