Daily Archives: May 3, 2017

New Law Students Take Honor Code Oath During Auburn Hills Orientation Program

Incoming students at Western Michigan University Cooley Law School’s Auburn Hills campus participated in the law school’s Professionalism in Action (PIA) Orientation program April 28 and took the law school’s honor code oath. During the program, State Bar of Michigan (SBM) President-Elect Donald Rockwell spoke to students about the importance of being an ethical lawyer, and Macomb County Circuit Court Judge Mark Switalski administered the honor code oath.

Incoming WMU-Cooley Law School students take the WMU-Cooley Honor Code Oath on April 28.

During his remarks, Rockwell said, “The best lawyers I know are the ones with the highest ethics. You cannot be a good lawyer without being an ethical lawyer.”

As part of the Professionalism in Action event, law students had the opportunity to meet with judges and attorneys from the community and ask question about professional and ethical situations attorneys may face during their careers.

Before administering the law school’s honor code oath, Switalski spoke about the do’s and don’ts of a lawyer, but from the perspective of a judicial clerk.

The WMU-Cooley honor code is the commitment all entering students take, along with the law school’s faculty and staff during each orientation. At each campus, a judge administers the oath and new students are introduced to WMU’s honor code, which states, “ethics are as important as academic performance and the mastery of practical legal skills.

16th Circuit Court Judge Mark Switalski administers the WMU-Cooley Honor Code Oath during the law school’s orientation program on April 28.

State Bar of Michigan President-Elect Donald Rockwell speaks with incoming students at WMU-Cooley’s Auburn Hills campus during the law school’s Professionalism in Action Orientation Program.

During WMU-Cooley’s Professionalism in Action Orientation Program, judges and attorneys offered students advice on various professional and ethical dilemmas faced by attorneys in practice. Pictured are (front row, left-right) Assistant Dean Lisa Halushka; State Bar of Michigan President-Elect Donald Rockwell, Nill Rockwell PC; Associate Dean Joan Vestrand; (back row, left-right) Antoinette Raheem, Law and Mediation Office of Antoinette Raheem PC; Jeffery May, Kerr Russell & Weber, PLC; Hon. Mark Switalski, 16th Judicial Circuit Court; Hon. David A. Perkins, 36th District Court; and Hon. Edward Ewell, 3rd Judicial Circuit Court.

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Judge Administers Honor Code During Grand Rapids Campus Orientation

Judge Christina Elmore of the 61st Judicial District Court in Michigan spoke to incoming students April 27, and presented the honor code during Western Michigan University Cooley Law School’s orientation program at the Grand Rapids campus. All entering students, faculty and staff take the honor code oath at orientation as a commitment to the law school’s ethical standards.

Judge Christina Elmore administers the WMU-Cooley Law School honor code to entering students at the law school’s Grand Rapids campus orientation.

Prior to administering the oath, Elmore described professionalism and integrity as the cornerstones of the legal profession. She spoke of the value of self-policing and reporting duties, and how that obligation starts in law school.

She referenced lawyer jokes, which often have a negative punch line about the legal profession, and described how the jokes differed from her experiences.

“There is high importance of honor and integrity in our profession,” Elmore said. “When lawyers say something, I can believe what they are telling me, and I can trust what they are saying because they have integrity.”

She also touched on the importance of community service, encouraging the students to join the Grand Rapids Bar Association.

Elmore was appointed by Governor Rick Snyder to the Grand Rapids District Court bench in February 2016. She is a former judge advocate general for the U.S. Air Force, and has taught military law as an adjunct professor at WMU-Cooley. Her background also includes service as a former Kent County assistant prosecuting attorney and an assistant attorney general.

Judge Christina Elmore speaks to incoming students during WMU-Cooley Law School’s honor code portion of the Grand Rapids campus orientation on April 27.

New WMU-Cooley Law School students’ mentors pictured (left-right) Christopher Podoll, Kris Johnson, Melissa McKinney, Kristyna Nunzio, Holly Robrahn, Mary Anne Simmering, Bronte Reisinger, Emilee Umfleet and Lee Melde. The individuals were paired with new WMU-Cooley students as part of a new orientation mentoring program organized by the West Michigan Student Bar Association Mentorship Committee.

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