Spring 2019 Gavel Spring Gavel 2019 - Page 9

colleagues [at the bench, bar, and academy]. It is the joy from thinking, researching, writing, serving, and helping to build a living learning community. And, ultimately, it is the joy of working together to create new links in the eternal chain of teaching and learning, in order to help our students find themselves as lawyers, so that they, in turn, will reach beyond themselves, with intention, using both their heads and hearts, to make a difference in this world – one conversation, one client, one case, at a time. Professor Alleva with former UND President Charles Kupchella upon receiving the Lydia and Arthur Saiki Prize for Graduate or Professional Teaching Excellence on February 23, 2006. place I did not know at all in order to transition from practitioner to professor of law. Of course, I made painful choices and gave up any number of could-have-beens. Such are the natural consequences of a major life shift. But I also learned, with equal intensity, that the choice itself brought a new world of possibilities and promises. After all, it was North Dakota that gave me my first opportunity to teach full-time – a precious opportunity I simply couldn’t refuse because I knew I wanted to teach, and this was my chance. I sometimes marvel at the porousness of it all – teaching, learning, living, being. Each flows in and through the other. Teaching is really learning is really living is really being. After all, what is life but learning – a continuous feedback loop of action and reaction which requires constant adaptation to new challenges. So, learning and lessons are everywhere, for the taking and for the teaching, at any time – and especially for lawyers, who ultimately must themselves become expert teachers and learners to do their jobs well. And I am not saying that my work is my life, though it often feels like it is. I am actually trying to convey the opposite – that teaching for me has been one very important manifestation of being alive, a subset of living that taps into my basic life forces for its energy, and So, it has been one of the great honors of my life to work alongside my law school colleagues in this noble pursuit. And I can barely bring myself to say that this is my last semester of teaching at the law school. Though I may teach again someday, somewhere, and – who knows – maybe even here, I will never again teach in this way, never again be at the end of the wondrous ride through the three-plus decades of teaching and learning and living that North Dakota made possible for me. My time here is embedded in my soul and will be a part of me whenever and wherever I go. There are moments when I am overcome by the thought of leaving – when I stare straight into the darkness and feel the emptiness of what it will be like to be without the haven of a typical law school work day – without Civil Procedure or Federal Courts or Professional Visions, without that knock on my office door by a curious student with a question, without that faculty meeting to discuss and adopt a curricular improvement, without that co-author conference call to decide upon draft article refinements, without that conversation with a judge or lawyer about an exciting new initiative, or without that helpful discussion with one of our dedicated staff colleagues. And, then, as I relive these countless experiences in my mind and heart, the emptiness succumbs to a feeling of fullness, as I think of everything over the years that we have learned from each other and created with each other, and I am filled with a joy so sublime that I am powerless to describe it. But know that this joy is real. And that it is sustaining and multidimensional. It is the joy from students and Professor Alleva in 2003 in the law school faculty office area. SPRING 2019 9