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UH Law Center Emeritus Professor Joyce hosts student reunion

UHLC Emeritus Professor of Law Craig Joyce (center) surrounded by former students during a class reunion at the Coronado Club.

UHLC Emeritus Professor of Law Craig Joyce (center) surrounded by former students during a class reunion at the Coronado Club.

selecting ties

Former students select ties as parting gift from Emeritus Professor of Law Craig Joyce during a UHLC class reunion.

Dec. 01, 2023 — University of Houston Law Center Emeritus Professor of Law Craig Joyce recently orchestrated a reunion for students from his last 1L class. The event, held at The Coronado Club in downtown Houston on Tuesday, Nov. 7—coincidentally, Election Day—was a celebration of shared memories.

"I wanted them to feel honored and appreciated," Joyce explained, reflecting on the motivation behind the event. "This was a significant occasion, one that will be etched in their memories for the whole rest of their lives."

Joyce, who retired this September, decided to organize a reunion for his last 1L class, a section on Torts, which included about 35 students and the class tutors. The past students, now legal professionals, reminisced about their academic journey at the UH Law Center and their graduation without a traditional commencement ceremony, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The novel and inaccessible word 'torts” is emblematic of the experience of being a 1L. Law school brings with it new ways of thinking and writing, a new language, and new protocols for professionalism and civility. Professor Joyce had the expertise, the patience, and the humor to guide my class through both Torts and the broader transition into the legal profession. And for generations of UH graduates, including myself, that guidance never ceased. We have so much to be thankful to Professor Joyce for. This latest reunion event was no exception. It was great to see old friends, catch up, and celebrate our journey,” Drew M. Padley (J.D. ‘20) a former student of Professor Joyce and member of the 2017 Torts section.

As a parting gift, Joyce gave away more than 150 of his signature class ties from the nonprofit Save the Children to his former students. The ties serve as a tangible reminder of the shared experience of the class and symbolize making a positive impact on the world.

The event was made possible with the collaboration of Joyce, who funded the reunion, the UH Law Center Alumni and Community Relations staff, who provided support, and alumnus Warren W. Harris (J.D. ’88), the head of litigation at Bracewell LLP, who sponsored the event.

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