Law students sworn-in by Kansas supreme court justice

Victoria Garcia

Twenty-five Washburn Law Clinic students were sworn in on Aug. 23 by Kansas Supreme Court Justice Lee A. Johnson. The afternoon event, which took place in the law school’s Robinson Courtroom, grants the students special permission from the Kansas Supreme Court to practice law and represent clients in court.

A graduate of Washburn University, Johnson believes the experience is one of “great opportunity and responsibility” as well as one that will greatly benefit the community. While learning to become effective advocates for their clients, clinic interns will also be providing free legal services to members of the community who cannot afford to hire private attorneys.

“We will be supervised individually by professors as we practice under their license,” said Stephen Allred, a third year law student.

Allred, who plans to graduate in May and work in criminal law, appreciates the fact that the Washburn Law Clinic exposes students to the real world of law. A graduate of Weber State University in Ogden, Utah, Allred chose to attend Washburn University School of Law specifically for its nationally known law clinic.

“The opportunity to be responsible for a case is a tremendously great experience,” said Allred.

In 1970, the Washburn Law Clinic was one of the nation’s first in-house law school clinics. Today the clinic is on the cutting edge of legal education.

The welcoming, friendly nature of the law school is what attracted third year law student Claire Terrebonne. After graduating from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., Terrebonne looked into a variety of law schools.

“I was impressed with the fact that they cared about more than what I looked like on paper,” said Terrebonne. “The admissions department was so personable, they sat down with me one on one.”

Terrebonne, who plans to graduate in May and focus on civil litigation law, believes the unique experience she and her fellow students will gain throughout the clinic will be an asset to law firms that seek to hire them.

“With some new lawyers requiring training when they are fresh on the job, Washburn Law Clinic students will already have that previous know-how,” said Terrebonne.

During his address to the students, Johnson also stressed the importance of professionalism and giving back to the law profession.

“My hope is that students get the personal satisfaction that I myself got out of the profession,” said Johnson.