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Former White House counsel to speak to law graduates

SANTA CLARA, Calif., May 5, 2000 - Abner J. Mikva, former lawmaker and retired federal court judge, will speak at the 2000 commencement ceremonies for the Santa Clara University School of Law on Saturday, May 13.

At the 10:30 a.m.ceremonies in the Mission Gardens at the SCU campus, Mikva, who was White House counsel to President Clinton, will be given an honorary degree.

At the ceremonies, 294 J.D. degrees and 8 L.L.M degrees are to be awarded. In addition, 45 of the law graduates are to receive certificates in high-tech law, 43 in public interest law and six in international law.

The 149th SCU undergraduate commencement will be June 10, and the graduate schools' commencement will be June 11, both at Buck Shaw Stadium.

Mikva, nationally known former lawmaker and retired federal court judge from Chicago, served as White House counsel from 1994-1996. He received a law degree from the University of Chicago and began his career in 1951 as the clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sherman Minton. From 1952-1968 and then again from 1973 -1974, he had his own private law practice. During this time, Mikva was an Illinois assemblyman, 1956-1966, and a five-term congressman from Chicago.

Mikva served as a judge on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia from 1979-1991. In 1991, he became the chief judge of the 10th Circuit, where he served until his appointment to the White House in 1994.

The SCU School of Law was founded in 1912. Approximately 900 students are enrolled in the SCU law school, which offers specialty certificates in one of three areas: intellectual property law, international law or public interest law. The law school offers internships at high-tech companies, local law firms, local public services agencies and in 13 foreign countries in Europe and the Far East. Each year, a small number of lawyers from foreign countries study at SCU, earning an LLM. degree in United States law.

The law school's East San Jose Community Law Center - which uses lawyers and students and volunteers to help meet legal needs of low-income individuals in consumer, employment, immigration and small business issues - and its Santa Clara Law Clinic provide pro bono experience for law students.

The SCU law library has nearly 280,000 volumes in hard copy and microform. The SCU law school has an Institute of International and Comparative Law, a Public Interest Law Center, and the Edwin A. Heafey Jr. Center for Trial and Appellate Advocacy. Law school publications include the Santa Clara Law Review, the Computer and High Technology Law Journal, the Advocate newspaper, and the Environmental Law Review.

The law school also offers interdisciplinary courses, and a joint J.D./MBA program. It is accredited by the American Bar Association and the State Bar of California, and is a member of the Association of American Law School, the Conference of Western Law Schools, and the Law School Admission Council.

Santa Clara University, the oldest institution of higher education in California, is a private Catholic, Jesuit university with approximately 4,500 undergraduate and 3,200 graduate students. Home to the Mission Santa Clara de Asis, the University celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2000-2001.


For information about the Santa Clara University School of Law, see To arrange for an interview with Dean Mack Player, or with selected law graduates, call Barry Holtzclaw, or Adam Breen, at 408-554-5464.

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