"Is This Someone I Would Consider Hiring?"

Through the Admission Interview Program, alumni help Vanderbilt's Admissions team identify prospective students who are a good fit.

by Grace Renshaw
Waylon Bryson, Peter Coulson, Eric Schoppe, Lauren Smith, and Monroe Solomon

When Vanderbilt Law School launched its Admission Interview Program in fall 2007, one of the first requests the Admissions Office fielded was from a prospective student in Seoul, Korea. "He assumed he'd need to do the interview on Skype," Dean of Admissions Todd Morton said. "I was delighted we were able to say, 'We have an alumni interviewer in Seoul, and we can set you up with an in-person interview.'"

In the four years since the program's launch, the number of admitted students who accept Vanderbilt's offer of admission who were interviewed during the admission process has increased steadily. A third of the Class of 2014—64 students—were interviewed by a Vanderbilt Law graduate. Morton believes that...

On the Inside Track

Seven Vanderbilt Law alumni who have served or are serving as their company's general counsel discuss the challenges of bearing the ultimate responsibility for how their company's legal matters are handled, advising senior executives and boards of directors, and dealing with matters as mundane as 401(k) loans, as serious as a government investigation, and as exhilarating as an initial public offering.

The Mind, Made Up

Based at Vanderbilt Law School, the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Law and Neuroscience Explores Brain Activity Relevant to Law.

Owen Jones

During the seven years that Vanderbilt Law Professor Owen Jones has focused on the implications of neuroscience on law—specifically the implications of brain imaging technologies—the field of study has made the transition from a futuristic, even exotic, field of inquiry into mainstream debates. A recent case in point: Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association, a 7-2 Supreme Court decision handed down in June 2011 that invalidated a California law banning the sale of violent video games to children. Arguing in dissent that the Court should instead defer to the California legislature's conclusion that violent video games were likely to harm children, Justice Stephen G. Breyer noted that "[c]utting-edge neuroscience has shown that virtual violence in video game playing results in those neural patterns that are considered characteristic for aggressive cognition and behavior."

But Jones, who holds the New York Alumni Chancellor's Chair as well as faculty appointments in Vanderbilt's biology department and its neuroscience program, has had little time to reflect on...

Vanderbilt's New Faculty

Looking for the Win-Win: Advocating policies that "harmonize" environmental and economic benefits

J.B. Ruhl, David Daniels Allen Distinguished Chair in Law

by Grace Renshaw J.B. Ruhl

J.B. Ruhl is frankly baffled that many Americans deny that climate change is occurring and/or that the world's burgeoning human population has played a role in increasing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. "You have to not believe in chemistry to not accept what's happening to the climate or just not accept the theory of the earth's biosphere—that carbon dioxide is what allowed life to occur, but that you can have too much of it," he said. "We need to adapt to the climate change that we can't avoid, and there's a lot to be debated about what we should do about it."

Ruhl, who joined Vanderbilt's law faculty in summer 2011 as the David Daniels Allen Distinguished Chair in Law, suspects that much climate change skepticism is motivated more by...

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