Law Students Win National, Regional Honors

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Three New England Law | Boston students win national, regional honors

New England Law | Boston: Three New England Law | Boston students, Justin Kesselman ’13, Anna Rupani ’13, and Michael Varone ’13, have been honored for their knowledge of trusts and estate law, public service to the law school and broader communities, and the ethical practice of law, respectively.

Kesselman took first place in the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel’s (ACTEC) national writing competition. ACTEC is the most prestigious trusts and estates organization in the country for both practitioners and academics, according to New England Law Professor Kent Schenkel, who teaches Estate and Gift Tax; Estate Planning; and Wills, Estates, and Trusts.

The competition, open to all law students in the country, was created by ACTEC’s Legal Education Committee, which consists of full-time and adjunct law school professors who teach in the area of trusts and estates. Kesselman received a $5,000 prize, and his winning paper will be published in an upcoming edition of the ACTEC Law Journal.

Rupani received the Reginald Lindsay Public Service Law Book Award at the Massachusetts Black Lawyers Association’s (MBLA) annual gala. The award recognized her service to the law school community and work with high school students as part of New England Law | Boston’s Legal Scholar Mentorship Program.

The MBLA award seeks to support the development of law students of color who, like Judge Lindsay, have overcome adversity to use their outstanding academic ability and skills in public service.

As co-president of the Minority Students Association for the past two years, Rupani has also been a member of all of the law school’s minority student organizations, in addition to the International Law Society.

Varone’s award, which includes a $1,000 scholarship, was presented at the ninth annual Law Student Ethics Awards Dinner. The keynote presentation was made by former U.S. Representative Barney Frank.

“Michael Varone’s work in his clinical courses at New England Law | Boston illustrates his commitment to ethics and professionalism as a student attorney,” commented Professor Russell Engler, who directs the school’s clinical programs. The nomination was made by the Center for Law and Social Responsibility, whose co-director, Professor David Siegel, accompanied Varone at the awards ceremony.

Varone earned an “outstanding” rating for his work on domestic relations and social security cases at the law school’s in-house Public Interest Law Clinic in the fall of 2011. In the area of Professional Practices and Sensitivity to Ethical Issues, his supervisor, Professor Caryn Mitchell-Munevar, noted that he “was extremely conscious of ethical issues that arose in his cases. When difficult situations arose… Mr. Varone did a great job [of] confronting the situation but not alienating his client or opposing party.”

New England Law students are encouraged to explore areas of interest while still in school through clinical programs, internships, externships, clerkships, and other experiential learning opportunities.

“I think the school’s clinical programs offer students great opportunities to work with diverse populations and help them get through real problems,” Varone said. “I’ve learned a lot from those experiences, and I hope to work in the criminal justice system when I graduate.”

New England Law | Boston, located in the heart of Boston’s Back Bay, prides itself on a powerful combination of academic excellence and community engagement and a focus on what prospective students can bring to the school’s dynamic community of thinkers and doers. Founded in 1908 as the only law school established exclusively for the education of women but coeducational since 1938, New England Law students learn through experience, with a robust clinical program and practical learning curriculum. With one-on-one assistance from the Office of Career Services, New England Law graduates are prepared to enter the workforce upon graduation. New England Law is one of only two institutions in Boston to offer an evening law school program. New England Law offers a generous financial aid program.

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Patrick Collins
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