In response to the recent disturbances in Baltimore emanating from the death of Freddie Gray, the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law is offering a new course titled, “Freddie Gray’s Baltimore: Past, Present, and Moving Forward.”
The eight-week course, which begins in September, will be taught by Maryland Carey Law faculty members as well as other academics, practicing professionals and elected officials. It will be open to students from the law school and the University of Maryland School of Social Work.
The course will examine the unrest in Baltimore as well as its causes and possible solutions by focusing on social, economic and other issues, including policing practices, criminal justice, access to housing, health care, education, joblessness and community development.
“We see this course as just a beginning, not an end,” said Maryland Carey Law Dean Donald B. Tobin. “We want not only to educate our students but to inspire them to act on what they’ve learned and work with our neighbors in West Baltimore on efforts to reform laws and policies that will strengthen our community and city.”
Throughout the course, students will be apprised of volunteer opportunities to work on the issues addressed in each session.
The new course arose from conversations among law school faculty about how to help students understand the many issues raised by Freddie Gray’s death. The school had already launched a discussion series with the School of Social Work after the 2014 demonstrations in Ferguson, Mo.
With more than 20 legal clinics, Maryland Carey Law is home to one of the oldest, largest and finest clinical law programs in the country. It is nationally ranked by U.S. News and provides more than 140,000 hours of free legal services each year to individuals, families and organizations in Maryland.
The law school’s new and existing initiatives are part of a larger effort underway at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, to engage and revitalize the West Baltimore community in which it resides.