Department: Bldg. 52, Rm. 414
Title: Asst. Director, Academic Success & Bar Programs
Phone: (202) 274-7443
B.A., Psychology/Sociology, UCLA; J.D., UCLA Law School; Member, California State Bar
"As the first lawyer in my family, not only am I passionate about making a legal education more accessible through Academic Support, I also possess a sense of obligation for doing so. I am honored to serve at UDC; its Academic Success Program is a testament to the law school's commitment of serving the needs of diverse students, and ensuring that the next cadre of lawyers is reflective of the communities we serve."
Professor Barraza directs the Academic Success Program for the Evening Division. The Academic Success Program provides resources and skills training for students from their first year through preparation for the bar exam. In that capacity, Professor Barraza teaches in the summer program for select incoming 1L students, conducts academic skills workshops, and teaches Legal Reasoning I and II.
Professor Barraza brings valuable research, curriculum development, and teaching experience to the law school’s Academic Success Program. During his two year post-doctoral fellowship at Southwestern Law School, he researched innovations in legal pedagogy in efforts to make legal education more accessible to non-traditional students. Professor Barraza specializes in addressing the unique needs of students with children or dependant adults, students that work, older/wiser students, English-as-second language (ESL) learners, and students with accommodations. As a researcher, he enjoys reminding students that the J.D. is a doctorate degree by challenging them to pursue legal scholarship and encouraging them to take an active role in the development of their legal education.
Professor Barraza served for several years as a Research Associate & Legislative Attorney for the UCLA Center for Minority Health Disparities, where he analyzed laws and public policies impacting graduate-level and post-doc training of minority physicians and allied health professionals.
While a law student at UCLA, Professor Barraza served as the Chief Managing Editor of the Chicano/Latino Law Review, where he trained a staff of 15 Articles Editors to conduct legal research and edit scholarly work, and was Managing Editor of the Dukeminier Awards Journal, the first legal journal specifically devoted to articles on sexual orientation and gender identity law. He also focused on expanding his teaching skills to meet the needs of diverse students. As a Teaching Fellow for the law school, he developed the curriculum for a study skills and exam preparedness course. He was also selected as a Teaching Associate for the UCLA LGBT Studies Department, where he lectured on critical race theory and sexual orientation law. As a Street Law Instructor, he taught common legal issues to inner-city high school students. He also chaired the People of Color Law School Admissions Conference, where he assisted non-traditional pre-law students with the challenge of successfully applying to law schools.
Before entering law school, Professor Barraza worked as a Policy Advocate in Washington, D.C., and was a Kaiser Family Foundation Health Policy Fellow in Congresswoman Hilda Solis’ office.