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WVU Law named a top school for public service

WVU Law Top Public Service School 2021-22 badge

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The West Virginia University College of Law is one of the best schools in the country for students interested in public service, according to preLaw Magazine.

The national magazine places WVU Law at no. 11 for public interest law and no. 23 for federal clerkships.

“Public service is a cornerstone of WVU’s land-grant mission and our legal program,” said Amelia Rinehart, dean of the College of Law. “It’s exceptionally rewarding to be recognized at the highest levels for providing students with fulfilling opportunities in public service.”

The preLaw ranking is based on graduate employment rate, courses, clinics, externships, faculty, student groups, and student debt. The magazine analyzed data from the American Bar Association, U.S. News & World Report and the individual law schools.

WVU Law center finds Biden, Manchin energy plans will benefit West Virginia

WVU Law wind turbines

MORGANTOWN, W. Va.— Analysis from the Center for Energy and Sustainable Development  at the West Virginia University College of Law has determined that energy infrastructure incentives proposed in complementary plans from President Joe Biden and U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) will benefit the Mountain State in job creation, energy costs and emissions reduction.

“West Virginia’s Energy Future: Built Back Better,” an update to a report released last year, illustrates how a dramatic increase in renewable energy production over the next decade could be feasible, notwithstanding electric utilities’ current dependence on coal.

“Built Back Better” finds the rapid expansion of renewable energy enabled by the energy infrastructure incentives in the American Jobs Plan would create 3,508 full-time jobs in West Virginia, while also reducing costs by $855 million through 2040. It would also allow electric utilities to achieve 79.4% emission-free electricity generation in 2030.

“Last year we showed how a major increase of wind and solar could be cost-effective even without any policy changes,” said  James Van Nostrand, director of the Center for Energy and Sustainable Development. “Now we’re showing how the Biden and Manchin plans would enable a swifter buildout of renewable energy while simultaneously creating thousands of jobs and significantly reducing energy costs in our state.”

WVU Law veterans clinic opens Charleston office

WVU Law Veterans Advocacy Clinic The Equities Hosue

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia’s nearly 170,000 veterans, many with unique legal needs related to their service or return to civilian life, will benefit from the regional office West Virginia University’s Veterans Advocacy Law Clinic has opened in The Equities House in Charleston.

“The state’s veterans who need legal assistance have a new resource in the capital,” said Amelia Rinehart, dean of the WVU College of Law. “This additional clinical law office will allow us to better serve our veterans in the central and southern part of the state.”

Under faculty supervision, law students in the clinic represent West Virginia veterans for free in litigation before administrative agencies and courts on benefits, discharge upgrades, employment claims and other civil matters. The clinic also works with U.S. Attorneys’ offices in the state to provide representation for veterans with petty offenses.

Attorney Jed Nolan is the program director of the Veterans Advocacy Law Clinic. He will split his time between the Charleston office and the main clinic at the WVU College of Law in Morgantown. Student attorneys in the clinic will continue to work out of the College of Law and travel to Charleston as needed.

1L Novak wins BLSA award in honor of Justice Cleckley

WVU Law student Kinsey Novak

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Incoming student Kinsey Novak is the recipient of a $1500 book stipend from the Black Law Students Association at the West Virginia University College of Law.

Applicants for the stipend submitted an essay discussing a court opinion written by the late Franklin D. Cleckley, the first African-American justice on the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia. 

Cleckley, a longtime WVU law professor, served on the state’s Supreme Court from 1994 to 1996 and authored more than 100 majority opinions. He passed away in August 2017.

Novak, who begins her 1L year at WVU Law this month, won for her essay examining Cleckley’s 1996 decision in State ex rel. Suriano v. Gaughan (198 W. Va. 339, 480 S.E.2d 548).

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