Schulich School of Law
|Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University|
|Motto||Latin: Lex Fons Lucis|
|Type||Public Law School|
|Location||Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada|
|Colours||Black and Gold|
|Affiliations||AUCC, IAU, ACU, CIS, CUSID, AUS|
Coordinates: The Schulich School of Law is a faculty of Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. Formerly called Dalhousie Law School, it was established in 1883, making it the oldest university-affiliated common law school in the Commonwealth. It is the largest law school in Atlantic Canada and attracts students from all parts of Canada and abroad. The law school is a member of the North American Consortium on Legal Education. The school was renamed the Schulich School of Law in October 2009.
Dalhousie Law School lays claim to being "the first university-based common law school in the Commonwealth." Unlike Ontario's Osgoode Hall, which was first established in 1862 under the auspices of the Law Society of Upper Canada and subsequently shut down several times before re-opening in 1889, Dalhousie Law School sought to treat the study of law as a liberal education. It was not, as Osgoode was, an outpost for the province's professional law society where the law was "merely a technical craft." In fact, at that time the establishment of a full-time professional university common law school was so radical and the School's influence so great that legal historians cite Dalhousie Law School's founding as the beginning of the first period of common law education in Canada that laid the basis for law school as it is known today.
Dalhousie's early experiments in legal education eventually served as the foundation on which numerous common law schools based their curricula across Canada. For instance, in W. Wesley Pue's Story of Legal Education in British Columbia, which chronicles the establishment of the University of British Columbia Faculty of Law some 62 years after Dalhousie Law School first opened its doors, Pue notes that:
"Dalhousie" serves as a sort of code-word among legal educators in Canada, much as "Harvard" does in the United States of America. It invokes a vision of intellectually ambitious, rigorous, and scholarly approaches to education for the profession of law. In British Columbia, the transformation from part-time to full-time study involved the implementation of a model of legal education that was "Dalhousie" in all respects.
This rigorous training in legal education became synonymous with the tenure of Dalhousie Law School's founding Dean, Richard Chapman Weldon. In discussing the motivations that led to the establishment of a full-time common law school, Weldon described the "'legitimate ambition' of 'generous spirits who wish their country well' to build a law school 'that shall influence the intellectual life of Canada as Harvard and Yale have influenced the intellectual life of New England.'" Weldon himself demonstrated this commitment to public service time and again, both as Dean of Dalhousie Law School and as a Canadian Member of Parliament.
Based on Weldon's comments in his inaugural address at the opening of the School, it is perhaps not surprising that Dalhousie Law School has shared a storied connection with its counterpart at Harvard University. Although Dalhousie was influenced early on by the high standards of academic excellence set by Harvard Law School, it placed a decidedly unique emphasis on the subjects of public law, constitutional history, and international law, fields that were notably absent from Harvard's curriculum in the 1880s. As a result, many Dalhousie Law graduates have gone on to pursue distinguished careers in public service.
The so-called "Weldon Tradition" of commitment to unselfish public service is taught to Dalhousie law students to this day.
On September 30, 2009, Dalhousie University President Tom Traves and Dean Phillip Saunders announced that philanthropist Seymour Schulich presented a $20 million gift designated entirely for the Faculty of Law. In honour and recognition of Schulich's support, the Faculty of Law was renamed the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University. The greatest portion of the donation will create 41 new scholarships, each averaging $12,000.
The school is situated in the Weldon Law Building, on Studley Campus. The building is named after the first Dean of the school, Richard Chapman Weldon. Originally completed in 1966, it has been renovated three times, including the construction of a new library addition after a fire in 1985 destroyed the top floor of the building. The most recent refurbishment took place in 2004.
Students attending the Schulich School of Law may undertake a regular Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree or elect to concentrate their J.D. in one of four specific areas: health law, business law, marine and environmental law, and law and technology. The school is particularly well known for its scholarship in marine and environmental law.
In addition, the school has a number of combined-degree programmes: J.D./M.B.A., J.D./M.P.A. (Master of Public Administration), J.D./M.L.I.S. (Master of Library and Information Studies), and J.D./M.H.A. (Master of Health Administration).
As an accredited law school in Canada, graduates of the Juris Doctor Programme are eligible to proceed to bar admission and articling program throughout the country.
Institutes and legal aid service
The Dalhousie Legal Aid Service provides important legal services to the Halifax Regional Municipalities. It brings together law students, practising lawyers and community actors to serve the less fortunate segment of the community.
The law school is also the home of the Dalhousie Journal of Legal Studies, a student-run academic publication of student writings. It was founded in 1991 and publishes on an annual basis.
Domus Legis Society
Law student life at Dalhousie is known for its collegiality and tradition. The student-run Domus Legis Society (better known as Domus Legis) is Canada's oldest social society for law students, and has operated since 1965. It was created by Dalhousie law students “to promote good fellowship among congenial men and women at the Faculty of Law of Dalhousie University; to encourage a high standard of professional work; and to assist by every honourable means the advancement of its members.”
The Domus Legis continues to be run by students of the Schulich School of Law independent of the university administration. It receives some support from alumni, and from Canadian law firms. The society adheres to a constitution and is run by an executive composed of students from the Faculty of Law who are elected annually. Despite its independence, the Domus Legis has close customary ties to faculty, alumni, visiting justices and the Dean, who is given honorary designation as "Member #1."
Over the years, traditions have grown to include the customary signing of the Domus Legis Society's walls by law graduates and visiting dignitaries. The last of this tradition is proudly displayed in the Weldon Law building student lounge with the "Homeless Class of 2005." While the original building that housed the society was demolished in January 2004, Domus Legis' many traditions live on, including the weekly "Domus Night" which takes place every Thursday at "The Beer Market" at the Lower Deck, also known as the Middle Deck, and the annual Halloween party which attracts law students and other faculties. Efforts to acquire a new home for Domus Legis continue along with Alumni support. The name "Domus Legis" derives from Latin, meaning "House of Law."
When the executive was finishing the final cleaning-out of the house in January 2004, the slogan "usque ad mortem bibendum" was re-discovered on the back of the Domus' exterior sign. Derived from Latin, "usque ad mortem bibendum" translates as "Drink Till You Die."
Domus Legis membership is open to all students of the Schulich School of Law.
The Dalhousie Journal of Legal Studies
Established in 1991, the Dalhousie Journal of Legal Studies is a forum that promotes reflection and debate about contemporary legal issues. As one of the only publications of its kind in Canada, the Journal serves as a unique vehicle for law students to publish their work.
The DJLS is published once per academic year and maintains a broad subscription base that includes law firms, law school libraries, corporations, government departments, alumni, and legal professionals from around the globe. The Journal is also indexed in the HeinOnline database.
An entirely student-run publication, the DJLS is managed by an editorial board, and over seventy volunteers comprising students from the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie assist in production and publication.
The Weldon Times
The Weldon Times is a law student run newspaper.
- Donald L Clancy, former Justice of the Supreme Court of British Columbia and current member of the British Columbia Review Board
- Patrick H. Curran, Chief Judge of the Nova Scotia Provincial Court
- Constance Glube (1955), first female Chief Justice in Canada
- Rocky Jones (1992), political activist in the areas of human rights, race and poverty.
- Joseph Phillip Kennedy, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia
- Leslie M. Little (1961), Co-founding partner of Thorsteinssons; Justice of the federal Tax Court of Canada
- Valerie L. Marshall (1991), Puisne Justice of the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador
- Lesra Martin (1997), Canadian lawyer, renown for helping to secure the release of Rubin "Hurricane" Carter
- Valerie Miller (1985), Justice of the Tax Court of Canada
- Edmund Leslie Newcombe, former Puisne Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada
- James Palmer (1952), Founding partner of Burnet, Duckworth & Palmer
- Eugene Rossiter (1978), Associate Chief Judge, Tax Court of Canada
- James McGregor Stewart(1914), Named partner of Stewart McKelvey
- Bertha Wilson (1956), first female Puisne Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada
- R.B. Bennett (1893), former Conservative Prime Minister of Canada.
- Allan Blakeney, former New Democrat Premier of Saskatchewan
- John Buchanan, former Progressive Conservative Premier of Nova Scotia
- Alex Campbell, former Liberal Premier of Prince Edward Island
- John Crosbie, former Conservative Cabinet Minister
- Darrell Dexter, New Democrat Premier of Nova Scotia
- Joseph Atallah Ghiz, former Liberal Premier of Prince Edward Island and former Dean of Dalhousie Law School
- Danny Graham, former Liberal Party of Nova Scotia Leader
- Stewart McInnes (1961), former Conservative Cabinet Minister
- Richard Bennett Hatfield, former Progressive Conservative Premier of New Brunswick
- Michael Leir (1974), Canadian High Commissioner to Australia and lead Canadian lawyer in implementing NAFTA
- Megan Leslie (2004), New Democrat Member of Parliament
- Angus Lewis MacDonald (1921), former Premier of Nova Scotia
- Peter MacKay (1991), Conservative Cabinet Minister
- Elizabeth May, President of the Sierra Club of Canada, Leader of the Green Party of Canada, Green Party Member of Parliament
- Peter Milliken (1971), former Speaker of the Canadian House of Commons
- Brian Mulroney (failed out of first year), former Conservative Prime Minister of Canada
- Donald Oliver (1964), first black Canadian Senator
- Geoff Plant (1981), Attorney General of British Columbia
- Jim Prentice (1980), former Conservative Cabinet Minister
- Gerald Regan (1952), former Liberal Premier of Nova Scotia
- Graham Steele (1989), Minister of Finance of Nova Scotia, Member of the Nova Scotia Legislature
- Clyde Wells (1962), former Liberal Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador
- Danny Williams, former Progressive Conservative Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador
- Purdy Crawford (1955), corporate director
- Sir Graham Day (1959), former chairman of Cadbury Schweppes plc
Arts and culture
- Barrie Dunn, actor, writer, and producer best known for playing Ray in the Canadian mockumentary television program Trailer Park Boys
- Ian Hanomansing, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation journalist and anchorman
Schulich School of Law Deans
- Kim Brooks (2010-Present)
- Phillip Saunders, QC (2005-2010)
- Dawn Russell, QC (1995-1996 acting Dean, 1996-2005)
- Joseph Ghiz, QC, The Honourable (1993-1995)
- Philip Girard (1991-1993, acting Dean)
- Innis M Christie, QC (1985-1991)
- William H Charles, QC (1979-1985)
- Ronald St. John Macdonald QC, CC (1972-1979)
- Murray Fraser, QC (1971-1972, acting Dean)
- William Andrew MacKay, QC (1964-1969)
- Vincent C MacDonald, QC (1934-1950)
- Sidney Earle Smith, PC (1929-1934)
- John Erskine Read (1924-1929)
- Donald Alexander MacRae, KC (1914-1924)
- Richard Chapman Weldon, QC (1883-1914)
- LSAC - JD: Dalhousie University Schulich School of Law. 2012. Retrieved 2012-01-31.
- "Dalhousie law school receives $20M gift". CBC News. October 16, 2009.
- Schulich School of Law. 2012. Retrieved 2012-01-31.
- Waite, Peter B. The Lives of Dalhousie University: Lord Dalhousie's college. McGill-Queen's Press, 1994, p. 140.
- Bowker, W.F. and Timothy J. Christian. "Legal Education." The Canadian Encyclopedia. Historica-Dominion Institute. Retrieved 2012-01-31.
- Pue, W. Wesley. "Chapter 7: Law’s Content." The Story of Legal Education in British Columbia. UBC Law: History. 1995. Retrieved 2012-01-31.
- Bourne, C.B. Canadian Yearbook of International Law, Vol. 12. UBC Press, 1974, p. 92.
- "WELDON, Richard Chapman." Parliament of Canada. Retrieved 2012-01-31.
- Waite, Peter B. Lord of Point Grey: Larry MacKenzie of U.B.C.. UBC Press, 1987, p. 36,
- Marilyn Smulders (October 15, 2009). "Introducing the Schulich School of Law". Dal News.
- Schulich School of Law
- Sir James Dunn Law Library
- Dalhousie Legal Aid Service
- Deans of the Schulich School of Law
- Domus Legis Society
- CanLII - Canadian Legal Information Institute