Inaugural Nuclear Verdicts Defense Institute

Nuclear Verdicts Defense Institute

SAN DIEGO (June 27, 2022) – University of San Diego (USD) School of Law Director of Development, Debbie Rider, '84 (JD), shared Dean Robert A. Schapiro’s congratulations to defense attorneys who participated in Tyson & Mendes’ inaugural Nuclear Verdicts Defense Institute held at the U.S. Grant June 23-26, 2022.  Civil defense attorneys engaged in three full-days of rigorous and groundbreaking training for designed to elevate trial techniques, litigation tactics, and jury strategies—to level the playing field and provide for equal justice for all litigants.  

When Dean Schapiro assumed the role of law school dean at University of San Diego a year and half ago, his vision immediately included— extending the reach of USD School of Law—beyond a three-year JD degree.  With the help and support of the Office of Graduate, International and Certificate Programs, Dean Schapiro partnered with Tyson & Mendes’ to assemble an esteemed faculty of legal defense experts to provide practical litigation expertise. The Institutes’ faculty included top trial attorneys, a licensed psychologist, a certified faculty member for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy and professor at the University of San Diego School of Law, Linda Lane.  The law school’s Graduate Studies endorsed The Nuclear Verdicts Defense Institute as an elite trial academy uniquely developed to teach experienced defense attorneys how to stop Nuclear Verdicts.

This educational partnership with a renowned law firm is important to USD, not only because it extends legal education beyond the initial 3-year degree, but also because the law school is thoroughly committed to hands-on legal training from the first day of law school.  Six years ago, Professor Linda Lane and then dean of USD, Stephen C. Ferruolo, imagined a 1st year course targeted at teaching trial skills and litigation strategies from the moment that students step foot on the campus.  USD’s Experiential Advocacy Practicum (EAP) provides students with hands-on experience to test and apply the doctrinal theories of their first year courses.  In addition to teaching litigation skills throughout first semester of law school; the EAP course instruction transitions to teaching transactional skills during student’s second semester of law school. 

Tyson & Mendes generously supports the law school’s innovative Experiential Advocacy Practicum, which utilizes some of the same teaching and trial strategies utilized during the three-day immersive educational experience —including  expert panel discussions, small group activities, and demonstrations, experienced  trial attorneys for students to learn the trial skills necessary excel in the practice of law.

Dean Schapiro and the Office of Graduate Programs at the Law School are proud to support the accreditation as the first class of Nuclear Verdicts Defenders.  With deepest appreciation to:

Robert Tyson—Strategic Managing Partner of Tyson & Mendes. Bob Tyson is a nationally recognized trial lawyer and author of the #1 best-selling, book Nuclear Verdicts: Defending Justice for All.

Patrick Mendes—USD Law School Alumnus! Founding Partner who joined forces with Robert Tyson in 2002 to form Tyson & Mendes, which has evolved into one of the region’s leading defense firms with offices throughout the nation.  USD is proud of Patrick’s success as a litigation partner and outstanding alumnus.

USD Professor of Practice, Linda Lane—who previously practiced as a litigation partner with Morrison & Foerster LLP, specializing in product liability and aviation defense. A certified faculty member for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy, she now teaches trial advocacy skills and experiential advocacy practicum at USD School of Law.

USD looks forward to future collaborations with Bob Tyson and his colleagues at Tyson & Mendes.  USD is fortunate to be part of the inaugural year of this outstanding program, which represents all that is achievable through hard work and dedication of law firms collaborating with USD School of Law!

About the University of San Diego School of Law

Each year, USD educates approximately 800 Juris Doctor and graduate law students from throughout the United States and around the world.  The law school is best known for its offerings in the areas of business and corporate law, constitutional law, intellectual property, international and comparative law, public interest law and taxation.

USD School of Law is one of the 84 law schools elected to the Order of the Coif, a national honor society for law school graduates.  The law school's faculty is a strong group of outstanding scholars and teachers with national and international reputations and currently ranks 30th nationally among U.S. law faculties in scholarly impact and 28th nationally in past-year faculty downloads on the Social Sciences Research Network (SSRN). The school is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools. Founded in 1954, the law school is part of the University of San Diego, a private, independent, Roman Catholic university chartered in 1949.


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