Pre-Law Activities

Phi-Alpha Delta Seeks to Expand
Phi-Alpha-Delta Pre-Law Fraternity has only been at Hampden-Sydney since 2006. With such a short history we are currently continuing to build our tradition. This tradition includes, but is not limited to, educating students about law school, what is required in law school and what the student will experience after law school. In doing so we continue to bring in speakers who are either in law school or have been practicing law for either a short time or some who have been in law for many years. Currently the executive board is made up of: President- Steven Thacker '13, Vice President- Alexander Cartwright '13, and Vice President of Communication and Publication- Joseph Tritico '12.  Recently Steven Thacker, President of Hampden-Sydney's Phi-Alpha Delta Chapter, along with three other students: Benjamin Quinn '13, Chase Baldwin '14, and Taylor Bohon '14 traveled to Washington D.C. for the Phi-Alpha-Delta Pre-Law Leadership Symposium. This Symposium not only educated the Pre-Law Fraternity members on how to be effective leaders but also gave them ideas on how to grow the Pre-Law program. The Pre-Law Fraternity gained insight on the need for committees, recruiting, and  the continued fraternity desires to effectively educate students on law school to help the student make an informed decision on whether law school is right for them. This was an extremely worthwhile trip and from it, it is our, the executive committees desire to build upon the information and continue to grow our local Chapter was energized.

LSAT Preparations in the Classroom and Online
The Pre-Law Society believes that one of the most important ways to prepare Hampden-Sydney Men to be successful Law School applicants, is to make sure they are successful on the LSAT. Philosophy Professor Dr. Marc Hight has extensive experiences with the Logic & Argumentation techniques that the LSAT tests. In fact, Dr. Hight has written questions for previous LSATs. The Pre-Law Society was able to have Dr. Hight teach two LSAT sessions to our members. During the first session Dr. Hight explained his strategies for taking the LSAT based on the strategies he used to create LSAT questions. Students were given a packet of LSAT questions to practice. One week later, at our second session, Dr. Hight demonstrated how to approach each of the specific questions in the packet.
Dr. Hight stressed that the most important thing one can do to prepare for the LSAT is to practice. Several members of the Pre-Law Society are taking formal LSAT reparations courses off campus; the PLS has been able to secure funds to subsidize the costs of these prep courses for future students.

Hampden-Sydney Alumni at University of Alabama Law
Mr. Spencer Mobley and Mr. Sam Rosten came to visit the Pre-Law Society in September. During a Friday afternoon, the Pre-Law Society met Spencer and Sam for a discussion about life in Law School. Spencer and Sam distributed materials about Alabama Law; they spoke about how their experiences at Hampden-Sydey had prepared them for Law School, and they told Pre-Law members about the work they do on the Law Review. Students asked about the Law School workload, classes, social life and grading policies. After a discussion that lasted well over an hour, the Pre-Law Society continued the conversation with Spencer and Sam during a dinner. By the end of the evening the Pre-Law students had become experts on summer internships during Law School, and how to succeed at Alabama Law.

Pre-Law Conference for Minority Students
As a delegate at the Virginia State Bar Young Lawyers Conference at Washington & Lee School of Law, I had the distinguished opportunity to represent Hampden-Sydney College, and to also gain insight on the process of preparing for Law School.   Students were given practice problems from Kaplan Representative Anne Clarry and she informed students of some techniques that can be helpful when answering LSAT questions.   After the Practice LSAT session there was a panel discussion with Admission officials from every Virginia Law School.  At this time, we were able to ask each law school representative questions about applying and each law school also shared information on what each of their respective law school was looking for in applicants.  In addition to our panel discussion, students were given a court case for a Mock Law class with Professor Samuel W. Calhoun of Washington & Lee School of Law. It was good getting some exposure to see the type of material studied in a law class, and it was also good to see how intense a normal law class is.  Lastly, we had the opportunity of speaking with current law students from George Mason University and Washington & Lee Law Schools.  The panel discussion with the Law Students in my opinion was a much more informative discussion because we were given the Law students perspective on their experiences.  This conference was very informative and gave all students in attendance a look at the application process, test-taking process, and a look at how classes are conducted.  I am very fortunate that I was able to attend this conference, and I am willing to inform any HSC students of my new found information attained from the Virginia State Bar Young Lawyers Conference. - Ibn A. Salaam '12

Learning Legal Grammar
Pre-Law Society Members participated in a "trial' Grammar test that Law Schools are putting together. The 50 question test addressed many areas of grammar and law including citations, sentence structure, dangling modifiers, etc. All of these errors are taught in Hampden-Sydney Rhetoric Classes. The results of this trial test will be used to develop the official Grammar test which many law schools plan to start implementing in their curriculum. Many of our Pre-Law members found taking the test to be an insightful experience.

Moot Court Competition
This year the Pre-Law Society has elected to participate in a moot court competition at Regent Law School. The competition is sponsored by the American Collegiate Moot Court Association. Trey Price '14 has been selected as Capitan of our moot court teams. Hampden-Sydney plans to compete in the competition with 3 teams of 2 students each. Currently, the teams meet twice per week to practice oral arguments, read trial advocacy books and critique one another. The Moot Court competition will be held on November 12-13 at Regent Law.