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LLI Staff to Meet in Columbus for 2015 Leadership Training

By Heather Creed on June 5, 2015 - 12:47pm
The 2015 LLI Summer Institutes are fast approaching, but before we welcome our 375 new and returning LLI students back to our eight sites around the state, we will welcome our new instructors and staff to the LLI Team.  June 8-10, approximately 65 law student instructors, public educators, and site administrators will convene in Columbus to prepare for the coming summer and academic year.  Held at the Embassy Suites in Dublin, the three days will in effect be a mini-bootcamp for becoming effective teachers.
 
The local Site Administrators and Central Office staff interviewed many candidates in an effort to find the best classroom leaders.  A former teacher, Heather Creed, Executive Director of LLI said, “As part of the interview process, candidates had to deliver a mock lesson as we acted like high school students.  The care the candidates put into thinking through how to break down concepts in a way that would be interesting and engaging to our students tells me we have a great group of instructors.  The training is now our opportunity to give them the vision of what LLI hopes to accomplish, build community among the staff, and equip them for a successful experience in the classroom.”
 
“Our Leadership Training provides a tremendous opportunity for our instructors to grapple with concepts from the curriculum, design lesson plans, and collaborate with peers throughout the state, in an effort to ensure that LLI students are challenged and engaged during the Summer Institute,” said Rachel Wilson, LLI Program Director.  In addition to learning about creating lesson plans, instructors will be taught about assessing students for understanding, classroom management, cultural competency, and best practices for working with minors.
 
LLI instructors and staff are key to the success of the program.  With this training under their belts, they will be prepared to make a meaningful difference in the lives of LLI students.
 

LLI Welcomes Three New Board Members

By Heather Creed on June 5, 2015 - 12:40pm
The LLI Board of Directors is honored with the addition of three outstanding new trustees: Merle F. Wilberding, Judge Michael J. Newman, and Robert J. Weiler, Sr.
 
Mr. Wilberding is a member of the law firm Coolidge Wall Co., LPA.  He has practiced more than 35 years advising clients in all areas of business planning and served as the chair of the firm’s tax department.  He has also served as Chairman and General Counsel for the Greater Dayton Foreign Trade Zone, Inc.  He has authored numerous publications in national law reviews and business media.  Merle has too many professional honors to list but include Ohio Super Lawyers and Best Lawyers in America. He has also been a stalwart volunteer in the Dayton community and beyond, supporting the University of Dayton School of Law, Wright State University, the University of Notre Dame, and the Dayton Opera, to name just a few.
 
Judge Newman serves as Magistrate Judge for the United States District Court in Dayton.   Judge Newman was previously a partner in the Cincinnati office of Dinsmore & Shohl.  There, he chaired the firm’s labor and employment appellate practice group and served on the firm’s diversity committee.  He has been named both an Oho Super Lawyer and one of the Best Lawyers in America in Labor & Employment Law.  He has also taught as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Dayton School of Law.  While he has many more credits, suffice to say that Judge Newman is enthusiastically devoted to improving both his chosen profession and our communities.
 
Robert Weiler is another accomplished lawyer, real estate developer, and committed community supporter/volunteer.  He serves as Chairman of the Board for The Robert Weiler Company, a developer of subdivisions, apartments, offices, and industrial complexes in central Ohio.  Bob is the past president of the Columbus Board of Realtors and served as a director of the National Association of Realtors.  In the community, he has served as president of the Columbus Board of Education, chaired the community campaign for United Way of Central Ohio, and also served as a board member, trustee, or director for many organizations, including Capital University, the Center of Science and Industry, the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission, Pilot Dogs, Inc., and the Columbus Metropolitan YMCA.  He has also served as the founder and president of the board of I Know I Can, a college access program for students in the Columbus City School District.
 

Legal Employers to Provide 10th Grade Summer Internships

By Heather Creed on June 5, 2015 - 12:38pm

The summer internship program is fundamental to LLI’s success because it affords rising sophomores with real experience in the world of law.  The internship lasts four full days and provides students with an introduction to the professional setting.  Additionally, the internship allows the students to interact with lawyers by tackling legal problems and projects and by receiving feedback from supervising lawyers.  The hosts have been instrumental to the success of LLI by helping students improve their reading, writing, oral communication, and analytical skills.

Last year, over 80 different firms, governmental agencies, and organizations throughout Ohio participated in the LLI summer internship program.  Each host provides the students with a “learning by doing” experience for which the students receive a stipend.  LLI has been extremely fortunate to have hosts that are committed to the success of its interns.  In fact, many hosts often agree to have as many as three interns at their offices each summer in order to provide more students with exposure to the legal profession. 

“The natural concerns of inconvenience and distraction  of hosting summer interns always melt away upon meeting eager, intelligent and prepared LLI students.  It’s exciting to have them and to see the potential they have to make the world a better place, and the potential we have to help them along in their journey.  The students inevitably renew our faith in the future of our country and our profession,” said Stuart Cubbon of Cubbon & Associates in Toledo.

A summer internship is the “prize” offered to students who put in the time and effort to complete the eighth grade program.  However, the most important result of the internship program is that it encourages students to believe that, one day, they too can succeed in a  professional environment – most notably, as active and engaged lawyers!

LLI Represented at Collegiate Mock Trial Tournaments

By Heather Creed on June 5, 2015 - 12:37pm
During the weekend of April 17 – 19, 2015, hundreds of undergraduate students from across the country descended upon Cincinnati, with opening statements and witness testimony on their minds.  The American Mock Trial Association (AMTA) National Championship competition was held at the University of Cincinnati, bringing together some of the best undergraduate mock trial teams in the nation to compete – with the goal of fostering the development of undergraduate students in the areas of leadership, public speaking, rhetoric, and persuasion through a legal forum.  
 
In light of the similar ethos to the Law & Leadership Institute, it should not be surprising that an LLI alumnus, a former LLI instructor, and an LLI staff member were all involved in AMTA tournaments leading to the National Championship competition, albeit in different capacities. Imokhai Okolo, a former Akron LLI student, competed as part of Miami University’s Mock Trial team, which earned third place in its division.   “I was definitely introduced to mock trial through LLI and it’s one of my passions,” Okolo said. “Miami University is definitely a premier school for mock trial and it’s been a great experience.”  
 
A former instructor for Cincinnati LLI, Austin LiPuma, now coaches University of Cincinnati’s Mock Trial Team A, which received honorable mention in its division.  LiPuma is passionate about mock trial, and has been involved with it since he competed as an undergraduate himself.  Now a rising third-year law student at University of Cincinnati College of Law, LiPuma coaches to pay it forward – noting that mock trial was such an instrumental part of his decision to pursue law, he wanted to give back to like-minded students:  “I noticed early on in teaching my 12th grade LLI class that my experience coaching mock trial molded my teaching style; and my experience teaching LLI has helped me be a better coach.”  
 
Finally, in addition to her role as Executive Director of LLI, Heather Creed served on the Board of Directors of AMTA for several years and continues to volunteer her time running Regional competitions.  “It was so rewarding to see different parts of the LLI community connect through undergraduate mock trial.  Coaching and serving as a Board member for AMTA has been an important part of my professional life, and I am glad to see it becoming an important part of our graduates’ and instructors’ lives, too,” Creed said.
 
The Law & Leadership Institute continues to host mock trial competitions each year as part of its curriculum, and encourages participation in similar programs, such as the Ohio Center for Law-Related Education’s We the People and Mock Trial competitions.
 

United States District Court Supports LLI

By Heather Creed on June 5, 2015 - 12:35pm
by Hon. Michael J. Newman
U.S. Magistrate Judge – Dayton Federal Courthouse
LLI Board Member
 
United States District Judges and Magistrate Judges in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio are proud to support the Law and Leadership Institute and LLI students. 
 
For a number of years, the Court has made a financial contribution to LLI. The Court is proud that its financial support has been used by LLI to create the Holschuh Fellows Program in honor of Judge John D. Holschuh, Sr.  The law student instructors who are designated as Holschuh Fellows embody the leadership, professionalism, and commitment to the rule of law that were so important to Judge Holschuh. 
 
In addition to the Court’s financial support of LLI, individual judges in the three seats of Court (Cincinnati, Columbus, and Dayton) have hosted LLI students in their respective chambers over the summer months.  
 
For the past three years, I have had multiple LLI students spend part of the summer with me.  I have found it is a rewarding experience not only for the students, but for me as well.  The students watch court proceedings and, when a hearing is over, we spend time talking about what they have witnessed and why I ruled as I did.  The students and I also spend significant time discussing the importance of higher education and the need to attend college or other training in the field of their choosing.  We speak about mentoring and how to find a trusted mentor.  I offer to help the students, even after they finish LLI and graduate from high school.
 
We also talk about our backgrounds and life experiences.  I tell them why I was drawn to the law, and why I wanted to become a judge.  We discuss the important of fairness and justice, and how hard lawyers and judges work every day to be fair and just.
 
Not all LLI students will attend law school, of course, but some will.  Nonetheless, in my view, all LLI students benefit from the time they spend in our Court watching hearings and trials, meeting and talking with judges, and learning about the process of deciding civil and criminal cases.
 
I am honored both to play a small role in the success of the LLI students from Dayton and to serve on LLI’s board of directors.  I am proud that our Court wants all LLI students to flourish, and that the judges here work to ensure each student’s individual success. 
 

LLI Seniors College Bound!

By Heather Creed on June 5, 2015 - 12:34pm
All 23 Columbus and Dayton LLI graduating seniors will attend college this fall.  Columbus and Dayton are the first two sites to report on college plans, and their students’ achievements reflect both the dedication of these students and the rigor of LLI’s program. 
 
LLI seniors are choosing a wide range of universities.  The out-of-state schools that will have LLI graduates next fall include Dartmouth College, Emory University, George Washington University, Alabama A & M University, Alabama State University, North Carolina A & T State University, and Boston College, based on the Columbus and Dayton reports as well as partial reports from Cincinnati and Cleveland.
 
Within Ohio, seniors will attend The Ohio State University, University of Cincinnati, Capital University, University of Dayton, Ohio University, Miami University, Kent State University, Ohio Wesleyan University, and Bowling Green State University, among others.  Some of these LLI seniors have secured full scholarships.
 
Subsequent newsletters will report on college plans for LLI seniors at other sites.  Typically, over 90% of LLI seniors attend college – a rate that exceeds, in fact usually vastly exceeds, the college matriculation rates for the high schools attended by LLI students. 
 
 
 

LLI Featured in LEAD Magazine

By Heather Creed on April 15, 2015 - 10:50am

LLI was recently featured in Cincinnati's LEAD Magazine. To view the article, click here.

LLI Students Featured on Court News Ohio

By Heather Creed on January 28, 2015 - 2:06pm

Students from LLI's Cincinnati and Dayton sites who recently competed in the Ohio Center for Law-Related Education's (OCLRE) We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution state competition were recently featured in a news story by Court News Ohio, a service of the Supreme Court of Ohio and Ohio Government Telecommunications. The students competed in We the People on January 23 at the Ohio Statehouse. To view the story and an accompanying video, click here.

Congratulations to everyone who competed!

The Columbus Bar Foundation Creates Challenge Grant & Columbus Lawyers Are Answering

By Heather Creed on December 9, 2014 - 3:17pm
The Columbus Bar Foundation will match each gift this winter to the Law and Leadership Institute -- dollar for dollar -- up to $20,000.  Several groups of Columbus attorneys already have accepted the Foundation’s challenge.  Lawyers at Vorys Sater Seymour and Pease; Kegler Brown & Ritter; Bricker & Eckler; and Frost Brown Todd were the first to commit and have raised sufficient combined donations to support seven LLI students for a year of academic enrichment studies, thanks to the match.  
 
Carl Smallwood at Vorys (the first President of LLI) said, “It is easy to feel good about giving to a program for high school kids from Columbus’ under-served communities when 100 percent of those completing the four-year program in 2013 and 2014 went to college.  LLI is a bright spot in the sad story of talented young people in these neighborhoods who too often drop out or turn off during high school.”
 
Bricker & Eckler’s Sally Bloomfield, a co-chair of LLI’s Columbus Advisory Committee, noted that the Bricker & Eckler letter requested colleagues to consider a gift of $100.  “Some gave more, but we wanted people to donate an amount that would work for them each year so that attorneys would support LLI in an ongoing basis.” 
 
All of these firms, as well as seven other law firms in Columbus and the Office of the Ohio Attorney General, host LLI interns for four days during the summer between their ninth and tenth grades.  The internships reinforce the students’ career dreams and understanding of what it means to be a professional.  In addition, LLI students spend about 700 hours studying law, writing, analysis, professionalism, ACT test performance, and college opportunities during classes held during the summer and throughout the academic year.
 
Fundraising initiatives are underway as well in the five other Ohio city bars that sponsor the tuition-free LLI programs at the law schools in those cities.  LLI also benefits from major gifts from the Ohio State Bar Foundation and the Law School Admissions Council.  The Supreme Court of Ohio and both U.S. District Courts in Ohio also generously support LLI.
 
Former Procter & Gamble Chief Legal Officer Steve Jemison serves as CEO/President of LLI statewide  declining any compensation. Jemison says, “This is the best way I know for those of us in the legal profession to achieve the change we are seeking.  We’re glad that so many lawyers have embraced this program and helped in any way that they can. Through LLI we can change the profession and the leadership of our community by changing lives, one kid at a time.”
 

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