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UTPA students meet with UT Austin Law School dean
Posted: 01/18/2008
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Pre-law students, including participants in The University of Texas-Pan American's Law School Preparation Institute (LSPI), had an opportunity to meet Lawrence Sager, dean of The University of Texas at Austin Law School, Jan. 17 at the UTPA Social and Behavioral Sciences Building.

Sager is one of the nation's preeminent constitutional theorists and scholars. He came to Texas from the New York University School of Law, where he was the Robert B. McKay Professor and co-founder of the Program in Law, Philosophy and Social Theory. He has also taught at Harvard, Princeton, Boston University, UCLA and the University of Michigan and authored numerous articles and books regarding American constitutional law.

Pictured left to right are Dr. Jerry Polinard, chair of the UTPA Department of Political Science and pre-law adviser; Annie Franco, UTPA pre-law student and Law School Preparation Institute participant; Art Villarreal, UTPA alumnus and UT Austin Law School student; and Lawrence Sager, dean of The University of Texas at Austin School of Law.
During the event, sponsored by the UTPA Pre-Law Society, Sager described the challenges of entering and going to law school. He said he has found students from UTPA well prepared but advised them about the need for hard work and dedication to their studies to be a successful candidate and student in law school.

Sager was accompanied by UTPA alumnus Art Villarreal, who is now a second-year law student at UT Austin. A Valley native, Villarreal was a participant in the LSPI while at UTPA and also addressed the students about the skills and preparation needed for success in law school.

LSPI is an intellectually rigorous, summer program offered each year at UTPA to academically-qualified juniors and seniors interested in going to law school. Admission to the LSPI is by invitation only and is a very competitive process. Only full-time undergraduate UTPA students, who have a 3.0 GPA and at least 45 hours, are invited to apply. The LSPI has been very successful. More than 95 percent of the LSPI students who have applied to law school have been accepted to at least one.

For more information, contact Dr. Jerry Polinard, chair of the Department of Political Science and LSPI coordinator, at polinard@utpa.edu.