Skip to main content


Gavel Gazette Header

Week of 27 November 2023


Holiday Donation Drive for Breaking Bread Community Shelter

Now until Friday, December 15

This holiday season If/When/How, the Fashion Law Society, Anti-Poverty Society, Street Law Society, and FGL are hosting a law school donation drive! All donated items will be given to Breaking Bread Community Shelter in Upper Darby, PA. This shelter was founded by our very own Anti-Poverty Fellow, Professor Sena!

Breaking Bread has identified a need for the following items:

  • Toiletries (e.g. shampoo, conditioner, feminine products, depends, toothpaste, toothbrushes, toilet paper)
  • Eating Essentials (e.g. plastic cups, paper plates, bowls, utensils, paper towels, etc.)
  • Cleaning Supplies (e.g. bleach, Windex, wipes, Fabulouso)
  • Coffee Products (e.g. sugar, ground coffee, powdered creamer)
  • Clothing & Shoes (e.g. new underwear, socks, T-shirts; winter jackets, bras, shoes, any clothing generally)
  • Bedding (e.g. blankets, pillows, pillowcases)
  • Food (e.g. peanut butter, jelly, canned tuna fish, cereal, Oreos, snack packs, cereal/granola/protein bars)

Two donation boxes will be placed in the Commons from November 14th to December 15th. All donations are greatly appreciated!


Weekly Mass and Other Worship Opportunities

Mass is held at the Law School Chapel of Our Lady, Mirror of Justice, dedicated in memory of Helen A. O’Connor, on Wednesdays at 12:30pm when classes are in session. The last Mass for the semester will be December 6th. Further details and other opportunities for worship can be found on the Campus Ministry website. For other information, you may contact Fr. Aldo Potencio, OSA at


Virtual Graduate/Law Student Support Group

Wednesday, November 29, 4-5pm

Looking to connect with other students for support? Stressed about upcoming exams? Still navigating adjustment to law school? Would you benefit by talking with other students facing some of the same challenges? The University Counseling Center is launching the Graduate/Law Student Support Group. The group will have an initial meeting on November 29th, and interested students should either email or at the University’s Counseling Center or call 610-519-4050 to schedule a 5-10 minute call to talk about details. Given students’ schedules, the group will meet virtually and continue into spring semester. 



Reimel Competition Winners

Please join the Moot Court Board in congratulating Jillian Updegraff and Daniel Rooney, winners of the 64th Annual Theodore L. Reimel Competition! The Board commends Abby Morris and Grace Mezzanotte for their performance; all four finalists were outstanding.

We also congratulate:

Jillian Updegraff, Best Oralist in the Final Round

Lily Beck and Noah Swanson, Best Brief

Jillian Rotman and Kaitlyn Furst, Second Best Brief

Anthony Ryback and Rachel Goldstein, Third Best Brief

Rachel Phillips, Best Preliminary Round Oralist

Sam Rollick, Victoria Pena-Parr, and Andrea Solis Canto were offered membership on the Moot Court Board based on their outstanding performances throughout the Competition.

The Board is grateful to the professors who judged the Quarterfinal Rounds: Deans Risch and Lund, and Professors Baum, Brogan, Cavataro, Chanenson, Fissell, Lim, Mooney, Ravid, Scalio, and Voegele.


Moot Court Board External Competition Success

Congratulations to Dan Goldfield and Anna O’Brien, who advanced to the semifinal round at the 8th Annual Notre Dame Law School Religious Freedom Tournament Moot Court Competition November 10-12. The team was coached by Alannah King and Parks Kingery. 


More Trial Team Success

The Villanova National Trial Team wrapped up the fall semester with another successful performance. This past weekend, team members Elizabeth Land, Veronica Sansone, Ambria Smith, and Grant Stephano travelled to Sacramento, California for the inaugural Gold Cup hosted by Pacific McGeorge. The team went 2-1 in the preliminary rounds defeating Emory and South Texas (both highly respected trial advocacy programs), and losing to St. John’s (the eventual tournament champions). The team advanced to the quarter finals where they dropped a highly contested round to Fordham University losing a split ballot by one point. The team was coached by Ryan Kelly ’21 and Leah George ’21. Congratulations to the team and their coaches for their impressive accomplishments!



Good Luck on Exams!

Information regarding exam times, rooms, and permitted materials is available at


Smoking Policy

Smoking is prohibited in all University buildings, including the Law School, and within 75 feet of all buildings, which includes…

  • the front of the law school,
  • the walkway from the parking garage,
  • the outdoor dining area,
  • all entrances.

This policy covers all tobacco products (including smokeless tobacco and dip). Thank you for your cooperation.


Emergency Closing Information

The Law School rarely closes because of weather or emergency conditions, but should it become appropriate that information will be available on the Law School website, our Emergency Cancellation Line 610-519-7744, and a notice will be sent via Nova Alert. If you have not signed up for Nova Alert, you may do so online at MyNova>Novasis>Personal Information>Nova Alert – Sign-up.

The Emergency Cancellation Line is a listen-only number that will carry details regarding closing, late opening, early closing, and library access. Please do not call the main number to obtain information available on the Emergency Cancellation Line.


Law Library Use During Finals

During finals, library use is limited to those in the Villanova Law community. Please show your ID when you enter the law library. As a reminder, the law library is a quiet study space. Talking/noise is disruptive to other students. Please respect your classmates and take phone calls and other conversations outside the library. Headphones are available for check out at the Circulation Desk for listening to class or other recordings. If you wish to talk with others, please reserve a group study room in the library or the classroom wing or meet in the coffee bar, Student Lounge, or a vacant classroom. Your fellow students greatly appreciate it! The Library also has a limited supply of earplugs – ask for them at the Circulation Desk. 


WK Online Study Aids Library, Practice Questions, Old Exams and More!

Our Aspen Learning Library offers many different study aids including Casenote Legal Briefs, Emanuel CrunchTime and Law Outlines, Examples & Explanations, Glannon Guides, the Inside Series and many more. Also check out our Study Aids research guide for other study guides, links to the old exam database and other materials to get you ready for finals. Try CALI tutorials to help you review concepts and quiz yourself as you go along. We also have 1L textbooks available for checkout at the Circulation Desk. And if you’re finishing up a research paper, review our other Research Guides for more sources or contact for additional assistance. Good luck on your exams!


Podcasts and Research/Technology Skill-Building Resources Available Over Break

Facing a long drive, flight or train ride over Winter Break? Check out our Legal Podcasts guide to help you pass the time. Or pick up new legal-specific drafting skills in Word, Excel, and other technologies through Procertas. See the Develop a New Skill page for other ways to enhance your resume and prepare for your Spring classes.


Student Absence Reporting Form

If you have missed or know you will miss a class session and believe the absence may be excused, you may use this form to record the absence and have it excused where applicable. Please note that individual faculty members DO NOT receive submitted forms, so you must still notify your professors independently of any absences. 


Writing Competition Guide

If you are interested in participating in one of the many annual law student writing competitions, check out the Writing Competitions Guide: There is information in the Guide regarding the mechanics of writing for publication, as well as lists of open competitions. 


Wellness Resources for Students

Villanova University School of Law faculty and staff care about you. We remind all law students to prioritize your physical, emotional, and mental health. It is important to reach out if you are going through a challenge, feeling overwhelmed, need to talk or want to find ways to maintain balance in your life.

Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers: LCL is fully operational during this time of uncertainty. They have one staff rotating in the office each day to ensure every helpline call will be thoroughly handled.  Their volunteer base of 295 law students, attorneys, and judges are ready, willing, and able to assist any student, staff or faculty member that may be struggling LCL’s 24/7 helpline is 888-999-1941 and their website is also a wealth of information

University Counseling Center: Please see the Counseling Center’s website regarding their message for continuity of care, on-line appointment request form, local referrals or prescription refill if you have been seeing the University psychiatrist. Law Students have full access to the University Counseling center M-F, 9-5 610 519- 4050 and UWill 24/7 Telehealth Counseling

Villanova’s Health and Well-Being website

Nancy Whalen, Director of Student Affairs and Wellbeing can help you if you need to connect to resources, want a wellness check-in or need to discuss a specific concern.  Email her at or schedule a time to meet with Nancy.

In an emergency, call Villanova Public Safety at 610-519-4444.

The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is a United States-based suicide prevention network of over 160 crisis centers that provides 24/7 service via a toll-free hotline with the number 9-8-8. It is available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.


Gazette Submissions

This is the final edition of the Gavel Gazette for this semester. Please submit items for the January 16th issue to by 3pm on Friday, January 12th.