Baylor Law School Helps Bring 41 Children into Forever Homes in Annual Adoption Day

  • adopt 2016
    Forty-one foster children were adopted into their permanent families at Baylor Law School's 2016 Adoption Day. (Courtesy Baylor Photography)
  • adopt2 2016
    This year's Adoption Day theme was "Adoptions: Finding Families," inspired by the popular children's movie "Finding Dory." (Courtesy Baylor Photography)
Dec. 9, 2016

Follow us on Twitter: @BaylorUMedia

Media contact: Eric M. Eckert, (254) 710-1964

WACO, Texas (Dec. 9, 2016) – A record-breaking 41 children were adopted into their forever homes during Baylor Law School’s annual Adoption Day.

Each year, the Law School celebrates the joys of adoption and encourages people to pursue adoption as a way to give children permanent families. This ninth annual celebration is part of a nationwide effort to call special attention to foster children waiting in the United States and to celebrate all loving families that adopt.

“Adoption Day is a national day that celebrates foster care adoptions,” said Bridget Fuselier, professor of law and founder of the Adoption Day program. “All of the children adopted that day were removed from their homes and have been in the foster care system. Parental rights of the biological parents are terminated and now a family wants to make them part of their home permanently. It’s about making forever families.”

This year’s Adoption Day theme was “Adoptions: Finding Families,” inspired by the children’s movie “Finding Dory,” in which Dory sets off on a quest to find her long-lost family. Baylor Law School students helped decorate the first floor of the law center, transforming it into a fun, family celebration under the sea. Faculty and students greeted families, entertained children and hosted “Finding Dory”-inspired games and activities dressed as characters from the popular film, including Marlin, Hank, Nemo and, of course, Dory. Gift baskets, a luncheon and custom cakes were provided.

“The law students tell me it is their favorite day of the year,” Fuselier said. “They are excited to do something special for the families and they look forward to actually watching the adoption hearings. I think it gives them a close-up look at the impact we truly have as lawyers. Lawyers are an integral part of the process and they help the people involved reach the ultimate goal of adoption.”

Nearly 60 Baylor Law School students volunteered their time for Adoption Day this year.

“When students get to participate in Adoption Day, they get to see the law and what attorneys can do for people to better their lives come to full fruition,” said Gracie Wood, law student and event organizer. “I think it helps motivate the students because they see something tangible to strive for, helping others.”

Baylor Law School hosts the event in collaboration with the Baylor Law Public Interest Legal Society, the Waco-McLennan County Bar Association, and the McLennan County office of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services.

“Adoption Day is a core component of Baylor Law’s commitment to creating a culture of service,” said Stephen Rispoli, assistant dean of student relations and pro bono programs. “It allows our students to experience the joy of bringing families together. We hope that the experience will inspire students to give their time to programs like this once they are licensed lawyers.”

Monetary gifts to support future Adoption Day programs can be made by contacting Bridget Fuselier at Bridget_Fuselier@baylor.edu.

“It’s a day about happiness and hope and new beginnings,” Fuselier said. “The joy that we witness in the children and the adoptive parents is beautiful to behold.”

More information about Baylor Law School’s Adoption Day can be found on the Baylor Law Adoption Day website. Visit the Baylor Law public service website to learn more about Baylor Law’s additional public service programs.

by Kalli Damschen, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY

Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.

ABOUT BAYLOR LAW SCHOOL

Established in 1857, Baylor Law School was the first law school in Texas and one of the first west of the Mississippi River. Today, the school has more than 7,000 living alumni. It is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools. Baylor Law School has a record of producing outstanding lawyers, many of whom decide upon a career in public service. The Law School boasts two governors, members or former members of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, two former directors of the FBI, U.S. ambassadors, federal judges, justices of the Texas Supreme Court and members of the Texas Legislature, among its notable alumni. In its law specialties rankings, U.S. News & World Report ranked Baylor Law’s trial advocacy program as the third best in the nation. Baylor Law School is also ranked No. 51 in the magazine’s 2015 edition of “America’s Best Graduate Schools.” The National Jurist ranks Baylor Law in its top 10 law schools for practical training, and second best value in private legal education in the nation. The Business Insider places Baylor Law among the top 50 law schools in the nation. Learn more at www.baylor.edu/law.

Looking for more news from Baylor University?