Importance of Law
I enjoy teaching students about the importance of the law and the operation of our American political system. In a democracy, the quality of our governance is dependent upon how well informed we are as citizens. The importance of this task is reflected in the University of Mount Union’s mission statement which holds in part that “The mission of the University of Mount Union is to prepare students for … responsible citizenship.” Given this objective, I believe all of our students should take the American Government class!
This includes being appointed by the Governor of Ohio to chair the Ohio Ethics Commission, and then being appointed by another governor of the other party to be a member of the Ohio Judicial Selection Committee. Also, I was delighted when I was named a “Great Teacher at Mount Union” and my daughter was accepted to Harvard Law School.
I use the Socratic Method, which provides for an interactive class where students are challenged to explain their perspectives of the material. This promotes vigorous debate and analysis. In addition, I divide the class into groups and provide them with actual legal and political scenarios for them to address. Some of the topics include ethical dilemmas, free speech issues and legal dilemmas.
Changes at Mount Union
I developed the Legal Studies Program and the Public Service Program at Mount Union. While attending law school, I observed a large number of outstanding students who dropped out or failed because they were so poorly prepared for the demands of this program. After this experience, I decided to develop an undergraduate program that would provide the skills and information essential to succeeding in law school. Additionally, I have authored or co-authored five books and numerous law review and professional articles.
I have written a number of articles addressing affirmative action, constitutional law and the reform of the judicial selection process.
Best Part of the Job
Teaching students about the importance and complexity of law and American government and interacting with my students are the best parts of my job.
As a result of our internship program and our applied curriculum, our students have an opportunity to get a lot of experience and meet with employees in their field. Our students have been accepted to some of the most prestigious law schools in the country including Georgetown University, Cornell University and New York University.