Monterey College of Law Graduates Successful on July 2008 California Bar Exam

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Monterey College of Law announced nine new lawyers from the July 2008 California Bar Exam results released Friday, November 21. The class of 2008 has three new lawyers; Gina Occhipinti, Maria Palazzolo, and Stephen Pribula who join four classmates who passed the previous February bar exam. Six MCL graduates from previous classes also passed the exam; Regina Beeson, Daniel Bozzo, Sharon Christensen, Caroline Forbes, Jeremy Peck, and Magnolia Zarraga.

Monterey College of Law announced nine new lawyers from the July 2008 California Bar Exam results released this past Friday. The class of 2008 has three new lawyers; Gina Occhipinti, Maria Palazzolo, and Stephen Pribula who join four classmates who passed the previous February bar exam. Six MCL graduates from previous classes also passed the exam; Regina Beeson, Daniel Bozzo, Sharon Christensen, Caroline Forbes, Jeremy Peck, and Magnolia Zarraga.

Mitch Winick, Dean of MCL, stated, "We are very proud of our nine new lawyers. Passing the California bar exam is one of the highest professional achievements because it is such a difficult exam." Recognized as the hardest bar exam in the country, the State Bar of California reported a 61.7% overall pass rate for all applicants for the 2008 July Bar exam.

"The MCL class of 2008 has achieved a 50% pass rate for the February and July bar exams, which is very competitive for a state-accredited law school," according to Dean of Admissions Wendy LaRiviere. "Of course there is a friendly competition between the class of 2008 and the class of 2007," added Winick. The class of 2007 also added three new lawyers based on the July results, raising their overall pass rate to 71%. "I fully expect similar results from the class of 2008 once they get their chance to repeat the exam during the next year," said Winick. "With so many of our graduates working full-time, it is very common for MCL graduates to take the bar exam more than one time. The fact that we had six successful repeat-takers this time is a testament to quality of our program and the dedication and persistence of our graduates," said Winick.

MCL is planning a public swearing-in ceremony at 4:00 p.m., Thursday, December 4, 2008 at the Watsonville Courthouse, 1 Second Street, Watsonville, CA 95076. The law school also welcomes local graduates of other law schools who passed the bar and who would like to participate in the swearing-in ceremony. Contact Amy Waynar at the law school (831) 582-4000 or awaynar(at)montereylaw.edu for information.

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Mitchel Winick


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