Distinction and Diversity
Dean Soifer (right) with William S. Richardson,
Chief Justice, Hawai‘i Supreme Court 1966–1982.
ALOHA! I am pleased to introduce you to our exciting Environmental
Law Program (ELP). From its inception in 1988, our ELP has grown into
a comprehensive program with a regional, national, and international reputation
for excellence in teaching, scholarship, and public service. The success
of ELP is hardly happenstance, but rather the product of the inspiration
and perspiration of our noteworthy faculty, very dedicated and talented
students, and the generous support of friends of ELP. The diverse interests
and expertise of our core and affiliate faculty allow us to offer a rich
program of study. Varied perspectives of government, public interest,
and private sectors are particularly accessible and important in Hawai‘i.
Our students have unparalleled opportunities to engage directly in activities
that include arguing mock cases before Hawai‘i, national, and international
judges; externing with the government, corporate law firms, public interest
law firms, and state agencies; testifying before law-making bodies; and
participating in national conferences. They also work in the lo‘i (taro
fields) with community groups, clean up streams and beaches, and take
service field trips to help restore native vegetation to deforested areas.
ELP graduates are working for the U.S. Department of Justice, serving
in the Hawai‘i Legislature, representing private landowners, and litigating
in federal court for environmental groups, together making remarkable
contributions to enlightened environmental stewardship in Hawai‘i, the
Pacific region, the U.S., and internationally. We invite you to meet,
learn from, and one day become part of a remarkable community of lawyers
by becoming a member of the ELP ‘ohana (family).
Dean and Professor of Law
THE WILLIAM S. RICHARDSON SCHOOL OF LAW
at the University of Hawai‘i is located in beautiful Manoa Valley on the
island of O‘ahu. Opened in 1973, it is the only law school in the State
of Hawai‘i. It is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a
member of the American Association of Law Schools. The School of Law’s
Juris Doctor (JD) program prepares degree candidates for active and effective
professional participation in legal counseling, advocacy, and decision-making—whether
in court or at the legislature, attorney’s office or corporate board room,
state agency or federal commission, community center or international
conference. At the School of Law, students are encouraged to study law
and legal institutions as integral parts of larger social, political-economic,
and ecological systems.
The School of Law’s accomplished student body of approximately 300 is
the most ethnically diverse in the nation, attracting students from a
number of Pacific/Asian countries, as well as from Hawai‘i’s many ethnic
groups. Our law school has one of the highest faculty- to-student ratios
in the country. In this ‘ohana setting, student-faculty interactions are
encouraged—whether it involves a lively class discussion of cutting-edge
land use issues, a field trip to a polluted waterway, service trips to
remove alien species, or collaborative efforts to teach community workshops.
The School of Law offers a rich curriculum that includes two specialty
certificates—Environmental Law and Pacific-Asian Legal Studies—providing
students focused courses of study and an advantage in launching their
careers. Students can also select from a number of clinics, both live-client
and simulated. Our moot court teams (including two different types of
environmental law teams) have an impressive history of success in both
national and international competitions, including several regional and
national championships. The School of Law was among the first in the U.S.
to adopt a pro bono (public service) graduation requirement. In academic
year 2003–04, the School of Law instituted an LLM (Master of Law and Letters)
for foreign lawyers.
The School of Law is proud of its very successful placement rate for
graduates, both in judicial clerkships and in a variety of rewarding careers
in Hawai‘i, the U.S. mainland, and throughout Asia and the Pacific. The
student body takes advantage of the vibrant intellectual atmosphere at
the School of Law and the University of Hawai‘i by participating in student
organizations, law journals, conferences, public service, and Hawai‘i’s
legal and social communities. Outside the classroom, students can enjoy
the unique recreational opportunities in Hawai‘i, such as paddling, surfing,
Hawaiian music, and hiking in native forests. Visit our website at www.hawaii.edu/law
to learn more about our outstanding School of Law.
To request application materials now, visit: http://www.hawaii.edu/elp/elpcontact.html