Joint Statement of the Association of Academic Support Educators and the AALS, Section on Academic Support Programs

We are in the midst of a 400-year-old pandemic that is systemic racism. The continuous oppression and repeated slayings of Black and other marginalized populations in the face of police brutality, hatred, and bias must cease. Black Lives Matter. We call out the names of all those who have fallen victim to police brutality. George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, Rayshard Brooks, and the countless others whose names have strayed from the headlines We grieve with the families of every victim of anti-Black violence, and we must work to effect change in our sphere of influence.

As attorneys and legal educators, we are problem solvers and agents of change. The recent historic events test our resolve to forge ahead with our indispensable work of preparing and supporting socially conscious lawyers. We cannot stop now! As academic support educators, we acknowledge that we play a unique role in the lives of students and recommit to actively supporting them as whole people, not just law students. For the skills they acquire in law school are only good when they are matched with a strong social identity, and we want our students, as future defenders of justice, to be confident in that identity.

In this time, AASE & AALS Section on Academic Support Programs would like to reaffirm our
collective commitment to ensuring that legal education is accessible to all students and to
supporting academic support educators. We stand in solidarity with Black people and all
marginalized individuals in the struggle for equality, inclusion, and the promotion of justice.


AALS Section on Academic Support:

President: DeShun Harris, University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law
President-Elect: Melissa Hale, Loyola University Chicago School of Law
Past President: Antonia Miceli, Saint Louis University School of Law
Vice President of Diversity, Yolonda Sewell, Western Michigan University Cooley Law School
Treasurer: Twinette Johnson, University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law
Treasurer-Elect: Laura Mott, City University of New York School of Law
Secretary: Goldie Pritchard, Michigan State University College of Law
Host School Representative, Joni Wiredu, American University Washington College of Law
Host School Representative-Elect, Zoe Niesel, St. Mary’s University School of Law
Chair: Jamie Kleppetsch, DePaul University College of Law
Chair-Elect: Melissa Hale, Loyola University Chicago School of Law
Secretary: Kirsha Weyandt Trychta, West Virginia University College of Law
Treasurer: Joe Buffington, Albany Law School
Board Member: Afton R. Cavanaugh, St. Mary’s University School of Law
Board Member: Maryann Herman, Duquesne University School of Law
Board Member: Haley A. Meade, City University of New York School of Law
Board Member: Herbert N. Ramy, Suffolk University Law School
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