Welcome Back—Fall 2022

Dean Gillian Lester shares updates and welcomes the community back to campus. 

Dear Students,

Though spring may be the season of renewal for our natural ecosystem, it is the fall that sees a reawakening of institutions of learning, as life returns to our courtyards, classrooms, and halls.

To those of you who have newly joined us here in Morningside Heights—our 1L, LL.M., and transfer students: We are thrilled to welcome you and the unique threads you will weave into our collective fabric.

Looking to the year ahead, I feel excited about the learning we will do together—some joyful, some difficult, all rewarding. Here are but a few highlights:

All of you are on your way to becoming superb lawyers. But beyond that, as Columbians and lawyer-leaders, you will go on to build, steward, and strengthen the core public and private institutions of our civil society—to make them more effective, more just, more inclusive. Your role will be essential to nothing less than the health of our democracy. What’s more, your classroom education is only a part of what will prepare you for this calling.

The friendships you form, the conversations you open yourself to—particularly with people whose lives have been very different from your own—the service you perform beyond our walls, the mentors you gain…all of these will help shape the legal professionals you are to become. So as you dig into the year ahead, I challenge you: Participate fully, with curiosity, with open hearts, and with an enduring sense of what is possible.

Best wishes for a semester of enlightenment, friendship, purpose, and hope.

Gillian Lester
Dean and Lucy G. Moses Professor of Law