Tu says work as associate WVU Law dean means he can 'provide resources needed'

By Kyla Asbury | Jul 16, 2018

MORGANTOWN – Two professors at West Virginia University's recently were appointed to three-year terms as associate deans for the College of Law.

Shine "Sean" Tu is the associate dean for faculty research and development, while Elaine Wilson is the associate dean for academic affairs.

Tu said he is honored and excited about the opportunity.

"This position means that I can help provide the resources needed for our faculty to succeed in their endeavors to teach our students, help the state of West Virginia, and inform our citizens of current changes in the legal landscape," Tu said in an interview with The West Virginia Record.

Shine "Sean" Tu  

Tu said he plans to build the school's current efforts of increasing its brand recognition so that others in the state and in the country recognize the contributions of the wonderful faculty, staff and students at the school.

"We are doing incredible work in the law school’s classes, clinics, public seminars and among the larger community," Tu said. "We have created leaders, changed government policies and actively maintained important conversations with the general public. We do all of this within the rubric of helping the state of West Virginia."

Tu said within the law school, he is looking forward to helping the faculty integrate new teaching techniques and technology from outside traditional legal education. 

"We’ve already planned an exciting symposium with representatives from law schools around the country focused on this theme," Tu said. "I am enthusiastic about the possibilities that lay ahead of us."

Tu said he believes he was chosen for this position because of his active involvement at the College of Law and his enthusiasm for the larger community.

"Additionally, I feel one of my strengths is that I am analytical and strategic by nature," Tu said. "My scholarship has always been data-driven, and I hope to use that same approach to help allocate resources to areas that could bring the most dividends over many years to come."

Tu said the heart of what the faculty does is education and he is looking forward to finding ways to become a better faculty and community member and to discover the best methods to help students learn difficult legal doctrines.

"I also look forward to informing others about the amazing things we do here at WVU Law," Tu said. "For example, just this month, students in the Veterans Advocacy Law Clinic successfully appealed two denial of claim decisions for a veteran."

Tu said James Van Nostrand, a faculty member, recently wrote an op-ed piece surrounding President Donald Trump’s new coal and nuclear power policy, and the WVU Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Clinic recently hosted a conference discussing issues that are critical to developing West Virginia communities.

WVU College of Law Dean Gregory Bowman said that the school is very "grateful" to have Wilson and Tu serving as new associate deans.

"Both are dedicated and innovative teachers and wonderful scholars, and they are committed to serving our students and the state of West Virginia," Bowman said in an interview with The West Virginia Record. "I’m very grateful to have them as a part of the leadership team at the law school and university."

Bowman said the law school is committed to serving the state and the nation through excellent teaching, research and service.

"Elaine, Sean and I believe in this commitment very deeply, and I am confident they will excel in their new roles as associate deans and help us continue to move WVU Law and West Virginia forward," Bowman said.

Tu began teaching at the College of Law in 2011. He teaches copyright law, patent law, genetic property and food and drug law.

Before teaching, Tu was an associate with Foley & Lardner in Washington, D.C., where he was a member of the firm’s chemical, biotechnology and pharmaceutical practice and the life sciences and nanotechnology industry teams.

Tu earned two bachelor’s degrees from the University of Florida, and a doctor of philosophy from Cornell University, and a law degree from the University of Chicago.

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