Laurie A. Morin
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor of Law
B.A., State University of New York at Albany, 1979; M.P.A., Northeastern University, 1980; J.D., Northeastern University School of Law, 1983.
Professor Morin works with Professors Louise Howells and Samuel Jefferson in the Community Development Law Clinic. Law students who participate in this clinic assist low-income D.C. residents, community groups and non-profit organizations in transactional matters. Professor Morin's focus is on sustainable development that takes into account both social justice and environmental issues. For example, when developers receive tax and other financial incentives from the D.C. government, Professor Morin and her students work with residents and community groups in the surrounding areas to ensure that the development benefits the existing neighborhood by providing jobs, affordable housing, and open green spaces for the community to enjoy. The clinic also assists low-income entrepreneurs start small businesses as a means of improving their standard of living and providing needed services to the surrounding community. In addition, they assist non-profit organizations that provide needed social, cultural and educational services to low-income D.C. residents.
Professor Morin co-created and co-taught Katrina and Beyond: Disaster Prevention and Recovery, Social Justice and Government Accountability to examine legal and policy questions raised by disasters and recovery efforts. For several years, she has traveled with students to the Gulf Coast during spring break to provide pro bono legal services directly tied to Hurricane Katrina, the BP oil spill, and other disasters.
Professor Morin also periodically teaches a course in Gender, Sexuality and the Law. She is a member of the Association of American Law Schools Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Community Law Teachers, and is one of the advisors to the law school's OUTLAW student group. She is also active in the Women's Law Society, and the Mid-Atlantic People of Color Scholarship Conference.
In the Fall of 2008, Professor Morin was appointed to a two-year term as the School of Law's first Director of Faculty Development. In this capacity, Professor Morin will plan, coordinate and facilitate a comprehensive program to support the growth, development and promotion of the faculty at the School of Law. As her first initiative, Professor Morin has planned a series of faculty development luncheons to provide an opportunity for faculty members to reflect and share ideas about teaching, scholarship and service. Faculty scholarship workshops will serve two purposes: (1) to educate and inspire faculty members to produce scholarship by providing info on the "nuts and bolts" of legal scholarship, requirements for promotion and tenure, etc.; and (2) to foster a nurturing environment for faculty members to exchange ideas about writing and works-in-progress.
The faculty exchange will provide an informal forum for faculty members to share information and ideas about the work they do. Some sessions will be organized around a specific theme or topic (such as the work of a specific clinic, a sabbatical project, etc.), while others will promote a general exchange of ideas among faculty members (for example, how clinics and related doctrinal courses can mutually support student learning; the law school's involvement in the community, etc.).
The teaching and learning exchange will provide a forum for faculty members to share ideas about their classroom experience. Some will be organized around a specific topic (such as drafting and grading exams), while others will provide an open forum for discussion about a general topic (such as challenges in teaching large classes).
Professor Morin joined the faculty in 1996 to develop the Mason Enhancement Program for Academic Success, an integral part of the law school's educational program that provides resources and skills training for students from their first year through preparation for the bar exam. She has done many presentations on the scholarship of teaching and learning, and has written two law review articles that examine how to make law school teaching more effective.
Professor Morin has prior experience as the Executive Director of two non-profit organizations and has owned several small businesses. As Director of Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts in Boston, Massachusetts, she helped artists and non-profit organizations with contracts, zoning and intellectual property matters. She currently serves on the Steering Committee for the Latino Economic Development Corporation's "Buy Local" project, which encourages consumers to support their local economies and a sustainable environment.
Telephone: (202) 274-7335