LEAD Week: Duke Law Welcomes the Class of 2009

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Previously known as Orientation Week, LEAD Week stays true to the School's message of lawyer education and professional development summarized in the Duke Blueprint to Lead, which distinguishes Duke Law for its focus on leadership training and development. Through team building activities centered around the themes "to lead," to build," "to serve," and "to engage," students will be called on to think about what it means to be a leader and a professional. Some are pure metaphorical fun -- jousting and Sumo wrestling, designed to prepare students for the first year experience, while others, such as meeting a man wrongfully imprisoned for 19 years, introduce students to the essence of ethical lawyering.

"We hope that LEAD Week will get students started on the right path and that the Blueprint will lead them through the next three years," says John Spencer, director of student activities.

Highlights of LEAD Week include:

  • A Hall of Honor Luncheon with the Honorable Judge Allyson Duncan '75 of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, who will lead the class of 2009 in the Duke Law Pledge
  • Ethical scenarios acted out with the help of Duke Law alumni to help students think about where they would "draw the line"
  • An address by Professor Jim Cox on the role of ethics in the modern legal profession
  • Transeo Orbis (or "jumping through hoops," loosely translated), which will challenge students to wrestle inflatable Sumo wrestlers (a moot court simulation) and climb an inflatable mountain (symbolic of the grading curve)
  • The compelling story of Darryl Hunt who was wrongly imprisoned for 19 years

"LEAD Week is only the beginning," says Spencer. "Even though it only lasts five days it is not a program; it's really more of an introduction to the Duke Law community and the beginning of a legal education."

View a complete list of LEAD Week activities [PDF]