Jon Campisi Mar. 24, 2014, 7:53am


Temple University’s law school announced late last week that it has been

granted a charter to establish a chapter of the Order of the Coif, which is a prestigious honor society comprised of law schools nationwide, and one that has been existence for more than 100 years.

Only universities whose law school faculties have demonstrated, through teaching and scholarship, a “record of encouraging excellence among their students, fostering a spirit of careful study, and supporting their students’ pursuit of high quality scholarship” are allowed to form a local chapter, according to Temple’s Beasley School of Law, which is located in Philadelphia.

“I’m extraordinarily pleased by this recognition for Temple Law School,” Dean JoAnne Epps said in a statement. “Membership in the Order of the Coif is a reflection of our ongoing commitment to outstanding scholarship by our faculty and students alike.

“I really couldn’t be more proud.”

Membership in the Order of Coif is what Temple calls a “coveted mark of distinction” that demonstrates notable scholarly or professional accomplishment.

In forming a local chapter, law school students at Temple who graduate in the top 10 percent of their class would be invited to become full-fledged members of the order.

The Order of the Coif was formed in the United States in 1902 as a national legal education honor society.

It takes its name from the wigs that distinguished lawyers, particularly in England, wore on their heads.

Today, the order recognizes individuals who have set themselves apart in a very competitive field, Epps, the law school dean, wrote in a blog entry last week.

“I’m also pleased about Temple’s membership in the Order because I think it is an affirmation of our core philosophy that academic scholarship and experiential learning share a deeply reciprocal relationship,” Epps wrote. “This philosophy has informed many of our most successful initiatives, from our theory-and-practice symposium series to our award-winning integrated trial advocacy and integrated transactional programs.

“It’s not just that both are necessary for a legal education to be complete,” Epps continued. “It’s that they need each other to reach their full potential in the practice of law.”

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