Junior Legal Writing Workshop Flourishes

Photograph: Jr. Legal Writing Workshop

After receiving rave reviews in 2014, Washburn Law's Legal Analysis Research and Writing (LARW) program hosted its 2nd Annual Junior Legal Writing Scholars' Workshop on July 24 and 25. This workshop is one of the few geared toward legal writing professors, and the only such event sponsored by a law school rather than a national organization. 

"We are pleased to continue Washburn Law's investment in the scholarship of legal writing professors" said Mastrosimone. "The Law School's continued support for this workshop reflects the value that Washburn Law places on legal writing as a doctrinal area and the importance that it places on those who teach this critical skill to a new generation of lawyers,' said Mastrosimone.

Legal writing professors from across the country joined Washburn Law's LARW professors to discuss their latest scholarship endeavors, ranging from new brainstorming ideas to nearly completed drafts. In the process, they critiqued and supported each other's writing.

Participants in the workshop included: Wendy Hess, assistant professor at the University of South Dakota School of Law; Maureen Johnson, associate clinical professor at Loyola Law School; and Michael Pinsof, solo practitioner and adjunct professor of paralegal studies at Roosevelt University in Chicago. Emily Grant and Joe Mastrosimone, LARW professors, organized and hosted the workshop at Washburn Law.

"I was able to get valuable feedback from my peers and also more experienced legal writing faculty (Grant and Mastrosimone) on my writing project while it's still in its early stages," Hess commented. "I trust the final piece will be much improved as a result. Washburn values legal writing and it shows."

"The workshop was invaluable, especially for a junior scholar," Johnson noted. "It was a tremendous opportunity and I believe my writing will be greatly enhanced both in the short-term and in the long-term. It was a whole lot of learning and a whole lot of fun!"

"The intimate, informal nature of the discussions provided the perfect atmosphere for the exchange of comments, ideas, suggestions, support, and encouragement," wrote Pinsof. "The Workshop offered the unique opportunity to brainstorm about unique and cutting edge ideas for legal scholarship." 

"Joe and I were thrilled with the scholars that joined us for the workshop," said Grant, who is also a co-director of the Institute for Law Teaching and Learning (ILTL), which is co-hosted by Washburn Law. "It's always so invigorating to be a part of scholarly discussions, meet new people in the discipline, and encourage junior professors as their careers develop."