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Meet the Class of 2023

WVU Law Class of 2023

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Amidst the global pandemic, the Class of 2023 at WVU Law has begun its legal education with a combination of online and in-person courses.

There are 111 students in the 1L class with a median entering GPA of 3.45 and a median LSAT score of 154, which is the same as last year. Approximately 38% of the class is from out-of-state.

Women make up 43% of the class. Eight percent of the 1Ls self-identify as a minority. The average age is 24, with an age range of 21 to 38. Almost 27% of the class is a first-generation college student.

Students in the Class of 2023 graduated from 41 colleges and universities. Some of the out-of-state schools represented are Baylor, Brown, Colorado State, George Mason, James Madison, Miami University of Ohio, Penn State, Temple, Texas A&M and the University of Virginia.

WVU Law clinic client freed after 14 years in prison

WVU Law WV Innocence Project Andrew George, Jason Lively, Melissa Giggenbach

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Charles Jason Lively is a free man today after spending 14 years in prison for a crime he did not commit.

Lively, a client of the West Virginia Innocence Project Law Clinic at the West Virginia University College of Law, was granted exoneration on September 23 by Judge William Sadler in the Mercer County Circuit Court. Staff and students in the law clinic worked on Lively’s case with attorneys from Baker Botts L.L.P.

In 2006, Lively was found guilty of first-degree murder and arson following the death in 2005 of Dr. Ebb K. “Doc” Whitley in Iaeger, West Virginia. He was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. 

Fitzsimmons Law Firm establishes litigation and advocacy center at WVU Law

WVU Law $1.25 million gift from Fitzsimmons Law Firm

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The newly-established Fitzsimmons Center for Litigation and Advocacy at the West Virginia University College of Law will provide additional opportunities for students to enhance essential lawyering skills—including understanding and analyzing the applicable substantive and procedural law while translating that knowledge into effective written and oral advocacy during the litigation process.

The Fitzsimmons Law Firm announced the Fitzsimmons Foundation pledged a gift of $1.25 million to establish the Center, which will have the goal to train law students to become effective legal advocates by enhancing and expanding the litigation and advocacy curriculum at the College.

WVU Law $1.25 million gift from Fitzsimmons Law Firm

McConlogue joins WVU College of Law faculty

WVU Law Professor Nicole McConlogue

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Nicole McConlogue has joined the faculty at the West Virginia University College of Law as an associate professor and clinic director.

McConlogue will teach in WVU Law’s Litigation and Advocacy (General Practice) Law Clinic. Under supervision, students in the clinic provide free legal services in family law, social security and other public benefits, property issues, consumer debt relief and bankruptcy, among others. As a result, they often appear in West Virginia’s state and federal courts.

“We are thrilled to have Nicole at WVU Law as part of our faculty,” said John Taylor, interim dean of the College of Law. “She has terrific experience as a public interest attorney and a clinical teacher, along with administrative experience that will serve her well in the role of clinic director. We are confident she will carry on our strong clinical tradition and that her teaching and scholarship will benefit both our students and the people of West Virginia.”

McConlogue's scholarship interests include consumer protection, competition law, poverty law and technological surveillance of the poor. She serves as a board member for the Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition and she is a longtime volunteer for Alpha Gamma Delta Women's Fraternity.

Professor Van Nostrand named to new energy advisory council

WVU Law Professor Jamie Van Nostrand

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Professor James Van Nostrand, director of the Center for Energy and Sustainable Development at the West Virginia University College of Law, has been named to the advisory council of the new Ohio River Valley Institute.

Launched in August 2020, the Ohio River Valley Institute is focused on creating jobs by researching and promoting a clean energy economy in the Appalachian regions of Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Kentucky.

Van Nostrand has an extensive background in clean energy issues.

“I am pleased to have the opportunity to serve on the Advisory Council of the Ohio River Valley Institute,” he said. “The goals of the Institute — to promote development of a clean energy economy and a more sustainable path for the region — are very compatible with the mission of the Center for Energy and Sustainable Development. I hope to be able to contribute to the impact of the Institute in shaping the future of the greater Ohio River Valley.”

Robinson to deliver Ihlenfeld Lecture on Constitution Day September 17

WVU Law Constitution Day 2020 Kimberly Jenkins Robinson

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Education law expert Kimberly Jenkins Robinson will address the right to education at West Virginia University’s annual observance of Constitution Day on September 17 at noon.

Robinson’s lecture, "A Federal Right to Education: Foundational Questions for the Future of Our Nation," will be webcast for the WVU community and general public.

Robinson teaches at the University of Virginia, where she is the Merrill Professor of Law, a professor of Education in the Curry School of Education, and professor of Law, Education and Public Policy in the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy.

In 2019, New York University Press published Robinson’s book, “A Federal Right to Education: Fundamental Questions for Our Democracy,” in which leading constitutional and education law scholars consider how the United States can provide equal educational opportunity for its children.

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