"I am proud that Regent is routinely ranked as one of the top military-friendly universities in the country," said RSG dean, Dr. Eric Patterson. "I take this seriously because I am an officer in the Air National Guard."
The concert was held in the Main Theatre of the Performing Arts Center before several hundred members of the Regent and Hampton Roads communities and was developed to help celebrate RSG's 30th anniversary and affirm the university's commitment to serving those who serve their country.
"Armed Forces Day is a forgotten, but important, holiday," Patterson added. "Regent should be leading Virginia Beach in celebrating this important day on an annual basis, and that is our intent moving forward."
The concert featured patriotic and Americana music, both classic and contemporary. "The TRADOC Band Commander and I both think the concert went extraordinarily well," said the band's Executive Officer and Associate Bandmaster, First Lieutenant Silas Huff. "We heard remarkable feedback from audience members who were moved and found the performance very stirring."
The TRADOC Band's Armed Forces Day program honors service members past and present with special consideration for current events and the anniversaries of conflicts throughout history in its song selection. Each composition is chosen to tell a chapter of the United States Armed Forces story.
"Part of the mission of Army Bands (when we're not playing ceremonies, or concerts for Army families at home and abroad) is to foster the support of our citizens and promote our national interests," said Huff. "The TRADOC Band's concerts in Hampton Roads honor servicemen and women from today and the past, creating a direct link between the general public and the military."
For the program at Regent, the band played John Williams' "Midway March," originally composed for a film about the most important battle of the Pacific Campaign in World War II. Staff Sergeant Holly Schultz performed "Gabriel's Oboe," accompanied by video footage of wounded warriors. "The video was a tribute to their sacrifices and struggles," Huff said.
Samuel Hazo's "Olympiada," written to capture the intense glory and pain only the Olympic Games can inspire, was also featured. Sergeant Daniel Puls sang "Here's to the Heroes," accompanied by images of veterans from WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf War, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
"Our favorite part of our concerts is when we perform the Armed Forces Medley," Huff reported. "We don't perform it at every concert, but we perform it often, and we enjoy acknowledging the families members as they hear their service song played. ...In Virginia Beach, it's fun when the Navy song starts—it seems like half the audience members jump to their feet.
The U.S. Army TRADOC Band is led by Major Leo Peňa and is based at nearby Joint Base Langley-Eustis.
Learn more about Regent's Office of Military & Veterans Affairs.
By Amanda Morad
Professor James Duane was interviewed on MSNBC Thursday, May 23, regarding whether or not IRS official Lois Learner should be permitted to plead the Fifth Amendment in the congressional investigation. Duane's comments regarding the Fifth Amendment were also included in this Wednesday, May 22, online edition of New York Magazine, and articles in The Week , Politico and Yahoo! News on Thursday, May 23.
Learn more about Professor Duane.
"When I was a kid, I wanted to be a Broadway star," said Grace Pandithurai, the 2013 recipient of the Regent University Alumni Association's Alumnus of the Year award. Pandithurai, '10 (Law) (shown right, accepting award from Founder and Chancellor Dr. M.G. "Pat" Robertson) always longed to star in Elton John's musical adaptation of Aida. However, her parents—who raised Pandithurai in a traditional Indian home—had different plans
"My dad looked at me and said, 'Indian people don't do this; you can be a lawyer, a doctor or a computer scientist,'" said Pandithurai.
Pandithurai's father would remind her of the hardships, bribery and corruption he witnessed in his homeland. He had a special interest in the United States' legal system, which—despite Pandithurai's dreams of Broadway—instilled within her a love of pursuing law and justice.
"Since [my father] was so passionate, I became passionate," said Pandithurai.
However, Pandithurai's passion for music is a part of her day-to-day working environment as the Assistant District Attorney in Wichita Falls, Texas. There she is charged with the emotionally-challenging work as a prosecutor, representing children who are victims of sexual assault.
"I listen to a lot of worship music when I'm prepping cases," said Pandithurai. "And I belt it out at the top of my lungs."
Pandithurai began working for the state of Texas two years ago, and immediately began putting the values of servant leadership and ethics she learned at Regent into practice. In the midst of what she considers the "most heart-wrenching job" she's ever had, it's Pandithurai's Christian faith that holds her together.
Day-by-day, she confronts sexual predators and encourages her young—too young—clients to share their story. Her role in her clients' lives is synonymous with "pulling out the thorn" from the calloused wounds of rape victims, Pandithurai explained.
"When you pull the thorn out of your hand, there's a little hole—and it hurts for a little bit, but once it's gone, it's gone," said Pandithurai. "You'll have a scar, but the pain isn't there."
Though it may initially hurt to agitate a victim's sense of stability from the trauma of assault, according to Pandithurai, telling the truth is the first step of recovering and healing.
"I think telling the truth gives the victim a little bit of power back, because they realize they're probably preventing that from happening to somebody else," said Pandithurai. "And I want them to know that they have someone who is going to fight tooth-and-nail to make sure that they get justice."
Pandithurai reminds herself of the men who were tenacious in the pursuit of taking their paralyzed friend to the feet of Jesus in the Gospel of Luke. Just as they stopped short of nothing to ensure their friend had the opportunity to be healed, Pandihurai does all that she can to infuse hope into the victims she comes in contact with.
"We all need to live our lives with that kind of passion and servant mindset that we're willing to do whatever it takes to get others to the feet of Jesus," said Pandithurai. "This is the life I want to live, not just professionally, but personally."
Learn more about Regent University Alumni Association.
By Brett Wilson
Photo courtesy of Alex Perry
McDonnell, a former lieutenant colonel in the United States Army and former Attorney General of Virginia, spoke candidly about the qualifications of a successful leader before a crowd of 500 at the Chesapeake Conference Center.
"Most of what I can tell you about leadership I've learned the hard way," McDonnell said. "It's one thing to know principles in your heart, but to have them tested is another thing entirely."
McDonnell used his breadth of personal experiences to outline the keys to leading successfully. "First, if you're going to enter leadership, you have to know what you believe in," he said. "Storms of life will always come, and you will be tested. You have to be able to stand firm in what you believe."
Second, "surrounding yourself with good people is critically important. I surround myself with outstanding support," McDonnell said, praising his staff members and advisors. "But leaders also must have the wisdom to let them do their jobs. Effort is nice, but results matter. Equip your people; then let them do what you've asked them to do in order to get results."
Quoting Jim Collins' research of management published in the book "Good to Great," McDonnell then differentiated between top-tier leaders and mediocre leaders. "The defining characteristic of the Level 5 leader was the 'X factor': humility."
This is where the concept of servant leadership is born out. "Great leaders are ambitious and driven to get things done, but not for themselves," McDonnell explained. "They do it for the organization and to move others forward."
The Bible affirms this idea in the gospel of Matthew with the words of Jesus: "the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve" (20:28).
"So much of servant leadership boils down to humility," McDonnell said, referencing President Reagan's leadership role in the non-violent fall of the Iron Curtain as an example. "It's amazing what you can get done when you don't care who gets the credit."
Next, McDonnell emphasized the importance of vision and measurement. "My team sets out a strategic plan, and then we have regular meetings to inspect and measure results," he explained.
He also encouraged leaders to keep their focus. "There's only so much you can do well," he said, citing his initial gubernatorial campaign plan with 55 points on it. The ultimate plan was pared down to three points and one overarching theme: "Bob's for Jobs." So far, McDonnell has made good on that campaign, as Virginia has one of the lowest unemployment rates east of the Mississippi River.
Lastly, McDonnell expounded upon the importance of having people get on board with the vision. "You might have the best ideas in the world, but it doesn't matter if you don't have 51 percent of the vote to carry them out. You have to communicate the vision and get people on board."
All of his accomplishments as governor, from the recently passed transportation bill to the budgetary surplus the state has maintained during his term, "have been made possible by people working together to get things done," he concluded.
McDonnell left the audience with reflections on America's leadership through history and thoughts on his favorite U.S. president, George Washington. "Washington could have been king, but he willingly walked away from power for the good of the nation," he said. "These values that make America the greatest nation in the world are what have brought us so much prosperity. If we will follow the admonitions of our forefathers, we will continue to be the greatest nation in the world."
Visit the ELS website for more information about upcoming speakers.
By Amanda Morad
Photo by Alex Perry
Pass rates for all Virginia Bar Exam applicants and for law schools in Virginia:
First-time Takers Percentage
|All Virginia Bar Exam Applicants|
|Virginia Law Schools:|
|Appalachian School of Law|
|College of William and Mary|
|George Mason University|
|University of Richmond|
|University of Virginia|
|Washington and Lee University|
"We are incredibly proud of Darius and the work he has done benefiting the local community," said Jeffrey Brauch, dean of Regent Law. "Regent Law's Community Service Day has been a tremendous success. Non-profit organizations across Hampton Roads have benefited from these volunteer services, and, as a group, volunteers have performed close to 2,000 hours of community service since the beginning of the program."
The Walter E. Hoffman Community Service Award recognizes outstanding hands-on service to the community by a member of the Bar Association who is under 40 years of age. The award, named for the late jurist who served as a role model and mentor for lawyers in the Hampton Roads community, is distributed to only two recipients a year.
"I appreciate the honor," said Davenport. "And now, this award allows us to take the community service we do in the law school and give it a bigger platform." In 2009, Davenport inaugurated Regent Law's annual Community Service Day, a joint volunteer effort of Regent Law students, faculty, staff, and members of the local bar association, providing non-legal services to non-profit organizations across Hampton Roads.
"One of the reasons the Community Service Day is important to Regent is because it's a powerful outreach tool for the law school," said Davenport. "I think lawyers have a certain perception in the local community, and this outreach allows everyone to see us as the servants that lawyers truly are."
The annual event coincides with incoming Regent Law students' orientation activities. Last August, 154 volunteers completed more than 600 hours of community service in one day at locations including Union Mission, Virginia Beach Habitat for Humanity, Food Bank of Southeastern Virginia, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, and St. Mary's Home for Disabled Children. Previous years' service days have included the Norfolk Law Library, Botanical Gardens, and Red Wing Park in Virginia Beach.
"As attorneys we have a special gift where we can take a client's concerns into the courts," said Davenport. "But, just because we have that special gift doesn't mean we can't get dirty, too."
Learn more about Regent University School of Law.
Wading through the complexities of employment law can be a challenging process even for seasoned attorneys.
Through Regent Law’s Civil Litigation Clinic, current students have the opportunity to gain experience in some of the most challenging practice settings while helping clients in need in the process.
As part of her work with the Clinic, current student Emily Dunn ('13) recently helped a client win back the unemployment benefits which were unfairly denied her by her employer.
Dunn met with her client under the guidance of Professor Kathleen McKee, Director of the Civil Litigation Clinic. Dunn simplified the statutes and information involved in the case, developed a defense for her client based upon the corresponding case law, and won the case in court.
The clinical experience gives students confidence and a sense of accomplishment, eliminating the gap between the classroom and the courtroom.
"Our classes and professors instill in us the confidence we need to successfully represent our clients," Dunn says. "I was able to use that confidence to my client’s benefit in simplifying the process and vindicating her case."
Dunn's clinical experience solidified her desire to help people through the law by researching and advocating on their behalf. She highly recommends the clinic experience to future lawyers who have not yet had a chance to intern in an attorney’s office or in a court setting.
The Civil Litigation Clinic serves clients whose household income is at or below the federal poverty line, handling landlord/tenant, consumer, selected domestic relations, and administrative matters. Under the immediate supervision of an experienced attorney, students have direct responsibility for handling cases from initial interviews to conclusion of representation. The Civil Litigation Clinic has been in operation since January of 1995 and handles approximately 20-30 cases per semester.