Pro Bono Barrister
By Charles F. Otey, Esq.
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
As a Brooklyn Law alumnus, this writer was pleased to receive a letter from BLS Dean Nicholas Allard recently spelling out the progressive initiative which will bring about dramatic change yet help the school remain one of the state’s finest.
"For example," wrote Dean Allard, “consider two of our new programs: the 2-year J.D. program, the first of its kind in the New York Metropolitan area, and our Public Interest Public Service Fellowships (PipS)." He sees the two year J.D. program as a viable academic option. This "Brooklyn 2-3-4" concept will offer "highly motivated and qualified students the opportunity to complete the full 3-year program in 24 months.”
He explained that the "PipS, our two-year fellowship program, pairs third-year students with public-interest employers, offers students meaningful work experiences and entree to public service jobs." A entire year in a firm with BLS guidance would, in this writer’s opinion, better prepare the aspiring lawyer than a series of lectures and tests far away from the legal marketplace, where third-year students will, hopefully, deal with clients on a regular basis.
Dean Allard stated that, addition to the foregoing, "We will also soon launch the nation’s most comprehensive program for training students to become lawyers for new businesses, an extraordinary venture that will demonstrate the strengths of our community and Brooklyn Law School’s role in its success,"
Truth be told, the dean’s letter went out to hundreds of other BLS graduates. But it does show that Brooklyn Law is realistically facing the myriad challenges confronting our profession these days.