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Release: Aug. 30, 2002

College of Law welcomes 225 new students, four new faculty

The UI College of Law begins its fall semester with 225 incoming first-year students, the second highest total in the college's history, representing the third consecutive year of growth.

Pat Cain, associate dean of admissions for the College of Law and chair of the admissions committee, attributed the large number of incoming students to the slow economy, which has forced some people to reassess their career goals, and to the college's strong national reputation.

Last year's incoming class had 211 incoming students. The record size for an incoming class was the 229 students who entered in 1989.

Total enrollment for the college is 760 students.

Cain said this year's first-year students are diverse and committed to the law.

"They're energetic and enthusiastic about the law," she said. "Their academic performance as undergraduates was outstanding, and we continue to attract a more broadly diverse student body."

In addition, she said many of the students have an interest in public interest law, a trend seen at law schools across the country.

"We have been seeing an increasing number of students who want to help change the world for the better and see the law as a way to do that," she said. "Those kinds of students are attracted to the University of Iowa's College of Law because of programs like our clinic, because many of our faculty are experts in public interest law, and because our Master's of Laws degree (LLM) program has a focus on international human rights."

This year's first-year class consists of 131 Iowa residents and 93 students from other states (one is from Canada). It is made up of 116 males and 109 females. Some 39 students are from minority groups: seven are African-American, 16 are Asian-American, 12 are Hispanic and four are Native American. The oldest student is 52, the youngest is 21.

Cain expects an even larger number of applications next year because a record number of people took the LSAT entrance exam last June. In anticipation, the college has pushed its application deadline from March 1 to Feb.1 to ensure that all applications get properly reviewed.

She added, however, that a smaller class will be admitted next year because the college's faculty and facilities are not large enough to handle an ever-growing number of students.

In addition to new students, the College of Law also welcomes four new professors to the faculty this year: Jill Gaulding, Tung Yin, Christina Bohannan and Robert Porter.

Gaulding received her undergraduate degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her JD from Cornell University. She comes to the university from a law firm in Boston and has had teaching stints at Cornell and Northeastern University. She is an expert in public interest and labor law.

Yin received his undergraduate degree from the California Institute of Technology and his JD from the University of California, Berkeley. He worked at a Los Angeles law firm before joining the University of Iowa's faculty. He specializes in criminal and corporate/labor law.

Bohannan received her undergraduate and JD degrees from the University of Florida, where she finished first in her graduating law school class. She comes to the university after a clerkship with the 11th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals in Alabama. Her areas of expertise are copyright law and federal jurisdiction.

Porter received his undergraduate degree from Syracuse University and his JD from Harvard University. He joins the University of Iowa from the faculty of the University of Kansas School of Law and, before that, the Tribal Law and Government Center. He's also served as the chief justice of the supreme court of the Sac and Fox Nation of Missouri and as attorney general of the Seneca Nation of Indians. A member of the Seneca Nation of Indians, Porter is an expert in Native American/indigenous law.