Daniel Webster Scholar Program Featured in Wall Street Journal

Daniel Webster Scholar Program Featured in Wall Street Journal

Saturday, February 14, 2015
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The Daniel Webster Scholar Honors Program was featured in the Jan. 4, 2015 edition of the Wall Street Journal, in an article noting the program's success producing lawyers who are ready to practice immediately upon graduation.

The article, written by Palazzolo, includes the following excerpt:

"In recent years, as more clients have refused to pay for young lawyers to learn on the job, many law schools have tinkered with their curricula, making courses more practical and less theoretical as graduates compete for fewer openings.

Most of these efforts are too new to assess. But a study to be released this month suggests that the University of New Hampshire’s Daniel Webster Scholar Honors Program, launched in 2005, has largely succeeded in turning out new lawyers who are ready to practice law when they graduate.

The study, led by IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System at the University of Denver, found that students in the program outperformed lawyers who had been admitted to practice within the past two years.

Participation in the program—not scores on the Law School Placement Exam or class rank—was the only predictor of student performance on the standardized client interview."

One reason for that success? Program Director John Garvey says it's the hands-on experience students gain in real-world settings, where things don't always go 100 percent as planned. The article explained in the following excerpt:

"The program contrasts sharply with the traditional lecture format and focus on doctrinal education at many law schools.

Daniel Webster scholars are given frequent feedback and asked to reflect on their performance at nearly every step. They make mistakes in a controlled setting, learn from them and push forward, Mr. Garvey said.

'We tell students this is going to be a safe place to make mistakes because that is what you will grow from,' he said."