Category Archives: Events

Charlotte School of Law’s Immigration Law Society to Host Pulitzer Prize Winner Sonia Nazario

Every spring, Charlotte School of Law’s (Charlotte Law) Student Bar Association (SBA) hosts a Law Week event. Law Week is executed by various student organizations through the sponsorship of the SBA. Each student organization is given the latitude to organize an event centered on a theme selected by the SBA. This year’s Law Week, scheduled for April 6-10, is themed: Practice Ready. Practice readiness is a central pillar of Charlotte Law’s mission. SBA President, 3L William “Marlowe” Rary II, M.Ed., selected this theme because he felt that “it [was] important that students [were] prepared to practice law upon entrance to the bar.” Through Marlowe’s efforts, this year’s Law Week consists of over ten student organizations representing a variety of practice areas. Some of the practice areas include: international, business, property, sports & entertainment, criminal, and immigration. Out of the plethora of events scheduled for that week, there is one event that is gaining traction from students and prominent members of the city of Charlotte’s greater community. This event is a podcast event hosted by Charlotte Law’s Immigration Law Society (ILS) featuring Pulitzer prize-winning journalist and author of national bestseller, Enrique’s Journey, Sonia Nazario.

Nazario is an award winning journalist who spent over 20 years reporting and writing about social issues for various U.S. newspapers.  Nazario originally wrote about Enrique’s Journey as a series in the L.A. Times, which won her the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing in 2003. Random House turned Enrique’ Journey into a book that became a national bestseller. In 2014, when there was an influx on unaccompanied minors at the border, Nazario went to Honduras to report on the crisis and her article was published in the N.Y. Times. Nazario consequently addressed the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. Nazario has received various awards such as the George Polk Award for International Reporting, National Association of Hispanic Journalists Guillermo Martinez-Marquez Award, and Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. Nazario has been featured on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, NBC’s Meet the Press, and Anderson Cooper 360. Most recently, Nazario was named a 2015 Champion for Children by First Focus, and the 2015 Golden Door winner by HIAS Pennsylvania.

Carol Naples, 3L and President of ILS, was introduced to Enrique’s Journey in fall 2014 as a student in the Honorable Holmes-Simmons, “Undocumented Children and the Law” course.  Judge Holmes-Simmons is currently a sitting judge for the U.S. Immigration Court in Charlotte.  Naples, an aspiring North Carolina and New Jersey Immigration Law attorney, was so touched by Enrique’s Journey that she emailed Nazario to express her gratitude. Naples informed Nazario that her book was being used for her class and told Nazario about her desire to have Nazario visit Charlotte School of Law. Nazario immediately agreed and was willing to reduce her standard speaking fees to make this request a reality.  Despite Naples’ unrelenting efforts, Naples and the ILS were unable to secure enough funding to bring Nazario to the law school. However, Naples’ efforts did not end there. Naples again reached out to Nazario and proposed a podcast option. Nazario recognizing Naples’ efforts, agreed to host a one hour podcast without charge.

This event is reserved solely for Charlotte Law administration, faculty, staff, students and immigration stakeholders in the community. Naples hopes that this event will encourage Charlotte Law to bring notable individuals, like Nazario, to Charlotte Law and the local legal community. Enrique’s Journey allowed for “open discussions centered on immigration, our legal system, and how we, as new attorneys, can become involved,” said Naples. “For those who have no desire to work in Immigration Law, I hope that this event will give them a glimpse of the humanitarian aspect of Immigration Law and possibly provide some insight into a field of law that encompass and influence other areas of law such as criminal and family law,” Naples said.

Charlotte Law thanks Nazario for her willingness to contribute to the successful implementation of SBA’s 2015 Law Week through the Immigration Law Society.

If you are an immigration stakeholder in the Charlotte community interested in attending this event, please contact Carol Naples at to RSVP by April 7.

For more information regarding Charlotte Law’s Law Week events, contact SBA President Marlowe at

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Charlotte Law’s Criminal Law Society Hosts Death Penalty Panel


On March 18, WBOC-16, Delaware local news announced that the push to repeal the death penalty in Delaware was back on. A few days later, on Monday, March 23, 2015, Charlotte School of Law’s Criminal Law Society President, 3L Bradley Owens and legal intern at the 8th Amendment Project, would host a Death Penalty panel. This panel featured Jake Sussman, Criminal/Capital Defense Attorney; William “Bill” Stetzer, Homicide Prosecutor; Charlotte Law Professor Cindy Adcock, Death Penalty Post-Conviction Attorney; and Charlotte Law Professor Scott Broyles, Former Assistant U.S. Attorney. The topics ranged from philosophy and policy reasons behind capital cases to wrongful convictions and the economics of the state pursuing a death sentence. Professor Turowski, one of Criminal Law Society’s advisors, described the room as a “packed house” and shared that “the extraordinary questions raised by [Charlotte Law] students, reinforced the notion [that] we have a tremendously engaged and inspired student body making [Charlotte Law] a truly exceptional institution.”  Charlotte Law students in attendance shared how they “never thought about the secondary effects of the death penalty and how many people are involved in the process.” Professor Adcock, Death Penalty Post-Conviction Attorney, shared a story about a victim’s family who hated their brother for years for killing their parents. However, after 15 years, they forgave him and turned their energy to trying to save him. This story resonated with one of Charlotte Law’s students. “It’s interesting to see how time may affect the thoughts and feelings of victim’s families.  At first they are angry and revengeful, but after so many years they may change their mind and not want someone to die…sometimes it may be too late.” Dean Michael Farley, Charlotte Law Office of Student Engagement, described the event as “outstanding.” “This is an excellent example of how thoughtful, educational programming in the law school environment takes conversation to the next level,” Dean Farley attests. Students in attendance generally felt that this panel was informative and that it deserves a symposium.

Pictured: L to R: Bradley Owens, Professor Carol Turowski, William “Bill” Stetzer, Professor Scott Broyles, Jake Sussman, and Professor Cindy Adcock.

Pictured: L to R: Bradley Owens, Professor Carol Turowski, William “Bill” Stetzer, Professor Scott Broyles, Jake Sussman, and Professor Cindy Adcock.

Given Owens’ interests in the criminal justice system and his exposure to death penalty abolition work, “it was only fitting to host a Death Penalty panel as the President of the Criminal Law Society” Owens shared. However, Owens’ commitment to the Death Penalty issue stretches beyond this panel. In October, Owens was hired as a legal intern at the 8th Amendment Project to assist with their national campaign to abolish the death penalty nationwide.

Recently, Owens has been working with legislators and community leaders in his home state of Delaware to help support the death penalty repeal bill that was introduced in the Delaware Senate two weeks ago. To learn more about Owens and his work, see “Student Spotlight: Bradley Owens.

~Maritza T. Adonis~

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Textbook Giveaway!

textbook giveaway

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by | March 25, 2015 · 8:00 am

Library Sidebar & Coffee Event: “The Legacy of Justice Ginsburg: Unfinished Business for Women’s Rights”

women in the law

There is debate as to who was the first woman lawyer in the United States.  Some count Margaret Brent who served as counsel to Lord Baltimore, Governor of Massachusetts.  Arabella Mansfield, in 1869, became the first woman to officially obtain a state license (Iowa) which permitted her to practice law. According to the American Bar Association’s Commission on Women in the Profession, by the late 1990s, there were nearly 17,500 women in the legal profession and there have been four women who have served as justices on the highest court in the land, the U.S. Supreme Court.

Please join Professor Barbara Bernier on Monday, March 23 between 11-Noon in the East Reading Room of the Library as she discusses the influences women have had on the legal profession and what unfinished business is left.

If you can’t attend the coffee talk, then take a moment when you’re in the library next to browse our related book display.


Above is the book display that is currently in the library hallway near the East Reading Room. The poster above the books is a photograph of women suffragists picketing in front of the White House. Next to it is a photo of the current U.S. Supreme Court justices including three women: Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan. The top shelf of books are from the Charlotte Law collection on basic women’s rights through history; the middle shelf highlights the biographies of women judges and justices who have paved the way for current women in the law; and the bottom shelf has books and reports helpful to women practicing law today. A Charlotte Observer article about Sonia Sotomayor’s recent visit to Davidson College has been added. The books in this display are available for check out.

~Susan Catterall & Betty Thomas~

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Upcoming Event Reminder: North Carolina Certified Paralegal (NCCP) Exam Preparation Course

0315CSL-NCCP Exam Prep

This Exam Preparation Course will cover all sections of the NCCP Exam. The exam preparation course includes comprehensive course and
supplemental study material, test-taking tips, access to Charlotte School of Law’s Law Library, study groups, and networking opportunity. This course
is open to paralegal students, recent paralegal graduates, and working paralegals.

Two Day Program
Date: March 13 from 5-10p and March 14 from 8:15a-4p
Location: Charlotte School of Law – Uptown Campus
Parking: The Charlotte Plaza Parking Garage (connects directly to the Charlotte Plaza building)

Included in cost: course material, parking, lunch (Saturday), and additional study material.

Please register in advance. If space is available, fee will increase for onsite registration.


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