News Release

UDM Law School Clinical Program Ranked Among Nation’s Best

University of Detroit Mercy School of Law is home to one of the nation’s Top 20 Clinical Law Programs, according to a recent ranking by National Jurist magazine. This accolade reflects the strong commitment by UDM Law to developing the program, which provides excellent opportunities for legal learning to students while offering important services to the community at no cost.

Thanks to connections with the Oakland County Bar Foundation, veteran centers throughout Michigan and the Ford Motor FREC Center in southwest Detroit, UDM clinics have assisted senior citizens, immigrants, veterans, people struggling with mortgage issues and misdemeanor defendants. They have also represented juveniles, criminal appellants and consumers, and many students have worked as mediators in district courts and community centers throughout Wayne County.

UDM’s clinical program is one of the oldest in the country, dating back to 1965, when it began under the direction of Professor Gil Donohue. UDM students have been learning the law in real practice ever since.

Through the years, the clinical program has garnered attention from the legal community, including a 2006 American Bar Association Judy M. Weightman award for work performed by the Mobile Law Office (a converted RV) and an American Bar Association Louis Brown Award in 2011, recognizing the work performed by the Veterans Clinic. In 2012, the Young Lawyers Division of the ABA recognized Professor Tammy Kudialis with an award for teaching young lawyers throughout the U.S. to represent veterans.

In congratulating the clinical program, Dean Troy Harris thanked professors Michael Bryce (Director), Margaret Costello (Veterans), David Koelsch (Immigration), Joon Sung (Mortgage Foreclosure), Tammy Kudialis (Veterans Appellate and Pro Bono) and Richard Krisciunas (Misdemeanor Criminal Defense) for their extensive work and the students for their continuing assistance to so many in need. He also expressed his appreciation for the work done by current and former adjunct professors Michael Morgan (Misdemeanor Criminal Defense), Anne Yantus (Criminal Appellate), Desiree Ferguson (Criminal Appellate), Martin Reisig (Mediation), Bern Dempsey (Mediation), Barbara Johannessen (Mediation), Emily Corwin (Mediation) and Ian Lyngklip (Consumer).

“The clinical program is a leading example of the excellent programs at UDM Law, including the consistently recognized legal writing program and the outstanding law firm program, the first of its kind in the country,” said Harris. “It makes sense to prepare law students for the real practice they will be entering. We have been doing it since 1965, and more recently have expanded our efforts to prepare our students even more intensively for their legal future.”

Learn more about the services offered by the UDM Clinical Law Program by calling 313-596-0262.                   

Release date: March 31, 2014

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