Published on October 31, 2023 by Sofia Paglioni  
Two New Client Clinics For Law Students 2023

Cumberland School of Law has announced two new live client clinics for students to expand their legal knowledge and gain experience in specific areas of law. The Cooney Contracts and Risk Management Clinic and the Cumberland Parole Clinic will provide opportunities for students to immerse themselves in the legal profession through a hands-on approach.

The Cooney Contracts and Risk Management Clinic will provide the opportunity for second- and third-year law students to learn about the legal implications of construction, insurance and surety contracts. The clinic will service clients of McGriff Insurance Services LLC (McGriff), part of Truist Insurance Holdings Inc., and one of the top 10 largest insurance brokers in the world.

Through the clinic, students will review and analyze insurance, construction and surety contracts as well as assist in providing risk management and insurance solutions for McGriff’s clients. Students will also analyze legal issues and draft research papers focused on the issues facing the insurance and construction industry.

The Cooney Contracts and Risk Management Clinic is supported by Gary Cooney, Samford alumnus from 1974 and former vice chairman of McGriff, Seibels & Williams Inc., the predecessor to McGriff. The clinic is directed by Eric Getty, McGriff’s senior vice president.

The Cumberland Parole Clinic has partnered with Redemption Earned, a nonprofit formed by retired Supreme Court of Alabama Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb. The mission of Redemption Earned is to identify, assist and represent worthy individuals who have spent decades behind bars. These individuals, many of whom are elderly and medically infirmed, who are deemed to have earned parole or work release.  

Law Students Taking Picture In The Library

In the clinic, students will be engaged in representing clients of Redemption Earned. Students will learn the process for parole and will screen clients who seek parole, review records of the Department of Corrections to determine whether a prisoner poses a risk to the public, plan re-entry services for potential parolees, and prepare for and argue parole cases before the Alabama Parole Board. In addition, students will be assisting Redemption Earned with its WIN Project by removing obstacles that are keeping prisoners from entering the work-release program.

The addition of these programs brings Cumberland School of Law’s clinical offerings to six. Other clinics that provide opportunities for law students to serve the community include the Capital Defense Clinic and the Criminal Appeals Clinic, both of which are conducted in partnership with the Jefferson County Public Defender’s Office; the Cumberland Innocence Clinic; and the Cumberland Veterans Legal Assistance Clinic (C-VETS).

Emily Davey, director of clinics, externships and public interest, said, “I’m really excited that we have broadened our clinic offerings for the spring. The Cooney Contracts and Risk Management Clinic expands our clinics into the transactional space while the Cumberland Parole Clinic increases the breadth of our criminal law clinics.” 

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.