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Dean's Message

Dean's Message

People often joke that the best three reasons to be an academic are June, July, and August. But in reality summer is a busy time for both faculty and students. For faculty, this time period offers an opportunity to pursue research, revise existing courses, and develop new ones. For students, summer brings both summer semester and summer associate opportunities. And for the class of 2013, summer brings the joys of studying for the bar exam. Of course, most members of the class of 2013 had an entire weekend off before they had to start studying for the bar!

This past April more than 725 alumni and friends from across the country attended anniversary milestone reunions and other Spring Alumni Weekend (SAW) events. I’d like to give special recognition to the class of ’63. More than 50% of this class attended the reunion dinner, and the class raised an incredible $3.4 million as its 50-year reunion class gift. Our deepest thanks to the class of ’63 and all who contributed to the Law School. Photos from SAW have been posted to e>community.

This spring we also received another generous gift from the Robina Foundation of nearly $9 million. James H. Binger (’41) created the Robina Foundation shortly before his death in 2004. This most recent gift will help establish a Law School Center for New Americans. The Center will be the first of its kind among law schools and will include a detainee rights clinic, a federal litigation clinic, and an education and outreach program. A portion of the gift will also provide additional funding to the Robina Institute of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice to expand research and advocacy on sentencing law reforms. For more information see www.law.umn.edu/news/robina-foundation-pledges-9-million-to-law-school-5-30-2013.html.

With approximately $60 million now raised, we are closing in on our Generations campaign goal of $70 million. As we work toward finishing the campaign, we are focused on increasing scholarship opportunities for our students. I hope you will consider adding to the momentum generated by the class of ’63 and the Robina Foundation by making a gift before the end of the fiscal year on June 30.

Thank you and best wishes for an enjoyable summer.

David Wippman
Dean and William S. Pattee Professor of Law