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June 18, 2014 — The University of Wyoming has initiated a survey of perspectives of its College of Law on the part of its numerous stakeholders.
The survey will include input from the College of Law faculty and students, the college’s advisory board, the law school liaison committee of the Wyoming State Bar, district court and other judges, leading general law practitioners, criminal prosecuting and defense attorneys, and mineral and agricultural law practitioners in Wyoming. The effort will be undertaken by Ryan Lance, who received both his undergraduate and law degrees from UW, with the firm of Crowell & Moring in Cheyenne.
“We’re looking for input and counsel regarding the current framework for legal education employed by the College of Law, along with thoughts on what may be working well and how to enhance and improve that framework, if necessary,” says Lance, who served as a state agency director under Gov. Matt Mead and was deputy chief of staff under former Gov. Dave Freudenthal. “The goal will be to develop a candid appraisal of the College of Law, its relationship with the practicing bar in Wyoming, its ability to deliver a well-rounded legal education, and potential areas of excellence and distinction that might be pursued at the college.”
UW President Dick McGinity says the survey is in line with his three guiding objectives for the university, including “increasing statewide engagement to further the well-being of citizens across the state in defined and measurable ways.”
“External input and connections are vital for the university to ascertain what it is doing well and what it needs to do better,” McGinity says. “This survey of College of Law stakeholders is a kind of effort we may employ for other units of the university as well.”
Administrators with the university and the College of Law will be involved throughout the process. Lance says the effort will include evaluation of areas identified by the college as potential areas of distinction -- particularly those identified as part of the college’s recent self-study, conducted as part of its American Bar Association accreditation process. Attention also will be given to challenges identified through the accreditation process, in which the college still is engaged.
“The college welcomes this opportunity to receive valuable input from key stakeholders around the state and beyond,” says Jacquelyn Bridgeman, interim College of Law dean. “It will allow us to make sure our academic plan and strategies align with the needs and expectations of the people we serve.”
The findings of the review also will be presented to the Legislature’s Joint Judiciary Committee in September. A preliminary report is expected to be presented to the committee at its interim meeting in July.