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University of Iowa News Release

March 12, 2004

'Bridging the Gap' Conference Looks At 50 Years Of Brown

The University of Iowa College of Law's "Bridging the Gap" minority pre-law conference this year will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Supreme Court's Brown v. Board of Education decision with an educational law scholar.

James Forman Jr., a professor of law at Georgetown University and an expert on civil rights law and education, will deliver the keynote luncheon address at the conference on Friday, March 26 in the Boyd Law Building. He will look back on the progress that has made since the decision was handed down in 1954 and the challenges that still must be overcome.

Bridging the Gap is aimed primarily at undergraduate students from minority groups underrepresented in the legal profession who may be considering careers in law. The conference provides the information undergraduates need about the law school admission process, the types of programs offered at law schools and the opportunities available in law-related fields. Students also meet and talk with legal professionals and with law students currently attending the UI College of Law. The conference also sponsors a law school recruiting fair to provide participants an opportunity to speak to law school representatives and determine which law schools best meet their needs.

The conference includes workshops on writing an effective personal statement, Law School Admission Test (LSAT) preparation, law school study skills, financing a legal education and opportunities in law-related fields. Participants will also attend a mock law school class and a question-and-answer panel featuring minority lawyers.

Forman is a graduate of Brown University and Yale Law School. While attending law school, he was active in the Black Law Students Association and was a book review editor for the Yale Law Journal. Following graduation, he served as a judicial clerk for both U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and Judge William Norris of the 9th Circuit. Forman worked for six years with the Public Defender Service in Washington, D.C., where he represented juveniles and adults in serious felony cases. In 1999, Professor Forman was promoted to training director for new attorneys at the agency and developed the inaugural training program for the independent CJA bar. Forman's interest in educational programs for at-risk and court-involved youth led him to start, along with a colleague, the Maya Angelou Public Charter School in 1997.

For more information about the conference visit the "Bridging the Gap" web site at Or contact the UI College of Law admissions office at 319-335-9095, 800-553-IOWA, ext. 9095 (from outside Iowa), or via email at

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Service, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Snee, 319-384-0010,