Thursday, October 25, 2012
I'm very happy to report the following news about St. Thomas Law and our UST and MOJ colleague and friend Rob. Full story here.
Robert Vischer, associate dean for academic affairs and professor of law at the University of St. Thomas School of Law, will become the new dean of the school, it was announced Thursday.
He begins his term on Jan. 1, said Dr. Susan Huber, executive vice president and chief academic officer. He was selected from among a strong group of finalist candidates.
Vischer is one of the nation’s leading scholars relating lawyers’ moral formation, including faith-based formation, to their professional development and excellence – a central part of the school’s Catholic mission. Huber said Vischer’s experience on the St. Thomas faculty (since 2005) and as associate dean (since 2011) prepare him well to serve as the school’s third dean since it opened in 2001.
Among his scholarly publications are numerous articles and two Cambridge University Press books – Martin Luther King Jr. and the Morality of Legal Practice: Lessons in Love and Justice, scheduled for release next month, and Conscience and the Common Good: Reclaiming the Space Between Person and State (2010). Vischer’s honors at the School of Law include Professor of the Year (elected by students) in 2008 and 2011, and Dean’s Awards for Outstanding Scholarship in 2009 and Outstanding Teacher in 2007. At St. John’s University School of Law, where he taught before coming to UST, he was named Professor of the Year in 2005 and received the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2003.
“I am confident that Rob will lead the school to a new educational destination during this critical period of time for legal education,” Huber said. “His belief in keeping the mission of the school authentic and vibrant balances well with his concern for openly addressing the challenges facing all law schools today.”
Those challenges include a soft hiring market for new attorneys and a decrease in applications to law schools, but Vischer believes St. Thomas is well positioned to deal with critical issues.
“We have built an innovative program of legal education on our distinctive mission, which is a big draw for students,” he said. “We take professional formation seriously, equipping our graduates to excel in teamwork and building relationships, and impressing upon them the importance of developing a foundational moral commitment to serve others.” These attributes, he added, are important to employers and clients.