Learning Communities

The University of Dayton School of Law is committed to providing all incoming law students with the foundational skills necessary for success through placement in a Learning Community. Each Learning Community consists of approximately 8 to 10 students and is led by Dean’s Fellows, upper-level students selected for their academic achievement, commitment to the Law School community, aptitude for expert learning strategies, and interest in education.

Dean’s Fellows work with the Law School’s Academic Success department and the 1Ls’ doctrinal professors and assist students in developing effective strategies to maximize the opportunity for academic success.

Throughout the semester, Dean’s Fellows facilitate a 60-minute session for their Learning Community.  While not providing substantive legal instruction, Dean’s Fellows assist students in developing the five general skills areas that first-year students need to be successful in their studies: (1) time management; (2) note-taking; (3) reading and briefing cases; (4) synthesizing (weekly review and outlining); and (5) and test-taking strategies.

The Learning Communities also encourage and promote students’ participation in various professionalism and career services activities and workshops to ensure that 1Ls are not just proficient in the classroom, but are healthy and well-rounded law students that the Law School cultivates and honors.

Participation in a Learning Community during the first semester of Law School is a graduation requirement for all students.

How can I become a Dean's Fellow?

2017 Dean's Fellows

The University of Dayton School of Law is proud to present the Dean's Fellows:

Fall 2017


Ebony Davenport

I could not be more excited to serve as a Dean's Fellow for this upcoming school year. Entering law school as a first generation college graduate and prospective first generation attorney, I was a little afraid that I would not "get it." I credit my success in school to the amazing support I received at home and at the School of Law. I had such a great experience with my Dean's Fellow that I knew that if given the opportunity to serve I would do so gladly. Transitioning to law school is not an easy feat but some of the stress that comes along with school can be relieved by establishing a solid support team that offers encouragement and guidance. As a Dean's Fellow I am committed to helping other students achieve their academic goals; connecting students with resources to assist in their professional development; and helping students feel a sense of community here at UDSL.


Tyler Dunham

The opportunity to work as a Dean’s Fellow will allow me to share the same outstanding leadership that I swore to provide to the men and women serving under me as a leader in my prior profession, and the same that was afforded to me by my Dean’s Fellow during my first year of law school. Through their adherence to professionalism and commitment to creating a community of excellence in practice, the professional impact the Dean’s Fellows will have on next year’s class goes far beyond their first-year studies. The influence the program will have on the careers of the aspiring lawyers who choose to study here will be life-long. Being afforded the chance to make such an impression on both the incoming class and the university is truly exciting, and I look forward to helping the first-year students set their practice in the right direction.

Timothy Hill

The Paul McGreal Fellow

The University Of Dayton School Of Law has a wonderful tradition of developing attorneys who make a difference in their respective communities.  That tradition does not derive by mere chance, but a concerted effort to continue a wonderful cycle of success.  Being a Dean’s Fellow allows me to play an important role in ensuring that UDSL’s future remains bright and steady.  I am proud to have the opportunity to assists our new students on their journey to greatness, and I look forward to providing the guidance I was fortunate to receive.  My Dean’s Fellow positively impacted my academic trajectory and provided the tools I needed to make the transition to law school.  I look forward to doing the same for the incoming cohort, and it is my absolute pleasure to share all I have learned with the class of 2020.


Kaitlyn Meeks

The UDSL Dean’s Fellow program is unique. It’s unique in that it gives incoming law students an inside prospective that many other institutions overlook. I had no idea what kind of environment I would be joining when I began law school, but I was sure it was a career I was interested in. I want to be a role model for someone just like the Dean’s Fellows were for me last year. On the very first day of orientation, I had not printed off my personal statement because I did not own a printer. When I sat down at a table to have breakfast, Alex Laine, who I did not know was a Dean’s Fellow at the time, sat down and began to talk to the group of us at the table. As I learned who she was and what her role was, I confessed I hadn’t printed off my paper, and I was nervous about what I should do. Instead of giving me a suggestion, she walked me into the library to the computer lab. She took the time to walk me through how the system would work and let me in on all the “inside tips” that came with the library. She made me feel comfortable. Immediately, I knew that I had made the right choice in coming to UDSL, and that I already had a friend in my corner.

Cody Myers

Upon my arrival to the University of Dayton School of Law, I did not know anyone. In my Learning Community, I found a smaller group of students that I could get to know because of the size of the group and the more intimate setting. The Learning Community really helped to take the intimidation factor out of law school. My Learning Community was instrumental in cultivating the close friendships that I now enjoy. I also found great comfort in establishing a relationship with an upper level student that already knew the ropes. She was a great resource – and still is – for me to ask the “dumb” questions that I felt would be too embarrassing to ask a faculty member. My Dean’s Fellow made my transition to law school extremely comfortable and my law school experience would not have been nearly as great without her. Therefore, I am excited about the prospect of doing the same for the next class of law students. I hope to make their experience as great as mine has been thus far.

Morgan Napier

When deciding which law school to attend, the Learning Community program was what set Dayton apart from other schools. I thought it was beneficial that from day one we would have an older student looking out for us and guiding us. I am excited about the prospect of being a Dean’s Fellow because of the opportunity to help new students through an experience that is exciting, nerve-wracking, and challenging all at the same time. I feel my previous experiences have given me the ability to guide students through this and help them flourish in law school. Additionally, I look forward to sharing the little tips that I have picked up that have made law school a little easier. I have developed a schedule and tricks that have helped me to thrive in my new environment as well as succeed academically. Finally, I love to be involved in my community. I enjoy knowing my peers and being able to help others.

Steven Potts

I want to be a Dean’s Fellow to give back to the law school community. Unlike most individuals I did not go straight to college after high school. Instead I decided to commit myself to public service by enlisting in the United States Marine Corps. After 3 years in the Marines I would be promoted to a leadership role, and it was during that time that I felt the most fulfilled. Leading and guiding the next generation of young citizens on their Marine Corps journey was the most fulfilling thing I ever did. My Dean’s Fellow, Leigh Ann, served as an integral part of welcoming me to the law school community. Leigh Ann answered all the numerous questions of mine throughout the semester and gave me very useful tips on how to succeed in law school. Tips that I’m still using today such as how to take notes in class or how to study for exams. But most of all just seeing her on Friday was extremely beneficial. Since it reminded me that another week was done and I had survived, which she always emphasized to us. The mentoring and guidance she provided me reminded me of the guidance that I used to provide my Marines.

Anthony Satariano

I am truly honored to have the opportunity serve as a Dean’s Fellow for the 2017 Fall Semester. My Dean’s Fellow proved to be invaluable in helping me with my transition into UDSL and now I am very excited to reverse roles and be the helping hand that students need. Law school can be challenging at times, but it is also an extremely enriching and empowering experience. I hope to be able to show the new students how much they can get out of their time here at UDSL and aid them in any way possible during their pursuit to become practice ready attorneys. I cannot wait to give back to the UDSL community and watch as the new students help to make it stronger than ever. 


Tamara Winkler

There are many aspects of being a Dean’s Fellow that excite me. I hope to emulate the characteristics of my own Dean’s Fellow, who was a great role model, super positive, enthusiastic and genuine. Law school is a trying and stressful time in a person’s life. It is natural for a student to feel overwhelmed and alone, and to feel that s/he is the only one with those feelings. Especially for first year law students, it is easy to think, “I am the only one who doesn’t understand what is going on,” when in reality most students feel exactly the same way. This can be a major challenge for students and is still something that I struggle with personally. As a Fellow, I will strive to create dialogue between students to help alleviate some of these stresses, as well as to provide my students with resources available on campus. Communication is the key to success, and I will strive to regularly communicate with my students to address challenges and find effective solutions.

Summer 2017


Catherine Breault

I am very excited to be a Dean’s Fellow. I am passionate about helping others and relish the opportunity to share my knowledge and time with incoming Juris Doctor candidates. Empathy is a quality ingrained in my learning and I believe being empathic is closely related to being a morally ethical attorney. I view challenges as opportunities to grow, and live life with a positive, optimistic attitude. As a Dean’s Fellow, I look forward to aiding the new entering class, but also learning from them as well.


Andre Tirado

As a non-traditional student returning to college after a long break, I had multiple challenges upon coming to UDSL. Being a summer start and going from a normal adult life to an intense classroom setting was jarring, but after a short while I found it reinvigorating, and this is something I want to pass on to the new students as a Dean’s Fellow. Law school can be a draining and exhausting experience, especially in the first few months, and I relish the opportunity to help students with both the scholastic and organizational law school skills they will need to succeed.

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