Accepted Applicants Get a Taste of the First Year Experience
Web Editor - Published: April 20, 2011
“Today is really designed to be all about the first year experience,” said Assistant Dean for Admissions Barbara Ayars as she welcomed an audience of accepted applicants in the Ruby R. Vale Moot Courtroom on Saturday, April 16th to Accepted Applicants Day on the Delaware campus.

Vice Dean J. Patrick Kelly and outgoing Student Bar Association President Damiano del Pino also welcomed the applicants. Vice Dean Kelly emphasized the wide range of opportunities for practical experience that accompany a Widener Law education while del Pino praised the faculty, saying, “The professors here are dedicated to seeing you succeed.”

On the Harrisburg campus, accepted applicants braved terrible rainstorms to tour campus and hear from a panel of 6 alumni - a large firm litigator, a solo practitioner, a judicial clerk, a lobbyist, a CEO, and a government lawyer – who graduated between 2005 and 2009 and are all doing very different things with their legal educations.

Accepted Applicants Day offered potential Widener Law students a chance to meet with representatives from the Registrar, Career Development, Financial Aid, Clinical Programs, International Programs, Housing, Institutes, the Public Interest Resource Center, and a variety of student organizations.

In Delaware, the applicants were also treated to a simulated Torts class with Professor John Culhane and had the opportunity to hear from a panel of current students about the law school experience.

“Things that seem obvious turn out to really not be so obvious once you get to law school,” said Professor Culhane as he offered students a glimpse at what a law school Torts class might be like.

Culhane challenged the audience to engage with the material by asking questions and then used those answers to illuminate important principles of tort law such as compensatory and punitive damages and intentional infliction of emotional distress. He then discussed the recent Supreme Court ruling in Snyder v. Westboro Baptist Church to tie the discussion into a current case.

Culhane concluded his remarks with some general advice about law school, encouraging those in attendance to keep a sense of humor and “maintain relationships with people outside of law school because they can give you a different perspective.”

Later in the day, the accepted applicants had the chance to hear about the law school experience from one of two panels of current students. Students Eric Laury, Ashley Talley, Celisse Williams, Zachary Zahner, and Staci Pesin spoke to those interested in the 3-year program (Regular Division) while those interested in the 4-year program (Extended Division) heard from Jana DiCosmo, Erie Coney Jr., and Janine Mosley.

The Harrisburg program concluded with a brunch where the applicants had the opportunity to speak with faculty members and current students. Newly elected Student Bar Association President Nicole Radziewicz spoke about the exciting things planned for the next academic year.

Widener Law thanks all of the accepted applicants who visited both campuses and hopes to see everyone back as students in the fall!