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Pre-Law Events at Geneseo

For information about events off-campus, click here.

Upcoming Pre-Law Events

Wednesday, February 5, 2020, at 2:30pm, Welles 128

The Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Workshop: An Insider Look At Law School by Geneseo Alumnus and American University Law School JD Candidate Cassondra McCormick

Geneseo alumna Cassie McCormick, currently a JD candidate (2L) at American University Law School, will give insights and advice on succeeding at law school. Practical tips will cover what to expect at law school, how you can prepare before graduating from Geneseo, and how to do well throughout your JD program. Seniors accepted into law school and juniors planning to apply are particularly encouraged to attend. Sophomores and first-years considering law school will also find it valuable.

A 2017 graduate of Geneseo, Cassie majored in Political Science, with minors in Public Administration and Sociology, and she was active in Mock Trial all four years. After a year at the State University of New York at Buffalo School of Law, Cassie transferred to the American University College of Law (in Washington, DC), with graduation coming up, in May 2020. Her various internship experiences have included service at the St. Lawrence County District Attorney's Office, Weinrieb Law Firm, Navajo Nation Department of Justice (Tax & Finance Unit), United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit with Judge Fuentes, and the United States Department of Justice (Tax Division, Criminal and Civil Sections). The plan is to take the New York Bar Exam in summer 2020, and be waived in as a licensed attorney into Washington, DC, where Cassie hopes to continue living and working.

Refreshments will be available.


Wednesday, April 1, 2020, at 2:30pm, Newton 203 or 204

Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Lecture: Elizabeth (Liz) M. Midgley '03

Lecture Description: Information pending

About the Speaker: Liz Midgley (Geneseo Class of 2003 and Buffalo Law School Class of 2006) is an experienced trial attorney with success defending matters involving medical malpractice, dental malpractice, long-term care facilities, professional malpractice defense, legal professionalism and ethics, premises liability, motor vehicle accidents, railroad law, and general negligence litigation. Ms. Midgley regularly counsels and advises attorneys, hospitals, physicians, long-term care facilities, businesses, and other medical professionals. For more information, see https://stillwellmidgley.com/personnel/elizabeth-m-midgley/ 

Refreshments will be available.

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Past Events

Wednesday, September 11, 2019, 2:30-3:45pm, Bailey, room 203

Annual Pre-Law Information And Networking Session

Whether you envisage a traditional law practice or are interested to explore the diverse career options available with a law degree, this is the event for you. Wherever you are in the process of considering or applying to law school, join us for free refreshments, hear about Geneseo's pre-law advisement program, and meet the pre-law advisers, leaders of law-related student clubs, and other students thinking about pursuing a law degree.

Wednesday, , 2019, at 2:30pm in Newton 203

Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Lecture: The Legal Landscape of Drug Development: Pharmaceutical Law and Human Subject Research Protection

Lecture Description:How does a pharmaceutical product go from lab bench to behind the pharmacy counter, and what’s a lawyer got to do with it?  Donna Hanrahan Gambaccini, Associate Director Corporate Counsel at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. will provide an overview of the laws and regulations governing drug development, from discovery to commercialization. This lecture will provide an introduction to the clinical trial process from a regulatory standpoint, human research subjects protections, and the role FDA and ethics committees play in the drug development process.

About the Speaker: Donna Hanrahan Gambaccini is a bioethicist and legal counselor in the life sciences.  As Associate Director Corporate Counsel at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Donna focuses on ensuring compliance with the laws and regulations impacting clinical trials and drug discovery and development worldwide.  Prior to joining Regeneron, Donna practiced as a corporate attorney at Lowenstein Sandler LLP, focusing her practice on life sciences matters, including M&A transactions, corporate governance, and regulatory compliance. While in law school, Donna worked at the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit at the New York Attorney General’s Office, where she gained perspective into regulatory enforcement in the pharmaceutical and healthcare space. Donna earned her B.A. in Political Science and SUNY Geneseo, her M.S. in Bioethics at Columbia University, and her J.D. with a Health Law Concentration at Seton Hall University School of Law.

Wednesday, January 30, 2019, at 2:30pm, Milne 213

The Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Workshop: An Insider Look At Law School by Geneseo Alumnus and Columbia Law School JD Candidate Andrew Kuntz '10

Geneseo alumnus Andrew Kuntz, currently a JD candidate (3L) at Columbia Law School, will give insights and advice on succeeding at law school. Practical tips will cover what to expect at law school, how you can prepare before graduating from Geneseo, and how to do well throughout your JD program. Seniors accepted into law school and juniors planning to apply are particularly encouraged to attend. Sophomores and first-years considering law school will also find it valuable.

Refreshments will be available.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018, 2:30-3:45pm, Welles 111 (Harding Lounge)

Annual Pre-Law Information And Networking Session

Whether you envisage a traditional law practice or are interested to explore the diverse career options available with a law degree, this is the event for you. Wherever you are in the process of considering or applying to law school, join us for free refreshments, hear about Geneseo's pre-law advisement program, and meet the pre-law advisers, leaders of law-related student clubs, and other students thinking about pursuing a law degree.

Wednesday, April 4, at 2:30pm in Newton 203

Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Lecture

Michael Hecker '05: "Environmental Law and Regulation: The Role of the Government, the Environmental Lawyer, and You"

Mike Hecker, Partner at Hodgson Russ LLP, Buffalo, will provide a general overview of environmental law and regulation, federal delegation, and the regulated community/citizen's involvement. He will also discuss what it means to be an "environmental lawyer," various areas of environmental law, and some overarching themes of environmental practice.

Refreshments will be served, and there will be an opportunity to talk with the speaker after the lecture.

Speaker Biography

Now a Partner at Hodgson Russ LLP, Buffalo, Mike graduated from Geneseo in 2005 and Buffalo Law School in 2009. He has a broad-based environmental and energy-related practice, with a focus on transactional, regulatory compliance counseling, administrative and white-collar environmental defense, and remediation-based project assistance. He has assisted regional, national, and international clients with various environmental needs, including working on a wide range of state and federal environmental issues and projects, assisting clients with regulatory enforcement actions and permitting, environmental due diligence review, and environmental risk assessment and allocation guidance.

Michael J. Hecker


Wednesday, January 31, 2018, 2:30pm, Milne 105

The Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Workshop: An Insider Look At Law School

Geneseo Alumnus and Cornell Law School JD Candidate Max Garnaat

Geneseo alumnus Max Garnaat, currently a JD candidate (2L) at Cornell Law School, will give insights and advice on succeeding at law school. Practical tips will cover what to expect at law school, how you can prepare before graduating from Geneseo, and how to do well throughout your JD program. Seniors accepted into law school and juniors planning to apply are particularly encouraged to attend. Sophomores and first-years considering law school will also find it valuable.

Refreshments will be available.


Wednesday, September 13, 2017, 2:30-3:45pm, Bailey 203

Annual Pre-Law Information And Networking Session

Whether you envisage a traditional law practice or are interested to explore the diverse career options available with a law degree, this is the event for you. Wherever you are in the process of considering or applying to law school, join us for free refreshments, hear about Geneseo's pre-law advisement program, and meet the pre-law advisers, leaders of law-related student clubs, and other students thinking about pursuing a law degree.


Wednesday, April 5, 2017, 2:30pm, Newton 203

Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Lecture

Andrea Calvaruso: "Days in the Life of an Intellectual Property Lawyer"

Ms. Calvaruso will give an overview of her background and provide insight into the intellectual property and related matters she deals with day-to-day on behalf of clients in the fashion, retail and entertainment industries.

Refreshments will be provided.

Speaker Biography

Andrea Calvaruso is a partner in Kelley Drye & Warren LLP’s New York office and chair of the Trademark and Copyright practice group. She served as the chair of the Copyright and Literary Property Committee of the New York City Bar Association for the 2013-2016 term. Her work has been recognized in the 2013-2016 editions of Chambers USA and the 2011-2016 U.S. editions of The Legal 500, reporting that her clients praise her as “smart, reliable, trustworthy, knowledgeable and responsive,” that she “understands IP inside out,” is “smart, capable and pragmatic” and “has a dynamic personality and is very good at negotiating through difficult matters.” Ms. Calvaruso’s practice is unique in that she is involved in both prosecution and litigation. As a result, she offers her clients far more breadth and depth of practice than most of her peers. She not only helps her clients build and protect their intellectual property rights through strategic counseling and domestic and international prosecution, but also aggressively represents such clients in court and other adversarial proceedings. Ms. Calvaruso regularly negotiates and drafts intellectual property-related agreements, and advises on issues pertaining to the evaluation of ownership interests, licensing matters and content and trademark clearance. She also manages worldwide trademark portfolios and trademark enforcement programs, including instruction and supervision of litigation and opposition proceedings abroad. Ms. Calvaruso also litigates trademark, trade dress, unfair competition, and copyright cases. Ms. Calvaruso’s experience includes handling actions in U.S. Federal District Court and inter partes proceedings before the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB), and ICANN Proceedings.

Education
Syracuse University College of Law, J.D., 1996, magna cum laude, Order of the Coif; Syracuse Law Review, associate notes and comments editor, Legal Research and Writing Program, teaching assistant.
SUNY - Geneseo, B.S., 1992, Management Science.


Wednesday, February 1, 2017, 2:30pm, Milne 105

The Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Workshop: An Insider Look At Law School

Geneseo Alumna and Buffalo Law School JD Candidate Christina Kennedy

Geneseo alumna Christina Kennedy, currently a JD candidate at Buffalo Law School, will give insights and advice on succeeding at law school. Practical tips will cover what to expect at law school, how you can prepare before graduating from Geneseo, and how to do well throughout your JD program. Seniors accepted into law school and juniors planning to apply are particularly encouraged to attend. Sophomores and first-years considering law school will also find it valuable.

Refreshments will be available.


Wednesday, October 5, 2016, 5pm, Bailey 204

Pre-Law Welcome Event

The Geneseo Pre-Law Advisory Committee will host an informational and networking event for all students interested in attending law school after graduation and/or taking part in pre-law club activities while still at Geneseo. This is a chance to meet and mingle with your departmental pre-law advisor, Phi Alpha Delta and Mock Trial club leaders, and fellow students interested in legal careers. You will also learn about Geneseo's Pre-Law Advisement Program, which can help you decide about and prepare for law school.

Refreshments will be provided.


Wednesday, April 6, 2016, 2:30pm, Newton 203 or 204

Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Lecture

Jacqueline Flug, General Counsel, New York State Liquor Authority

Ms Flug, who is also president-elect of the Women's Bar Association of the State of New York, will give a lecture titled, "Women, Where Are We Going?" (a title inspired by the Wendy Wasserstein play "The Heidi Chronicles," which Flug read as a student at Geneseo). Focusing on the work of the Women's Bar Association of the State of New York, the speaker will discuss progress and challenges to gender equality under the law and in the legal profession.

Refreshments will be provided.


Wednesday, February 3, 2016, 2:30pm, Milne 105

The Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Workshop: An Insider Look At Law School

Geneseo Alumni and Buffalo Law School JD Candidates Ibi Tariq and Christina Kennedy

Geneseo alumni Ibi Tariq and Christina Kennedy, currently JD candidates at Buffalo Law School, will give insights and advice on succeeding at law school. Practical tips will cover what to expect at law school and how you can prepare before graduating from Geneseo. Seniors accepted into law school and juniors planning to apply are particularly encouraged to attend. Refreshments will be available.


Wednesday, September 30, 2015, 2:30-3:45pm, Bailey

Pre-Law Welcome Event

The Geneseo Pre-Law Advisory Committee will host an informational and networking event for all students interested in attending law school after graduation and/or taking part in pre-law club activities while still at Geneseo. This is a chance to meet and mingle with your departmental pre-law advisor, Phi Alpha Delta and Mock Trial club leaders, and fellow students interested in legal careers. You will also learn about Geneseo's Pre-Law Advisement Program, which can help you decide about and prepare for law school.

Refreshments will be provided.


Thursday, September 17, 2015, 5:00-6:00pm, GOLD Leadership Room (Union 114)

Day In The Life Series: Legal Practice

Guest Speaker: Jessica Paulin '09, Nixon Peabody, Rochester, NY

Jessica Paulin is an associate in Nixon Peabody’s Public Finance group. She represents municipal issuers on matters related to taxable and tax-exempt bond financings, sale-leaseback transactions and secured lending. Her practice primarily focuses on two areas within public finance: representation of industrial development agencies and local development corporations in transactions granting state and local tax exemptions; and work with universities and nonprofit organizations on financing new projects or improvements or refunding existing obligations through tax-exempt bond financing.


Wednesday, April 8, 2015, 2:30pm, Newton 203 or 204

Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Lecture

International Lawyer John Knechtle

International lawyer John Knechtle will give a lecture titled, "Hate Speech and American Exceptionalism." Currently Senior Lecturer in Law at the University of the West Indies, in Trinidad, as part of his duties as Professor at Florida Coastal School of Law, Knechtle worked in the past for the Supreme Court of the United States (as a messenger, getting to know justices in the 1980s). After working for a number of years with Legal Services Corporation, he joined the American Bar Association's Central and East Eurasian European Law Initiative, as Director of Legal Assessments and Director of the Environmental Law Program. Knechtle's work with CELI, which provided consulting for new and revised areas of law in the immediate Post-Cold-War era, took him to Central Europe and republics of the former Soviet Union, including Kirghizia, Uzbekistan, and Armenia.


Wednesday, March 25, 2:30pm, Milne 105

The Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Workshop: An Insider Look At Law School

Geneseo Alumni and Buffalo Law School JD Candidates Alie Williams & Ibi Tariq

Geneseo alumni Alie Williams and Ibi Tariq, currently JD candidates at Buffalo Law School, will give insights and advice on succeeding at law school. Practical tips will cover what to expect at law school and how you can prepare before graduating from Geneseo. Seniors accepted into law school and juniors planning to apply are particularly encouraged to attend. Refreshments will be available.


Rochester Attorney Visiting Campus 2/18 All College Hour in Newton 203

Phi Alpha Delta Geneseo

Interested in knowing about networking with real attorneys or what it's like to take on a real court case? Phi Alpha Delta, Geneseo's Professional Pre-Law Fraternity is bringing Gary Muldoon to campus, an attorney from the Rochester area. Mr. Muldoon will just be wrapping up a big trial, and will be speaking about that, the best ways to network when you meet real attorneys or other legal personnel, and his recent book, *The Education of a Lawyer*, covering much of these same ideas concerning professional development. We hope that you will consider joining us for what will be an informative event for those interested in becoming attorneys, especially regarding what steps you need to start taking now to prepare yourself for law school, and ultimately job opportunities.


Wednesday, January 28, 2:30pm, Bailey 102

The Law School Experience: Presentation and Q&A

Geneseo Alumni and Buffalo Law School JD Candidates Steve Fisher and Christina Kennedy

Geneseo alumni Steve Fisher and Christina Kennedy, currently JD candidates at Buffalo Law School, will talk about their experience so far in law school. Steve and Christina were both heavily involved in the development of pre-law organizations here at Geneseo, namely Phi Alpha Delta and Mock Trial. Any students interested in attending law school after graduation and/or interested in joining our pre-law clubs are encouraged to attend this presentation and bring questions for Steve and Christina.


Wednesday, October 8, 2014, 2:30pm, Doty 300

Lecture: "Is the Rule of Law Dead in America?"

Political Science & International Relations Department Presents: Bruce Frohnen of Ohio Northern University


Wednesday, September 24, 2014, 2:30pm, Newton 201

Lecture on United States Supreme Court Decision Making

Political Science & International Relations Department Presents: "Forty more Years?"
Richard L. Pacelle, Jr. Professor of Political Science, University of Tennessee Ph.D. Ohio State University 
Professor Pacelle’s teaching and research interests are in the field of American politics with a focus on public law. Pacelle is the author of four books and several articles and book chapters. His coauthored book, Decision Making by the Modern Supreme Court, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2011, “Dissensual Decision-Making: Revisiting the Demise of Consensual Norms within the U.S. Supreme Court”, “Beyond Two Terms: Shaping the Supreme Court and a Legacy”, “Rebuilding Institutions and Redefining Issues: The Reagan Justice Department and the Reconstruction of Civil Rights” 


Thursday, April 24, 2014, 2:30-3:30pm, Hunt Room (College Union)

Annual Alumni Law Career Panel (reception to follow)

Robert Muller, Class of 1983: Cypress LLP, Los Angeles

James Sheehan, Class of 1971: Stetson College of Law Professor and Author

Andrea Vovonese, Class of 1991: Akin Gump, Washington, DC

Erik Walsh, Class of 2001: Federal Reserve Bank of New York


Wednesday, April 23, 2014, 2:30-3:45pm, Newton 203 or 204

Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Lecture

Bethany J. Hills '01, MPH-JD and attorney, Epstein Becker Green, NYC

Lecture topic: ObamaCare beyond the Mandate: the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act as a case study for the broad practice of health law - including how aspects of PPACA touch on managed care, provider reimbursement, compliance, HIPAA, False Claims Act enforcement, anti- kickback, medical device tax etc. These are all specialty areas in health law impacted by the new law.

About the speaker:  Bethany J. Hills, Esq. (Geneseo Class of 2001), of the New York office of Epstein Becker Green, serves the firm's Health Care and Life Sciences practice. She counsels life science, medical device, and health care provider businesses on a broad range of reimbursement, regulatory, and compliance matters. Ms. Hills earned a B.A. summa cum laude in sociology from Geneseo, a J.D. cum laude from SUNY Buffalo School of Law, and a M.P.H. from SUNY Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.


Monday, February 24, 2:30-3:30pm, Newton 203 or 204

Lecture on Law Governing Special Education Obligations for Public Schools (Sponsored by the Department of Political Science)

(followed by a Q-A session for students interested in applying to law school)

Guest Lecturer: John V. Jacobi, Dorothea Dix Professor of Health Law & Policy, Seton Hall Law School 

Lecture topic: The Rowley standard for Free Appropriate Public Education, which limits districts' obligations to provide "some educational benefit" and support that is "reasonably calculated to enable the child to achieve passing marks and advance from grade to grade."  Particularly for high-achieving children with significant disabilities, that standard is still controversially narrow.

Professor Jacobi has also agreed to meet with pre-law students after the lecture to answer questions about applying to law school, and about Seton Hall's law programs. We will move to Newton 209 for this part of the program, at approximately. 3:30pm.


Wed, Jan 29, 2:30-3:45pm, Milne Library 105

The Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Workshop: An Insider Look At Law School

Geneseo Alumna and Buffalo Law School JD Candidate Alie Williams

Every year, a Geneseo graduate enrolled in law school presents the Jane Ryan Fund Pre-Law Workshop. MS. Williams will offer practical information and advice on doing well at law school, including tips on preparing as an undergraduate as well as what to expect and how to succeed as a JD student. Questions are welcome, about these topics and about applying to law school.


Tues, Dec 3, 1:00-2:00pm, Fireside Lounge, MacVittie College Union

Q & A on Law School and Legal Careers

Janet Callahan, Geneseo Class of 1976 and Managing Partner at Hancock Estabrook, LLP

We hope many of you take this opportunity to learn about the path one student took from Geneseo to senior-level legal practice.


Mon Nov 18, 2-13, 5:30-6:30pm, South 338

Law School Admissions Workshop

Presented by: Assistant Deans of Admissions: Isabel Disciullo, Earl Mack and George Justice, Touro

Topic: Law School Preparation: Curricular and Co-Curricular Dos and Don'ts


Wed, Oct 16, 2:30-3:30pm, Sturges Auditorium (219)

Law School Admissions Workshop

Presented by: Suny Buffalo Law School Admissions Coordinator: Marie McLeod

Topic: The JD Program and How to Apply


Wed Oct 2, 2013,  5:30-6:30pm, Welles 138

Law School Admissions Workshop

Presented By: Senior Director Of Admissions: Grant Keener, Penn State University

Topic: Intro To Law School Application: Whether, Why And How


Wednesday, 24 April 2013 from 4-5PM in Welles 24

Jane Aschenbrenner Ryan '75 Pre-Law Lecture

1 Legal System + 2 Jurisdictions = Plenty of Surprises

George Vona, a Toronto lawyer in private practice will be speaking on examining the shared legal system and often different practice in Canada and the United States.

This lecture will be of special interest to Pre-Law, Legal Studies, and International Relations students as well as all those interested in court decisions concerning gay and lesbian civil rights. All members of the Geneseo community are welcome.

Speaker Bio:

George Vona is a former professional pianist who at the age of 40 developed the symptoms of focal dystonia, a neurological repetitive stress disorder that effectively ended his playing career. At a time when most people begin daydreaming of retirement, Dr Vona, faced with a mortgage, a new-born daughter and limited career options, and against all common-sense, decided to go to back to school to study law. Dr Vona is currently practicing law as a sole practitioner concentrating in the areas of Wills and Estates and Real Estate.
George Vona holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Hartt School, University of Hartford, and a Juris Doctor from the University of Toronto Law School.

During his musical career, he and his wife Lark Popov, performed together as a celebrated concert piano duo and their second compact disc, The Book of Mirrors, was nominated for a Juno Award, the Canadian equivalent of the Grammy Awards.

During his law studies, he proudly co-authored the amicus brief submitted by an association of international lawyers for In re Marriage Cases when the case was argued before the California Court of Appeal in 2006.

George Vona, a Toronto lawyer profile