Deadline: Submit Your Congrats Video for Grads
(details below)

Save the Date: College of Law Convocation
In less than a month, we will welcome the newest law graduates to our alumni family! In anticipation of that moment, today's edition of Letter of the Law features 2021 SJD graduates Benedict Maige Nchalla and Patricia Kisinda. And, stay tuned for a run-down of College of Law convocation details in next week's edition.

Until the footnotes,
Husband-and-Wife SJD Students Benedict Maige Nchalla and Patricia Kisinda Graduate Together
For Benedict Maige Nchalla and Patricia Kisinda, studying at University of Arizona Law is a family matter. The husband-and-wife duo from Tanzania are graduating together this year from the Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Doctor of Juridical Studies (SJD) program.

Benedict began the program first, and after visiting him in Tucson, Patricia decided to join him, making the move from Tanzania and bringing along their two children, Gregory and Giovanni-Anthony. She says,
"It was a great moment, a family union. The saguaros warmly welcomed us, and we fell in love with the Sonoran Desert." 
Being in the SJD program together proved to be important for each individual's success. Patricia shares,
"Despite our demanding parental responsibilities, we were able to encourage each other in our studies and overcome many challenges, particularly those associated with the outbreak of COVID-19."
Patricia, a senior resident magistrate at the Judiciary of Tanzania with extended jurisdiction, adjudicating certain offences under Tanzania High Court's jurisdiction, joined the SJD program to advance her legal career and fill a gap in the courts. She says,

"Tanzania experiences shortage of female jurists who have expertise in international human rights issues. The major reason that made me want to pursue this degree was to be an expert of international human rights law, particularly on protection of children's rights, and I found Arizona Law to be the proper place for that."
Benedict's focus was on international investment law and human rights. Prior to his time at Arizona Law, he was a lecturer and a dean of the faculty of law at Tumaini University Makumira in Arusha, Tanzania, a practicing attorney of the High Court of Tanzania, and listed legal counsel of the African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights. 
He hit the ground running upon arrival in Tucson, digging in with his classes and adjusting to the Socratic method, saying,
"I really enjoyed the first year in residency of my program, especially Professor Rebecca Tsosie's Federal Indian Law class, the [International Human Rights Advocacy Workshop] clinic under Professors Robert Williams and Seanna Howard, and Professor Sergio Puig's International Investment Law and Arbitration class."
Benedict says his time in the International Human Rights Advocacy Workshop gave him the opportunity to experience two hallmarks of an Arizona Law education: practical experience and working with a diverse group of students from different backgrounds.
Patricia also says she most enjoyed the moments in law school when she was connecting with people from around the world, especially in her first year, when she was able to do so in person, reflecting,
"This was the time when I met and got to know people from different parts of the world, sharing their intellectual experiences."
Other standout experiences for Kisinda include the Tribal Justice Clinic, the International Human Rights Advocacy Workshop, and a cherished visit to the Tohono O'odham Court and Museum.
"I was honored to speak with the Judges of Tohono O'odham Court and to see the historical background of the reservation as well as the culture of Tohono people."
After graduation, Benedict and Patricia will return to Tanzania. Benedict will continue with his teaching career at Tumaini University Makumira and law practice and wants to establish a consultancy firm offering services on corporate social responsibility and responsible investment:
"I will impart the knowledge acquired in the program to 'lawyers in the making' and other stakeholders by introducing a course on business and human rights with a particular focus on indigenous peoples' rights."
Patricia will resume her duties in the Judiciary of Tanzania, now with added qualifications and expertise in children's rights and gender equality. She says,
"I anticipate protecting and interpreting the law to promote and protect female children's welfare whenever exercising my judicial functions, but without being biased. I will also inevitably be a resource in seminars and training programs on related matters conducted within the Judiciary of Tanzania and the entire legal fraternity."
Benedict says they now have the tools to more effectively advocate for the causes they care about, and concludes,
"I am proud of being part of the world-class SJD IPLP program. The program has equipped me to engage in the fight for social justice, particularly indigenous peoples' rights everywhere and anywhere."

Around the College

Share Your Congrats with the Class of '21

Alumni, friends, faculty, and staff of the College of Law are invited to participate in a compilation of video congratulations messages for the Class of 2021!
The University of Arizona is collecting video congratulations messages for the entire UA Class of 2021, and the College of Law would like to use your videos in the pre-show for our own convocation ceremony. 
Add your own video! The deadline for submission is April 30.

Step 1: Use your phone to record a HORIZONTAL congratulations or thank you message for the Class of 2021 graduation. 

Step 2: Upload an .mp4 or an .mov file (most cameras use these formats) here:
Step 3: Please also send a copy of your submission via email to Nancy Stanley at nstanley@arizona.edu
and Mary Steed at marywsteed@arizona.edu
Thank you for your participation and your support of our graduating law students!

Contribute to the 2021 Class Gift 

Library Faculty Chosen for Fellowships
The two newest members of the Daniel F. Cracchiolo Law Library team have hit the ground running, bringing fresh ideas, energy, and enthusiasm to the library and the College of Law. 
Cas Laskowski
Marcelo Rodriguez

Cas Laskowski, Technology & Empirical Services Librarian, has been accepted to the first IDEA Institute on Artificial Intelligence, a one-week intensive designed to train and develop AI leaders in the library and information professions. The curricula teaches how to design, develop, evaluate, and implement AI solutions to their workplace. As part of the inaugural cohort of fellows, Cas will help build a collaborative network to share ideas, gather advice, and mentor future leaders.
Marcelo Rodriguez, Librarian for Foreign, Comparative & International Law, has been accepted as one of eight 2021-2022 HSI Fellows here at the University of Arizona. The Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) Fellows Program serves to strategically further the scope and depth of work around the designation of the University of Arizona as an HSI institution. The program provides a venue for community-building and career development for faculty and staff through a project-based leadership experience, mentoring and coaching, and a series of targeted workshops. Marcelo shares:
"I'm honored to be part of this distinguished group of fellows, and I value the trust Dr. Franco and her team have put in me to advance the goals of a Hispanic serving institution, such as the University of Arizona. I couldn't have asked for a more meaningful way to contribute to projects and initiatives so dear to me, and truly make a difference. I'm humbled, inspired, and ready to embark upon this journey."

According to Teresa Miguel-Stearns, Associate Dean and Director of the Law Library, both of these intensive programs are highly competitive and will provide Cas and Marcelo with new tools to bring back to the library and the college.

"I'm thrilled that Marcelo and Cas are already making a difference here at the Law Library, the College of Law, and the University more broadly. Their respective opportunities to participate in these programs will only enhance the skill and energy they bring to their work, and are a sign of the larger impact they will make during their time with us."

In the News

Tucson.com, professor Tammi Walker to speak with team about social justice and the Chauvin verdict

NEW RESOURCE Monthly "For the Record" newsletter featuring faculty scholarship, news, and special events.

Congratulations to Dr. Patricia Kisinda and Dr. Benedict Maige Nchalla for their deep engagement and success here, and their leadership in the judiciary, legal education, the legal profession, and society in their home country of Tanzania.
Let me extend my congratulations and thanks to Gregory and Giovanni-Anthony. Perhaps we can tempt you to return to Tucson for college or law school, a few years down the road?
Our families and closest friends -- our children, partners, parents, siblings -- are a critical part of the support, encouragement and love that makes it possible earn a law degree. And that is all the more true when two degrees -- two doctorates! -- are the goal.
Dr. Dad. Dr. Mum. And two young honorary graduates whose love is, always, the best medicine. 


Marc Signature


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