A Message from the Dean
A 1L Odyssey
Alumni Fill Halls of Academe
New LAS President Hopes to Increase Outreach to Alumni
Levy Scholars Program Provides 'Mark of Distinction' for Top Students
Tanenbaum Hall Turns 10
Judge Rosenn Inspires A Following Among Former Clerks
The Brief
The Board of Overseers
Faculty News & Publications
Alumni Briefs
In Memoriam
A 1L Odyssey 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8


"My first time called upon in Law School was in Torts very early in my law school career. As I remember, the class was just after lunch in one of the large lecture halls. People always walked in a little late and generally talking loudly. The professor had the habit of beginning by speaking softly in a conversational voice until the class would quiet down. My first time called upon was one of those noisy starts. As we quieted down, I heard the professor say “So Mr. Ellman, what’s the difference between the plaintiff and the defendant?” It seemed like a simple and strange question, but being a new student I gave a the only answer I could think of. That was that the plaintiff brought the action and the defendant defended. At that point, every one looked at me like I was making a joke or worse was an idiot. Luckily, the student next to me asked whether the Professor had asked the question with respect to a specific case, because we couldn’t hear her. When the Professor said that she was in fact referring to a specific case, I felt like hugging my classmate for saving me. Then the Professor said that the case was Tedla v. Ellman (my name!). At that point, I unfortunately had to respond that I wasn’t prepared for the case. Definitely, not my proudest moment. I did learn a very important lesson, however. When the question doesn’t make sense, ask to hear it again and always prepare when your name is one of the parties in the case.” – MARK ELLMAN L’83

"It was Parents & Partners Day in early October. The sections were combined and Professor Summers introduced the concepts of offer and acceptance. The specific issue – whether an acceptance becomes effective at the time it is mailed – was discussed in a seminal case authored by the New York Court of Appeals in 1929. As I later learned, this was perhaps the greatest collection of jurists to ever sit on the same court. Professor Summers discussed the facts of the case and then asked me if the Court got it right. Since my father, who graduated from the Law School in 1963, was present in the back of the classroom, my first response was “can the other Mr. Rotko answer that question.” Professor Summers politely put the question to me again and I replied that the Court was, in fact, wrong. Professor Summers then asked if I was telling the class that that the greatest State court ever assembled, a Court that included Justices Cardozo, Pound, Lehman and Field, among others, did not get it right. Now shaking, I repeated that the Court did not get it right. After a brief pause, he moved on to the next issue and another unsuspecting student whose parents were also in the room. To this day, in nearly ten years of practice, this issue has yet to come up. But should it, I will be ready or I will call my father.” THOMAS ROTKO L94

Previous Page Read Robert H. Miller's Law School Tips