Pictured above: Guests at a recent event in Palm Beach, Florida for friends of Ave Maria School of Law.
Dean Cieply April 2017 Video
Hello Friends,
This successful academic year is quickly coming to a close.
I'm extremely proud  of our alumni who sat for the February bar exam. Ave Law ranked one of the top five law schools in the state. This shows how truly valuable Chris Buscaglia, our Director of Bar Prep, and his team, Beth Humann '16 and Sean Blanc '16 are in leading the unique bar prep course curriculum. Also, a well-deserved special thanks to our faculty for providing an outstanding legal education for our students. I would like to welcome Holly Parr '17, who passed the February Bar Exam, to the Bar Preparation Team. 
For those considering starting at Ave Law, we will host two more open houses this season - May 19 and June 16. I welcome you to join the Admissions team and me on campus. Applications are due on July 15 and there are still generous scholarships available. 
I hope you had a blessed Easter and want to thank you for being an important member of our Ave Law community.
Please join me on May 13 for Commencement and I'll see you back here next month.
God Bless. 

Kevin Cieply
President and Dean
For more information on Ave Maria School of Law news and events, visit our website . 
St. Thomas More Trial Competition CHAMPIONS!
Brandy Shafer '17, Brittney Davis '17
Brandy Shafer '17, The Honorable Judge Steele, Brittney Davis '17

Brittney Davis '17, Brandy Shafer '17, The Honorable Judge Steele, Michelle Hurvitz '17, Charles Demchak '17

F ollowing preliminary rounds at the Collier County Courthouse, the Championship round of the St. Thomas More Trial Competition was held a few weeks ago in the Ave Maria School of Law Moot Courtroom, presided over by The Honorable John E. Steele, U.S. District Judge (MD FL), and scored by Ave Law faculty (Professors Daniels, Miller, and Bonner). The trial was of a criminal case on charges of possession with intent to distribute heroin, and included a psychiatric defense.
WINNING TRIAL TEAM: Brandy Shafer '17 and Brittney Davis '17
FINALISTS: Michelle Hurvitz '17 and Charles Demchak '17
BEST ORALIST: Brittney Davis

Congratulations to each of them, and to all who competed in this year's internal trial competition. I would like to extend a sincere thanks to the Ave Law personnel who worked to make the competition a success, and especially to Professor Bonner, Moot Court Faculty Advisor and Aimee Schnecker '17, Moot Court Board Vice-President for Internal Competitions, who managed the competition again this year.

th Annual St. Thomas More Oral Advocacy Competition
The Honorable Sheri Polster Chappell, Christopher Fiore '19, Katherine Cook '19, Meredith Lunde '19, Eve Kosciuszko '16, The Honorable Mac R. McCoy, and The Honorable Douglas N. Frazier.
Congratulations to all of the finalists from the Seventeenth Annual Saint Thomas More First-Year Oral Advocacy Competition: 
Christopher Fiore 
Meredith Lunde 
Katherine Cook 
Eve Kosciuszko
The final round took place on Friday, April 21.  Congratulations to Eve Kosciuszko who was announced the winner!
A special thank you to the Members of the Bench for joining us: The Honorable Sheri Polster Chappell, The Honorable Douglas N. Frazier, and The Honorable Mac R. McCoy.

In the Spotlight
This month we caught up with our Director of Bar Preparation, Christopher Buscaglia. He's been a game-changer for Ave Law and is leading quite an important program at the law school.
Q: Do you have a specific game plan you suggest to students studying for the bar exam?
A: Although every student is different and has different study habits, experience suggests to me that every student must establish a study routine. This requires that each student recognize the importance of every study day between the end of their final exams for the semester and the first day of the bar exam. Each day is precious. If one is wasted, that time cannot be retrieved. Every day must be planned in advance. There are at least a couple ways to accomplish this. First, the bar companies have a detailed syllabus that guides students in establishing a study routine. Second, here at Ave Law we have a Supplemental Bar Prep Program that runs in parallel to the commercial bar prep programs. This Program is intended to supplement and enhance the commercial programs by directing students' efforts toward the most highly tested subjects/areas on the bar exam. Our Supplemental Program also has a detailed syllabus that further directs students in establishing an efficient study routine.
Q: It's been said that you have patience and a special dedication to tutoring students one-on-one. What made you decide to take this path in your career and what is one of the favorite aspects of your job?
A: Our Supplemental Bar Prep Program also includes individual tutoring of students. Many students are hesitant to discuss specific issues in a group setting.  Some students may be having difficulty in a particular area that is not addressed by the commercial bar companies or by our Supplemental Program. These students benefit from one-on-one instruction.  Now that we have hired an Assistant Director of Bar Preparation in the person of Holly Paar, we have effectively doubled our tutoring resources. Consequently, any student requested tutoring will receive tutoring.
Q: What is the best piece of advice you would give to students preparing for the bar?
A: If I had to give one piece of advice to a student preparing for the bar exam it would be this: before you walk into that room to take the bar exam, make sure that you did everything humanly possible to prepare yourself for the exam. You never want to say these words: "If only I had studied harder...."  

Alan Gassman to lead Professional Acceleration Workshop
for Ave Law on August 25
Alan Gassman, a nationally respected  leader in the asset protection field has graciously offered to present this Professional Acceleration Workshop to our law students, alumni and experienced professionals.  This CLE approved interactive workshop that will cover personal goal setting, how to handle practical challenges and obstacles, strategies
for business and personal relationships, and client interaction techniques commonly used by the most successful professionals. The workshop will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on August 25. For more information on registration please contact:  Amy Howarth, Assistant Director  of Alumni Affairs and Outreach, Ave Maria School of Law, (239) 687-5355 or e mail her at  alumniaffairs@avemarialaw.edu . Click here for a flyer on the program.

Class of 2017 Commencement on May 13

Ave Maria School of Law's annual Commencement Exercises will be held on Saturday, May 13, 2017, at 1:00 p.m. at Artis-Naples. We are pleased to welcome Reverend Mitch Pacwa, SJ, President and Founder of Ignatius Productions and EWTN personality, as our Commencement speaker.  We will also celebrate a  Baccalaureate Mass on Friday, May 12, at 6:00 p.m. at St. Agnes Catholic Church.  The Very Reverend Robert Kantor, Pastor of St. Agnes Catholic Church, will celebrate Mass. An alumni reception is also planned at the Law School immediately following Mass. Congratulations to the Class of 2017!  We look forward to celebrating this momentous occasion with you and your families.


The International Law Journal (ILJ) hosted a banquet this month and they honored Judge Fred Seraphim, a district court judge in Miami Dade country, for his work with sponsoring children's education in Haiti.
This year's ILJ issue contained five articles by authors from five different regions (American, Brazilian, French, Italian and African) on human rights related topics. They also published one student note by Mr. Michael Solomatin on cultural property in the Syrian War.  You can find the issue here .

Ave Law Class of 2008 Featured Speaker
Ave Maria School of Law alumna Christina Marie Martin, Class of 2008, was a featured speaker in March at Ave Law events in Jupiter and Palm Beach, Florida.  Christina addressed a gathering of friends of the law school from the Boca Raton, Jupiter and Palm Beach Florida communities. Christina spoke about the excellent legal training she received and her work as a Staff Attorney at Pacific Legal Foundation Atlantic Center. Pacific Legal Foundation is a nonprofit, public interest organization that represents clients without charge. Christina litigates cases in federal and state court to protect constitutional rights, including property rights, and free speech. We are very grateful to   Christina and to  Mr. and Mrs. James A. Patterson  of  Palm Beach  and to  Dr. and Mrs. Walter Knysz, Hobe Sound for hosting the events. Please refer to the masthead photo to see a group of event guests.   

It's that time of year again and we're offering a variety of courses for our existing and visiting students.
Ave Law Professor Ligia Castaldi's  OpED
Ave Law Professor Ligia Castaldi's OpED: " Abortion's legality remains in play"  featured in Our Sunday Visitor, a respected national Catholic publication.
I encourage you to read and share the excellent OpEd piece by Ave Law's Professor Ligia Castaldi's in Our Sunday Visitor, a respected national Catholic publication. As Professor Castaldi writes: "The confirmation of Justice Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court raised speculation about whether it will lead to the reversal of a federal right to abortion. The answer is still unclear, but in any case, it is important to remember that such a reversal wouldn't outlaw abortions - it would return the issue to the states, where it belongs." Here is the link to Dr. Castaldi's piece which is currently online and will appear in print in the next issue of the magazine.

In the News
I am pleased to announce that Amy Howarth has been promoted to Assistant Director for Alumni Affairs. In this role, Amy will assist with the coordination and administration of Alumni Affairs, and she will continue outreach to alumni and students for career and alumni events, counseling, and networking.
Please join me in congratulating Amy on her new role and recognizing her outstanding work on behalf of Career Services, Alumni Affairs, and Ave Maria School of Law.

Professor Maureen Milliron recently spoke at the  annual meeting of the Paralegal Association of Florida Southwest Chapter. Janet Poklemba is the president of this chapter. Professor Milliron spoke on the topic of plain English and clarity in legal writing.
In Memoriam
Kate O'Beirne, National Review Editor, Columnist and former Ave Law Board of Governors member, dies at 67.
It is with great sadness that we mourn the passing of Kate O'Beirne, a former Ave Maria School of Law Board member who will be remembered for her many contributions to our school, especially during our early years. She was the National Review's Washington editor and served as president of the National Review Institute. She was one of "the most beloved people of Washington, D.C." noted Ramesh Ponnuru of the National Review. "She brought a witty and well-informed conservatism to a national television audience as well through weekly appearances on CNN's marquee political talk show "Capital Gang." Conservatives were outnumbered there as on cable news generally at that time, but it never seemed that way as long as she was on."  We extend our sincere sympathy and prayers to her family. May her soul and the soul of all the faithful departed rest in peace.

LSAT Prep  Kicks Off this Weekend
We are thrilled to welcome Brandon Cohen, owner of State of Mind Test Prep, back to our campus this weekend to host his second LSAT Prep Course on our Naples Campus. For further information about this course or potential future dates, please contact our Admissions Department at    info@avemarialaw.edu  or call (239) 687-5420.
Do you know anyone considering law school? Our Open House events hosted by the Admissions office have been in full swing this season. We invite all those interested in visiting our Southwest Florida campus, so they may discover why Ave Maria School of Law is the best law school choice for them. We have two more open houses remaining on May 19 and June 16.
For further information, our Admissions Department can be reached at  info@avemarialaw.edu   or call (239) 687-5420.

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Ave Maria School of Law was founded in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 1999, and in 2009 relocated to Naples, Florida. It is licensed by the Florida Commission for Independent Education, License Number 4007, and is fully accredited by the American Bar Association. A copy of the official registration and financial information may be obtained from the division of consumer services by calling toll-free within the state. Registration does not imply endorsement, approval, or recommendation by the state. http://www.freshfromflorida.com/divisions-offices/consumer-services 1-800-435-7352.

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