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Happy Day for Recent Grads

Thursday, Dec 8, 2011

Bar admission ceremony marks final chapter on campus

Story and photos by Maria Iacobo

With several hundred family and friends looking on, 105 recent USC Law graduates completed a journey that began nearly three years earlier.  Raising their right hands, the graduates were sworn in to the state and federal bars during the annual Bar Admissions ceremony. This year, a record 91 percent of USC Law graduates passed the bar examination on their initial attempt.

Dean Robert K. Rasmussen welcomed the new lawyers back to campus, telling them, “Passing the bar is the first step in your career as a lawyer.  As you advance in our profession you will be aided by USC law alumni.  Our alumni practice law at the highest levels and take the time to assist young alumni.  This is a bond that stretches across generations.”

Before being sworn in to the state bar by the Honorable Sally Meloch ’87, the Los Angeles Superior Court judge congratulated the new lawyers and offered them some advice, emphasizing the value of maintaining a good reputation.

 “Always keep in mind that you need a good reputation to succeed,” Meloch said.  “Be aware that what you do in a courtroom has a tremendous impact.”  

Meloch also encouraged the alumni to explore a variety of legal professions during their career.  Meloch started her career as an associate at a large downtown law firm and found “it was not to my liking.”  She spent the next 11 years as an assistant U.S. attorney for the Department of Justice before being appointed to the Superior Court in 2010 by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. 

Judge Sally Meloch '87
Judge Jean Rosenbluth '93

The Honorable Jean Rosenbluth ’93, a United States magistrate for the Central District of California, administered the oath to the new attorneys for admission to the U.S. District Court Central District of California and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.  Rosenbluth is the former director of USC Law’s legal writing program, having left to join the bench in August.

 “On this day, I am nothing but completely proud of all of you and so honored that our dean asked me to be here,” said Rosenbluth.  “I have one overarching piece of advice for you and that is to be humble.”

While many of the graduates will practice law in Los Angeles, others returned from positions elsewhere, including New York and San Francisco, to participate in the ceremony.

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