18◆ www.law.wne.edu PERSPECTIVES
By Professor Arthur D. Wolf, Director
INSTITUTE FOR LEGISLATIVE AND
This summer we hosted two students from Siena College in
another annual program that is designed to expose undergraduates to the work of attorneys and law professors. We had two
very talented rising seniors working with Dean Emeritus Arthur
Gaudio, and Professor Myra Orlen.
Lindsey Boyle (left) studied with Pro-
fessor Gaudio, focusing on recent changes
to certain HUD regulations (X and Z). At
the beginning of her research, she edu-
cated herself, under Professor Gaudio’s
expert guidance, in mortgage/real estate
law. Lindsey learned how to read and
understand complicated regulatory text.
While going through the HUD regula-
tions, Lindsey noticed that many of the
changes and additions had to do with reverse mortgage transac-
tions. Professor Gaudio taught her the rudiments of reverse mort-
gages and gave Lindsey some reading and research topics. He was
looking for some answers to specific questions, such as the bene-
fits and burdens of reverse mortgages, their marketing, and con-
sumer protection for them.
Taylor Cuomo (left) worked with Professor Orlen on her summer research. The project focused on the relationship between the
judicial captioning of cases and the manner
in which they are processed and resolved.
She began by updating Professor Orlen’s earlier chart of the states’ formats on captioning
for family court, specifically divorce cases. Some states had the typical adversarial captioning, “plaintiff v. defendant.” In contrast, other
states used a less adversarial caption, “in re the marriage of” (43,
Cal. 4th 751-2008).
After completing the chart, Taylor moved to the next part of the
research: to determine if different captioning styles (adversarial vs.
less adversarial) impact the outcome of the case. Do the more
adversarial captions actually create priming that makes the outcome of the case worse than if a less adversarial caption had been
used? Taylor found many informative articles using a variety of
databases, including Westlaw, JSTOR, ASP, and expanded academic ASAP.
The articles divided into distinct categories: ( 1) social sciences
(psychology and cognitive sciences): how “labeling” can impact
receipt of information and affect the outcome of specific inquiries;
( 2) literature: how titles affect our perception of a piece of writing;
and ( 3) legal scholarship: the impact of metaphor on the resolution
of disputes. The scholarly pieces supported the hypothesis that
captioning in court cases does indeed have an effect on judicial
For the eighth year, the School of Law cosponsored the annual
Northeast Regional Fair Housing and Civil Rights Conference, which
has grown to a major event. Attendance this year exceeded 500 participants. The two-day gathering also marked the 50th anniversary
of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
The workshops at the Conference covered a wide range of topics
currently on the front burner of civil rights and fair housing. Included
were sessions on disability law, public and private enforcement,
and human trafficking. Other topics included urban health, community development, veterans affairs, and fair employment practices.
The Conference also featured notable speakers, such as Dick
Gregory, activist and comedian; Attorney Jacqueline Berrien, Chair,
U.S. EEOC; Harvard Law Professor Charles Ogletree; Ms. Carmen
Ortiz, U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts; Dr. Rodney Hood, expert on
health and race; and Professor Lawrence Watson, teacher, artist,
performer, and cultural historian.