Tuesday August 5, 2008

Law School Listed Among Most Friendly for Mormons

Web site for Mormon lawyers lists UD along with Harvard University, Columbia University and New York University as one of 11 law schools most friendly to Mormons.

Mormonlawyers.com lists the University of Dayton School of Law among the 11 most Mormon-friendly law schools.

The rankings are based on the number of Mormon law students (UDSL has six), the cost- of-living, tuition, distance to the nearest Mormon temple (68 miles) and prestige.

"I'm very excited to see UDSL highlighted as a great place for Mormons to study law," said Clint Dunaway, a first-year UD law student and author of the site who earned his undergraduate degree at Brigham Young University. "Because of the two-year program, the beautiful campus, low cost-of-living, and caring professors, I whole-heartedly agree that UDSL is a fantastic law school and that it is a great place for everyone."

Dunaway created the ranking as an outgrowth of the work he did to choose a school for himself, according to Mormon Times.

"When I was researching different law schools, this information wasn't in any one place," he said.

He gave his own school an "honorable mention" because of its accelerated option, which allows students to finish in two years rather than three, according to Mormon Times.

"I think that is a big draw to a lot of other LDS kids that may have families and kids," Dunaway said.

The law schools at Harvard University, Columbia University and New York University also are on the list. UD is one of three Catholic law schools listed; Georgetown University and Creighton University are the others.

The complete list and survey methodology can be found at http://www.mormonlawyers.com.

Lori Shaw, UDSL dean of students, attributes the fit to Mormons sharing the same core values of faith, family and community as the UD School of Law.

The UD School of Law’s Lawyer as Problem Solver program emphasizes service and applying legal education to solve problems for clients, communities and the world. It also has an accelerated option — one of three in the nation — that allows students to finish their degree in two years

The program has attracted the attention of national media and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution honored the program with an award for excellence in 2006.

Mormon temples are different from regular Mormon chapels and meetinghouses that are used for Sunday services. Anyone, regardless of religion, may enter a meetinghouse and attend services. Only members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who are in good standing are allowed to enter temples. The nearest temple to Dayton is in Columbus.

For more information, contact Shawn Robinson, associate director of media relations, at 937-229-3391 or srobinson@udayton.edu.