AG Miyares Gives Keynote Address to ASL Graduates
On Saturday, May 14, the 2022 graduating class of Appalachian School of Law gathered at Riverview Elementary for ASL’s first traditional commencement ceremony since the pandemic started. Celebrating their hard work and resilience during unprecedented times, the ASL students received their diplomas from President and Dean B. Keith Faulkner. “These students faced the gauntlet of law school, a stressful experience in its own right, and did so during a global pandemic,” Faulkner observed. “I could not be more proud of them. Only the most determined and hopeful could succeed under such circumstances.”
The keynote speaker at the graduation ceremony was The Honorable Jason S. Miyares, Attorney General of the Commonwealth of Virginia. He reinforced the theme of resilience by reflecting on his mother’s brave escape from Cuba after the Castro Revolution, an event that acted out the ancient but false idea that might makes right. The Attorney General grew up to prize the American Dream and the role of the Rule of Law as its protector. “I want to recognize the uniqueness and mission of the Appalachian School of Law,” Miyares stated. “Twenty-percent of Americans live in rural areas but less than two percent of lawyers do,” he continued, “and part of ASL’s mission is to make sure that every American and every Virginian has legal representation so they can also understand that might does not make right.”
The ASL Alumni Association President, M. Rachel Wolfe, encouraged the Class of 2022 by focusing the graduates on the practical as well as the aspirational goals of their legal education: “While the legal profession is incredibly broad, you have gained the tools, the analytical skills, and communication methods to not only represent your future clients but to create a more fair and just world in whatever area of the law you choose.”
The entire graduation ceremony can be viewed at the ASL Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GBjitlazP3k.