Commitment to Quality and Service
THE UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY COLLEGE OF LAW
THE OFFICE OF CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION
The Office of Continuing Legal Education at the University of Kentucky College of Law (UK/CLE) is a separately budgeted, completely Self-Supporting unit of the College. Now in its 31st year of operation, UK/CLE offers instructional services and publications to maintain the professional development of practicing lawyers, law school faculty, the judiciary, and law students. Created in 1973 as the first continuing legal education entity in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, its stated purpose is to assist the legal profession in: (1) keeping abreast of changes in the law resulting from statutory enactments, court decisions and administrative rulings (2) developing and sustaining practical lawyering skills and (3) maintaining a high degree of professionalism in the practice of law. In addition to the statewide commitment to provide quality professional development services in Kentucky, UK/CLE has established regional reputations in bankruptcy, securities law, construction law, workers' compensation, and estate planning. It is recognized as the nation's leading resource in equine law.
UK/CLE has a tradition of firsts, starting with the initial observation that it was the first continuing legal education organization in Kentucky. Other firsts have included Kentucky's first intensive skills training course (10 days in trial advocacy) the nation's first annual conference dedicated to equine law Kentucky's first (and only) complete library of practice publications Kentucky's first origination of live satellite broadcasting to multiple statewide locations, the first use of two-way live video ("distance learning") for continuing legal education in Kentucky, the first (and only) offering of individually scheduled video programs for CLE credit in Kentucky and the first offering of audio self-study programs by a Kentucky CLE provider.
UK/CLE operates with a small but dedicated staff which takes pride in what they accomplish and the services they provide. Their efforts are combined daily with the expertise of hundreds of attorneys who voluntarily contribute to UK/CLE's professional development services. Thanks to these individuals' willingness to work in a joint public sector/private sector effort, the educational opportunities available to Kentucky lawyers, judges and law students are recognized as being among the best in the nation.
COMMITMENT TO QUALITY AND SERVICE
UK/CLE plays an active role in the Association for Continuing Legal Education (ACLEA), the international organization for continuing legal education. As such, UK/CLE subscribes to the ACLEA Standards in Continuing Legal Education as revised and adopted in 1992, and the Standards of Fair Conduct and Voluntary Cooperation administered under the auspices of the American Law Institute-American Bar Association Committee on Continuing Professional Education. Throughout its existence UK/CLE has been involved in the activities and services provided by ACLEA. The Office's former Director served as ACLEA President in 1993-94, was a past Chair of ACLEA's Law School Section, and also served on the Executive Committee of the CLE Section for the Association of American Law Schools. The Office's current Director has spoken at the annual ACLEA convention and has contributed to the ACLEA newsletter as an articles author. UK/CLE's association with national and international CLE professionals affords it the opportunity to continually reassess instructional methods, quality in publications and alternative methods of delivering professional development services. The Office periodically schedules retreats for its staff to conduct long range planning. These sessions allow the Office to focus on goals for overall quality and service into the future.
UK/CLE provides a variety of instructional programs. These range from half-day seminars and workshops in selected areas to broader-topic conferences and institutes extending over a two or three day period. While most programs are conducted at the College of Law in Lexington, UK/CLE has a long-standing commitment to statewide service.
Annual and biennial programs have established a core curriculum in many major practice areas. Several courses are offered every year or every other year providing periodic instruction, substantive updates and skills training for members of the bar. The ongoing course curriculum, showing the most recent annual or biennial event, presently includes:
Midwest/Midsouth Estate Planning Institute
Legal Issues for Financial Institutions Conference
National Equine Law Conference
Workers' Compensation Institute
Family Law Institute
Midwest/Midsouth Securities Law Institute
Joe Lee Bankruptcy Institute
Business Associations Institute
Real Estate Law and Practice Institute
Employment Law Institute
Consumer Bankruptcy Law Conference
Collection Law Conference
UK/CLE's regional and national reputation also continued to grow. Most annual and biennial programs typically draw registrants from 6-8 different states. The 2003 National Equine Law Conference drew registrants from twenty-eight states and two foreign countries. Our equine law publications have been utilized as instructional texts at Syracuse University College of Law and The University of Arizona. Other publications used for instructional texts at the University of Kentucky College of Law, other law schools, colleges and universities include UK/CLE's: Workers' Compensation in Kentucky, Intellectual Property, Kentucky Legal Research Manual, Kentucky Rules of Evidence, Kentucky Land Use and Zoning Law, Kentucky Estate Planning, Kentucky Estate Administration, Kentucky Health Law, and Kentucky Insurance Law.
The Office produces publications in several formats. All programs are accompanied by extensive speaker-prepared Course Materials. These bound materials are offered for separate sale and are regarded as valuable, affordable references for lawyers. UK/CLE also maintains a library of Practice Handbooks, Compendiums, and Monographs. Practice Handbooks are multi-author, fully indexed publications structured for comprehensive coverage of a defined body of law. Their format permits updating through supplements. Compendiums are practical titles which gather a variety of information regarding a particular topic and feature sample forms, sample documents, and sample clauses to be considered in drafting. Monographs are concisely written, indexed practice guides, often prepared by a single author and designed to cover topics of narrower scope than Handbooks. They are convenient references on topics often not treated by other publishers and are updated through new editions. See our Publications page for current titles.
UK/CLE's library is kept current through the use of supplements and revised editions. Updating our law practice library allows UK/CLE to maximize the dependability of its print services. Periodic updates are scheduled for each title. Monographs are updated through new editions. In order to avoid higher costs and prices, updates to practice handbooks frequently take the form of supplements.
The Office provides numerous benefits for the College of Law, both tangible and intangible. Professors lecture, write, and attend programs giving them an opportunity to contribute to the legal profession and to relate with members of the practicing bar. Law students attend programs and utilize UK/CLE publications in ever increasing numbers. Many alumni view our services as indispensable to improving their practice as well as a key means of maintaining contact with the College of Law. This gives them and other friends of the law school a personal reason to contribute their time as well as their financial assistance to the activities of the law school. The legal profession as a whole holds our services in high regard and looks to the University of Kentucky as a critical resource for the maintenance of their post law school professional development. While the operations of the continuing legal education office may at some future point require the direct financial support of the College of Law, it remains preferable to have the program operate on an income-based budget with break-even goals. If modest surpluses can be accumulated, they must be retained to offset possible operating losses in deficit years or reinvested to expand needed services for the legal community. With 43 states now mandating continuing legal education for attorneys, the demand for quality CLE services is becoming greater across the nation. In response, the College of Law must remain committed to the viability of one of the nation's most highly respected comprehensive professional development programs for lawyers. UK/CLE should remain an integral component of the overall mission of the law school through its commitment to lifelong learning, legal knowledge, the profession of law, and service to society.