Photograph: Fall 2019 professionalism group leaders.

Professionalism Groups

Professionalism Groups meet the first six weeks of a 1L's first semester to discuss skills that faculty and legal employers have found critical to law school and career success. Some groups meet voluntarily for longer than six weeks; in all groups, Leaders are readily available to members throughout the entire first semester. The groups:

  • Provide social support for law students beginning their first semester
  • Provide role modeling to 1Ls forming their professional identity
  • Provide and discuss information that strengthens Washburn University School of Law's Six Core Strengths of:
    • Wellness
    • Competency
    • Communication
    • Leadership
    • Strategy
    • Ethics
  • Provide specific information, assignments, and feedback regarding:
    • Group contact information; scheduling; and law school basics (week 1)
    • Law school and outside resources for students (week 2)
    • Creating realistic law school schedules; short and long-term planning; deciding whether to take reduced loads; efficiency and competency tools and techniques (week 3)
    • Honor Code; continuing duty to disclose from law school admissions applications; bar character and fitness investigations; Honor Code quiz (week 4)
    • Detailed email etiquette, as explained by faculty and legal employers; email assignment (week 5)
    • Social media; networking; legal hierarchy and custom; effective lawyering skills (week 6)

Professionalism Group Leaders

Professionalism Group Leaders serve as mentors and role models to first-semester 1Ls, leading small groups of 4-6 students for at least the first six weeks of their semester.

2019 Fall Professionalism Group Leaders

(Leaders serving for a second year are bolded.)

A Section Leaders:
Brandon Curl
Kristen Egger
Libby Eggleston
Lindcy Gardner
Kate Lander
Nicole Phaneuf
Rachel Schwein
Tyler Schwein
Skyler Urban

B Section Leaders:
Emily Arida
Zach Bealer
Kaitlyn Bull
Kayla Dieker
Elyssa Ellis
Gabriella Ferraro
Thomas Henry
Tyler Laudick
Carissa Leffler
Dylan Wheeler

LL.M. Leader: Kelsie Howard

See also list of 1Ls assigned by Leader (72 KB PDF).

Photograph: Fall 2019 Washburn Law Professionalism Group Leaders.

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Professionalism Group Coordinator
Photograph: Jalen Lowry.

Jalen Lowry
Associate Dean for Student Affairs

Group Leader Qualifications

Each fall, the Associate Dean for Student Affairs invites about four J-Section upper-class students to be Leaders to the incoming spring 1Ls; each spring, the Associate Dean for Student Affairs invites about 20 upper-class students to be Leaders for the incoming fall 1Ls. Invitations are based on the following criteria:

  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 (usually higher);
  • Be recommended and approved by:
    • The student’s LARW professors
    • The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
    • The Associate Dean for Student Affairs

Leaders are also often recommended by other deans and faculty members. Leaders are chosen not only on the basis of their academic qualifications and stellar background of professionalism, but also on their reputation for collegiality and concern for their fellow-students. Leaders must also pass a comprehensive background check.