Conferences & Events

The Office of Diversity Services collaborates with other offices and student organizations on a variety of special events.

Events include the annual Sylvania Woods Conference on African Americans and the Law, the Hispanic Law Conference, First-Year Diversity Day, Martin Luther King birthday commemoration, and the 2012 Women of Color and the Law Conference.

Check the events calendar often for updates on upcoming programs, and read more below about our events from the 2011-2012 year.

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Event Highlights 2011-2012

16th Annual Sylvania Woods Conference

The law school and legal community came together for the 16th Annual Sylvania Woods Conference in April to address matters of law and associated issues that affect African-American life and culture. This year three African-American federal district judges, all distinguished alumni, participated in a discussion on how the law relates to the African-American community. MORE


Honorable Jeannie Hong '92 Honored at APALSA Alumni Awards Dinner

The annual Asian Pacific Americans and the Law (APALSA) Alumni Awards Dinner was held in March 2012, and highlighted the continuing need to empower and encourage the participation of the Asian Pacific American community in the legal field, and recognize the important contributions of the law school's Asian Pacific American alumni to the legal profession. APALSA hosted a dinner to recognize and honor AUWCL alumni and students who are committed to serving the APA community. The recipient of the 2012 AUWCL Distinguished Alumni Award was the Honorable Jeannie Hong, '92, District Court of Maryland, District 1, Baltimore City. MORE

Annual Hispanic Law Conference Asks 'What is at Stake in the 2012 Elections?'

The annual Hispanic Law Conference, which had its fifteenth anniversary in spring 2012, brings together the Latino and other interested parties to discuss issues, primarily legal and political, that will have a profound impact on that community and its citizens. This year's event brought together Latinos and Latinas from the American University Washington College of Law community and the Washington, D.C., area to discuss the high-stakes election year. In addition to an issues-oriented main program, other elements of the day include a scholarship presentation by the Latino Law Students Association to aspiring high school students, a careers activity, and the awards dinner that recognizes excellence within and beyond the walls of the law school. The event is co-sponsored by the law school and the Hispanic bar associations of the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia. MORE

Event Addresses Unresolved Questions After the Repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell

During this 2012 Founders Celebration panel discussion sponsored by the Program on Law & Government, speakers discussed the persistent discrimination against transgender service members, unanswered questions concerning the treatment of spouses of LGBT service members in civilly-recognized same-sex marriages, and what remains to be done to achieve equality for all members of the Armed Forces in the aftermath of the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

Women of Color and the Law: Gaining Access, Achieving Success

This two-day interactive conference in the spring 2012 addressed challenges faced by women of color in gaining greater access to legal education, employment, and services. By bringing together prospective and currently-enrolled law students with jurists, practitioners, legal scholars, and providers and recipients of legal services, the conference served as a forum for participants to share experiences, offer counsel, foster mentorships, and honor pathfinders who are enabling greater access to success in the legal profession for women of color. Veryl Miles, dean of The Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law was the keynote speaker. MORE

Alumna Shares New TV Series Inspired by Her Career

Four days before its prime-time television premiere, Judy Smith '86 treated the law school community to a sneak peek of the first two episodes of ABC's Scandal, whose main character, Olivia Pope, is based on Smith's career. Students were given a glimpse into her high-powered career as a Washington problem-solver and crisis manager. MORE

Annual Event Commemorates the Birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

In January 2012, the law school held the 13th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Commemoration. The evening event featured a keynote speech by Dr. Josiah Young, professor of systematic theology at the Wesley Theological Seminary. Dr. Young's speech, "A Drum Major for Justice," was followed by a collaborative reading by members of the law school community led by Professor Ann Shalleck.

Dean's Diversity Council Hosts Annual Meeting and Dinner

In Oct. 2011, the Dean's Diversity Council was recognized for ten years of service during its annual dinner. Council members are jurists, scholars, practitioners, alumni, and friends of the law school. Members work with students through the Office of Diversity Services as mentors, program participants, and counselors.


Contact Sherry Weaver in the Office of Diversity Services (202-274-4032) for questions about past or upcoming conferences and events.