University News

School of Law Offers Unique Four-Week Mini-Law Program to Community

Published: June 02, 2017 | Categories: Business, Law, All News
Judge Kenneth Neiman

Western New England University School of Law will again open its doors to the community with a four-week program focused on demystifying the law. The Mini-Law School will be held on...

Western New England University School of Law will again open its doors to the community with a four-week program focused on demystifying the law. The Mini-Law School will be held on October 3, 10, 24, and November 1, 2017, at Western New England University, 1215 Wilbraham Road, Springfield, MA. The program will provide practical knowledge to assist non-lawyers in gaining an understanding of areas of the law that are relevant to their everyday lives. Each class will be taught by Law School faculty and moderated by retired Judge Kenneth Neiman.

Blending theory and practice, the classes will focus on end-of-life law, protecting children and families, workplace law, and credit and bankruptcy. Tuition is $35, For more information go to:

Tuesday, 10/3/17 – What We Mortals Need to Know About End-of-Life Law, with Law Professor Barbara Noah. Using clinical case scenarios for discussion, this session will introduce the key legal and ethical concepts that govern our end-of-life options. It will include discussion of the right to refuse unwanted medical treatment, advance care planning, and decision-making for another person. It will also include an update on the legalization of medically-assisted dying and an overview of how laws in this area try to balance patient autonomy with concerns about abuse and coercion. 

Tuesday, 10/10/17 – Protecting Children, Protecting Families, with Law Professor Jeanne Kaiser. This session will explain the nuts and bolts of the child protection system. It will also focus on the difficult questions of balancing the rights of parents to raise their children, with the need to protect the safety and emotional wellbeing of those children. It will also discuss the role of race, poverty, and disability in the challenging dilemmas faced by the system.

Tuesday, 10/24/17 – Workplace Law in the Era of Globalization and the Gig Economy, with Law Professor Harris Freeman. This session will explore the challenge of regulating new types of employment arrangements and business models that are restructuring global labor markets. Topics will include the expansion of precarious work, internet-based work arrangements such as Uber and Lyft, violations of wage and hour law, employee privacy, and the role of labor unions.

Wednesday, 11/1/17 – The Use of Credit and the Choice to File for Bankruptcy Relief, with retired Judge Henry Boroff. What are credit scores, how are they calculated, how are they used by the credit industry, and what can be done to improve them? Is the use of a debt relief agency a good idea? This session will discuss the benefits and risks of using credit, the bankruptcy system, and how bankruptcy can be used to provide a fresh start for those with debt that has grown beyond their control.

The Mini-Law School is directed by Beth D. Cohen, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, and Pat Newcombe, Associate Dean for Library and Information Resources. In addition to the esteemed School of Law faculty, the program is fortunate to have the Honorable Kenneth Neiman serve as the “Dean” of the Mini-Law School. "After five weeks, you won't be a lawyer," Cohen said, "but you will be able to better understand laws that have an effect on your life. And unlike traditional law school, there are no tests or homework." "Individuals interested in becoming better informed and engaging in stimulating dialogue will find this program rewarding," Newcombe said. "No legal knowledge is necessary, just a curious mind."