Professor Andrew Spiropoulos, Director of the Center for the Study of State Constitutional Law & Government.
The Center for the Study of State Constitutional Law and Government was founded to develop and implement programs dedicated to the improvement of state constitutions and state governance. By sponsoring workshops, scholarly writing, and public lectures, the Center promotes scholarship and discussion on important issues relating to state government.
The Center sponsors one of the School of Law’s most important annual academic events, the Brennan Lecture in State Constitutional Law. Named in honor of the late Justice William J. Brennan, Jr., the Brennan Lecture has brought several of the most prominent and thoughtful scholars in the nation to the School of Law and the Oklahoma City community. This year our speaker was Randy E. Barnett, the Austin B. Fletcher Professor at the Boston University School of Law. Professor Barnett is one of the nation’s leading public law scholars and the author of important books on constitutional law, contract law, and jurisprudence.
This year, the Center will host its second annual speakers series on state and local Government. The series will feature a monthly lecture by a prominent figure in state and local government. The purpose of the series is to introduce students to the opportunities and challenges of public service. This year, the Center will present lectures by Lieutenant Governor Mary Fallin, Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett, Oklahoma County District Attorney Wes Lane, and Oklahoma Secretary of Energy David Fleischaker.
This past year, the faculty of the School of Law modified the Certificate in Public Law designed and administered by the Center in order to facilitate satisfaction of the certificate requirements. This program enables students who excel in a sufficient number of public law courses, write a publishable paper in public law, and complete additional requirements including additional writing or completing an externship in government to receive a special certificate.
The Center and the School of Law offer a Government Law Externship program that provides extensive opportunities for students to gain practical experience in the practice of public law. Placement opportunities are available, for example, in the Oklahoma County District Attorney’s Office, the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Oklahoma, and the Oklahoma Corporation Commission. Professor Michael Mitchelson, Assistant Professor of Law, is the Director of Externship Programs of the School of Law.