STCL Mock Law Class by Karla Rosales
Each spring, the LEAP Center partners with South Texas College of Law Houston to offer a mock law class. This class provides SHSU students with a “real-world” taste of law school, its burdens, and its delights.
Professor Val Ricks, a professor of Contracts, Corporations, Agency & Partnership, and Antitrust at South Texas College of Law, taught the class. He provided us with the readings for class ahead of time, which included two different contract law cases, with the idea that we would be prepared to fully engage during the class.
Professor Ricks, like most law professors, uses the Socratic Method to teach. The Socratic Method, most famously depicted in the 1973 film, “The Paper Chase,” is a method of arriving at the truth through serial questioning, with the questions designed to prompt critical thinking and to question underlying assumptions.
In addition to learning this method of teaching, the class was a language lesson of sorts. There are numerous terms that, when used in a legal context, have a different meaning than when used in everyday usage. Indeed, Professor Ricks suggested that we buy a legal dictionary prior to enrolling in law school.
The class was certainly a great opportunity for students to see what a real law class is like. As the class drew near the close, we also had the opportunity to ask Professor Ricks about the special programs that STCL excelled in. Professor Ricks informed every one of the great opportunities that attending STCL would provide because of its location, internships, clinics, and moot court program.
As a special treat, we also had a discussion with the Assistant Dean of Admissions, Alicia Cramer, who gave us plenty of helpful information and advice to help us through the admission process.
It was an important event to help students who are considering law school to learn about both the admissions process and get a sense for a STCL contracts class. In addition to answering group questions, Dean Cramer also lingered to allow individual students to ask questions and learn more about the admissions process.
Many thanks to Professor Ricks and Dean Cramer for taking time to visit SHSU and provide us with such helpful information.