With the departure of the Maryland Institute for the Continuing Professional Education of Lawyers (MICPEL), MSBA is assuming an enhanced CLE role as a service to its members. One of the missions of the Association, as set forth in its charter, is to provide CLE to Maryland lawyers, so MSBA is creating a new CLE Department to work with its 27 Sections and deliver electronic CLE to members. MSBA will continue MICPEL’s quality, cost-effective CLE programs and publications to benefit Maryland lawyers.
Therefore, MSBA is stepping in, rebuilding its CLE function and working directly with Sections to ensure the delivery of CLE to MSBA lawyers. The Association’s new CLE service assures the continuation of important CLE substantive law programs as well as the availability of MICPEL’s valued books and other publications. The CLE Department will facilitate MICPEL’s significant publications and electronic CLE programs as a member service at a competitive price.
Sections are already the foundation of most MICPEL CLE programs, and have been for the last 34 years, because they offer their respective attorneys’ expertise and talent. These volunteer attorneys, hailing from MSBA Sections, author legal publications and present CLE programs. So, Sections will be the driving force behind MSBA’s re-structured CLE service as they are best suited to deliver substantive CLE, especially that targeting Maryland law.
“Our Sections have embraced this new CLE model and are eager to produce CLE for members,” reports Paul V. Carlin, MSBA’s Executive Director, underscoring the Association’s commitment to CLE. “MSBA has the technological delivery system available to support our Sections and many are already delivering CLE through webinars.” Moreover, “two key pillars of MICPEL, Program Attorney Andrea Terry and Publications Manager Joanne Daniels, have joined MSBA’s staff in the CLE Department and will work closely with Sections to build a new MSBA CLE foundation.”
“We plan to offer quality CLE to our members at a more competitive cost than the national commercial CLE providers, especially when it comes to Maryland law,” adds Carlin. “Despite the plethora of CLE providers, our new CLE Department will hopefully prosper and develop year by year with our members’ support. We already have instant access to our 25,000 members.”
Additionally, at least 16 MICPEL titled publications, both new and revised editions, will now be available through MSBA’s CLE Department and it is possible that many of the remaining titles could be posted electronically in the near future. “Fastcase, the computerized legal research provider who offers MSBA’s free member legal research service, may be able to add many of MICPEL’s current volumes to its electronic list of offerings,” explains Carlin.
MSBA, along with the state’s two law schools, was a founding partner of MICPEL and supported it as the CLE provider from its inception in 1976. For 34 years, MSBA ceded CLE to MICPEL, but now circumstances require that it be brought back into fold, resuming a CLE role. MSBA will continue to serve Maryland’s lawyers by delivering quality and cost-effective continuing legal education to the extent it can do so.
Ultimately, MSBA’s new CLE service will benefit MSBA members and Maryland lawyers.