Message from Dean Pratt

Dear Washburn Law Community,

As we honor Black History Month, we recognize the contribution of Washburn Law's Black alumni to the legal profession and the enduring quest for justice. We started the month with Delano Lewis, former ambassador to South Africa, speaking about his career and sharing his insight with younger alumni.

We are also unveiling a project that we have been working on to honor lawyers Elisha Scott, Charles Scott, John Scott, and Charles Bledsoe (see The Washburn Connection (PDF)). I am proud to announce that several of our alumni have joined me in making a donation to the law school building campaign to honor these Washburn Law educated African-American lawyers who filed the case of Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka challenging the injustice of racial segregation in public school education. To advance this effort, each donor has committed at least $10,000 to memorialize the Scott and Bledsoe lawyers' legacy in our new building. Honoring this history in our new building is important to many of our alumni, so if you would like to support this effort with a donation and join the donors’ discussion of what the recognition in the new building will look like, please email me at

Thankfully, the COVID-19 infection rate continues to decline here in Shawnee County, and several of our senior faculty members have received the vaccination. Consequently, we are back on campus and interacting with students in person, but we are continuing to implement safety practices such as requiring masks and social distancing.

We are planning for an in-person commencement ceremony for May and an in-person groundbreaking ceremony for our new building on June 11.

Our next in-person alumni event will be a traveling CLE program held August 3-7, 2021 in Missoula, Montana. So, if you enjoy fishing, hiking, zip lining, whitewater rafting or other outdoor activity, please plan to join us. Details are forthcoming on our website at

Due to the pandemic, we moved on-campus interviews from August to January, so students are continuing to interview for summer employment. If you have a need for student help this summer, please contact Dean Tammy King who will be happy to encourage our students to apply for your position. Hiring a student or recent graduate is one of the best ways to give back to your law school, so please consider our students for satisfying your hiring needs. It is too early to tell whether the jobs market will rebound now that COVID-19 is on the decline, but we are optimistic given the level of student interviewing that we are experiencing.

We are excited that applications to law school are up significantly both nationwide and at Washburn. Consequently, we expect to enroll a robust class in August. We will be hosting several in-person events for our admitted students later this spring and we plan to invite a few alumni to join us at those events. Your success as a lawyer is the most persuasive evidence that we can present to prospective students to convince them to choose Washburn for law school, so I hope to see a few of you at these events.



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Photograph: Dean Carla D. Pratt.

Carla D. Pratt

Dean Pratt talks about the impact education has had on her life and how law has a role in shaping higher education (3:43 minutes).
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Dean Pratt talks to "TopLawSchools" about Washburn Law's student life, academics, admissions process, career opportunties, employment outcomes, and more.