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Press Release

NIU Law Class of 2017 Takes Big First Step
During Orientation Week

August 29, 2014

DeKalb, Ill.--The Northern Illinois University College of Law introduced the Class of 2017 to the next major step in their professional lives - the study of law. The new class gathered in Swen Parson Hall on Monday, August 11 to begin a week of orientation. The new class of 85 students arrived with a wealth of diverse perspectives and experiences, promising to be one of the most unique classes the College of Law has seen.

“Orientation is always a favorite time of year for me as we welcome our new class to the NIU Law community and family,” said NIU Law Dean Jennifer Rosato Perea. “We want the students to understand -- from the beginning of law school -- the responsibilities they will be taking on as part of a most venerable profession with aspirational values such as civility, diversity, and access to justice.”

Over the course of a busy week, the students were introduced to numerous important concepts and tools that will be necessary for their success over the next three years and throughout their professional and personal lives. One of the most important components of the week occurred on Wednesday afternoon when the students took part in a program on professionalism hosted by the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism.

Justice Ann B. Jorgenson of the Second District of Illinois Appellate Court addressed the students on the notion of their importance to society as future lawyers and then administered the “Pledge of Professionalism,” in which the students commit themselves to upholding the highest standards and ideals of the legal profession. Students then took part in small group meetings, facilitated by attorneys and judges, discussing how best to handle hypothetical situations that presented a number of difficult professionalism issues.

Students also took part in a mock class and practice exam, financial planning workshop, and networking opportunities. Many of the students attended a networking reception held at the Zeke Giorgi Legal Clinic in Rockford, where they learned about the College of Law’s clinical and externship offerings from clinical faculty and spoke with area alumni, judges, and elected officials about what to expect from their law school experience.

With a fast-paced and exciting week of orientation over with, the students eagerly prepared to embark on the next step in their journey: the first week of law school classes. The NIU Law faculty and staff worked to equip them for the task by giving them an introduction and foundation for what is ahead. The particular path is up to each student, but the prospects for the class of 2017 look very promising.

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For more information, contact:
Melody Mitchell
Alumni Events & Public Relations
(815) 753-9655 or

mmitchell@niu.edu

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