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The Journal of Civil Rights and Economic Development Gives Voice to Important Legal Issues of the Day

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Journal of Civil Rights and Economic Development (JCRED)—the student-run journal of The Ronald H. Brown Center for Civil Rights and Economic Development—provides a written forum for exploring and commenting on pressing issues of racial, social, and economic justice. 

JCRED’s current issues highlight the journal’s commitment to offering quality content that engages readers in the research, scholarship, and theory that inform public dialogue on important legal issues of the day. The Summer 2013 issue opens with a transcript of the talk given by Hon. Jonathan Lippman, Chief Judge of the State of New York and Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals, at the Law School’s 2013 commencement exercises.

With a career in the New York court system spanning four decades, Judge Lippman has helped shape Court of Appeals jurisprudence, with notable decisions addressing legal services for the poor, juvenile justice, indigent criminal defense services, wrongful convictions, and the rise in foreclosure cases in the courts. Recognizing the national shortage of legal services for the poor and disenfranchised, Judge Lippman crafted the country’s first state rule mandating that law students perform 50 hours of uncompensated pro bono work in service to New York’s needy as a prerequisite to their admission to the bar. In his remarks to the St. John’s Law graduates, Judge Lippman noted: “Our profession has always had a broader meaning and a higher purpose, one defined by the pursuit of justice and the desire to be of service to others.”

JCRED’s Fall 2013 issue shares articles authored by participants in the Law School’s recent symposium on: “Opening Doors: Making Diversity Matter in Law School Admissions.” The selections include an article by Robert Morse, director of data research for U.S. News & World Report, titled “U.S. News Views on Including Diversity in Our Best Law Schools Ranking.” Other articles spotlight the role law schools play in ensuring that the legal profession is diverse and representative of the rich fabric of our society. “Working on JCRED’s two current issues was a tremendous experience,” said Editor-in-Chief Enkelena Gjuka ‘14. “The pieces are interesting, well written, and provide unique perspectives on a number of timely issues surrounding civil rights, social justice, and economic development. Immersing in the research and scholarship of such well-known legal scholars offers insight into the law that enhances what I learn in the classroom at St. John’s.”

Last summer, JCRED expanded its reach by launching an online companion to its print journal. The new website shares news and information about JCRED’s programs and initiatives. It also publishes student notes on a range of topics related to racial, social, and economic justice. Many of these works were originally published in abbreviated form as Op-Ed pieces, as part of an annual series hosted at JURIST. "The new website gives JCRED members a dynamic platform for sharing insights on topics they're very passionate about,” said Michael Zhang ’14, who developed the site as JCRED’s Articles & Executive Blog Editor. “It also allows us to highlights events and activities JCRED sponsors throughout the academic year. For example, along with others from St. John’s, we recently hosted a two-day symposium on Title VII at 50, presented in collaboration with NYU Law. It was a wonderful event that reflected the work JCRED does to foster vital conversation on justice and equality.”