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Clinic helps veteran with discharge upgrade

WVU Law Veterans Clinic client Jerry Severt and family

MORGANTOWN, W. Va. ­- The Veterans Advocacy Law Clinic at the WVU Law recently secured a discharge upgrade for an Army veteran that qualifies him for benefits.

Clinic client Jerry Severt, a native of McDowell County, West Virginia, was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1968. Traumatized by the death of his seven-year-old brother in 1970, Severt was unfavorably discharged.

From 2010 to 2013, Severt made three requests for a discharge upgrade to the Army Board for Correction of Military Records. His requests were denied and his case was administratively closed.

In 2017, the Veterans Advocacy Law Clinic took Severt’s case. In refiling his claim, law students in the clinic argued that Severt’s discharge was unfair based on the modern understanding of the effects of traumatic events on a person’s mental health. 

WVU Law ranked 100 by U.S. News & World Report

WVU Law Dean Gregory Bowman

MORGANTOWN, W. Va. — WVU Law’s 2020 U.S. News & World Report rank is 100. 

The magazine also ranks three WVU Law programs in the top 100 law specialties: Environmental Law (74), Health Care Law (76) and Tax Law (96).

“We are very happy to be in the top 100 law schools,” said Gregory Bowman, dean of the College of Law. “The top 100 is a highly competitive group of schools, and this reflects a national recognition of our excellence. We will continue to work every day to improve our excellent programs and to raise our national reputation even further.”

To compile its 2020 law school rankings, U.S. News looked at information from 192 ABA-approved schools in areas such as peer assessment, LSAT scores, employment rate, bar passage rate and institutional resources. 

March 21 Auction and Dinner Supports PIA Fellowships

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA —The annual Public Interest Advocates Auction and Dinner will be held on March 21 at WVU Law. The public is invited to attend.

This year’s 1950s-themed event, “Hopelessly Devoted to Public Service,” begins at 5:30 p.m. with a buffet dinner in the WVU Law lobby. Tickets for the dinner can be purchased for $10 at the door, and children under 10 eat for free.

The auction will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the College’s Event Hall. Admission to the auction is free. Live and silent auction items will be up for bid, and there will also be raffle items and door prizes.

PIA Auction items include weekend getaways, Pittsburgh Steelers and Pirates tickets, golf packages, signed WVU sports memorabilia, tickets to concerts and theater performances, a Bourbon tasting, electronics and homemade goods. Auctioneering services will be provided by Jared Staggs.

Writing Center First to Earn Tutor Training Certification

WVU Law - Writing Center Director Melanie Stimeling

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The WVU Law Writing Center recently became the first program affiliated with a law school to earn International Tutor Training Program Certification from the College Reading and Learning Association.

Developed by Melanie Stimeling, director of the Writing Center, the tutor training program supports the professional development of Peer Writing Consultants, who are the upper-level law students who tutor writing in the Center.

The College Reading and Learning Association reviewed WVU Law’s training program as “excellent,” citing its clear objectives, structure and outcomes for assessment. The CRLA also highlighted the Writing Center’s strong hiring process for its Peer Writing Consultants and its support of their professional development through assessment, observation, and feedback opportunities.

“This certification verifies the professional standards set in the Writing Center, and it recognizes the Center’s work and commitment to student success,” said Stimeling. “With this certification, the Writing Center can now certify Peer Writing Consultants who meet the CRLA-approved requirements. The training program emphasizes a learner-centered, collaborative approach to writing consultations and educates our Peer Writing Consultants on best practices used in tutoring writers.”

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