Closing Argument

Issue: Winter 2022

Word Has It

Class words, throughout the years

by Kevin Carrillo.

In 2000, Reyes Aguilar, associate dean of admissions and financial aid, had an unusual idea: What if a word—one single, carefully chosen word—could articulate the unique energy of each incoming class of students?

Would it be successful? Would anybody care? Would he eventually run out of words?

All these years later, we know the answers. Aguilar has been selecting a class word every single year since the Class of 2003 began law school 21 years ago. This special word is shared with new students during orientation and revisited in commencement addresses, and for many students, it becomes an important part of their College of Law experience.

And so, in the spirit of celebrating what makes our college special, we share the full line-up of class words so far—and we trust there will be many more to come.

Crucial (Class of 2024).

Adjective: Extremely significant or important; vital to the resolution of a crisis or the determination of an outcome.

Pivotal (Class of 2023).

Adjective: A usually marked change; an adjustment or modification made in order to adapt or improve (so chosen because of the major alterations to new student orientation caused by the pandemic).

Imagine (Class of 2022).

Transitive verb: To form a mental image of something not present; to suppose or guess. To use the imagination, or to believe.

Irrepressible (Class of 2021).

Adjective: Impossible to repress, restrain or control.

Clarity (Class of 2020).

Noun: The quality or state of being clear; lucidity.

Confluent (Class of 2019).

Adjective: Flowing or running together; blending into one, as in confluent rivers and confluent ideas.

Entrusted (Class of 2018).

Adjective: To be given something for care, protection or performance; to be conferred or committed something with confidence.

Translative (Class of 2017).

Adjective: Of or pertaining to the transfer of something from one person, position, or place to another.

Endurance (Class of 2016).

Noun: The act, quality or power of withstanding hardship or stress; the state or act of persevering.

Inspirational (Class of 2015).

Adjective: Stimulating to a high level of feeling or activity. Moving the intellect or emotions; prompting action or invention.

Intrepid (Class of 2014).

Adjective: Characterized by resolute fearlessness, fortitude and endurance.

Vanguard (Class of 2013).

Noun: The troops moving at the head of an army; the forefront of an action or movement.

Resolute (Class of 2012).

Adjective: Marked by firm determination; resolved, bold, steady.

Remarkable (Class of 2011).

Adjective: Worthy of being or likely to be noticed, especially as being uncommon or extraordinary.

Timely (Class of 2010).

Adjective: Coming early or at the right time; opportune.

Rich (Class of 2009).

Adjective: Having high value or quality; well-supplied. Magnificently impressive; sumptuous. Vivid or deep in color. Highly productive or remunerative.

Intriguing (Class of 2008).

Adjective: Engaging the interest to a marked degree; fascinating.

Extraordinary (Class of 2007).

Adjective: Going beyond what is usual, regular or customary; exceptional to a very marked extent.

Profound (Class of 2006).

Adjective: Having intellectual depth. Extending far below the surface; intense.

Premier (Class of 2005).

Adjective: First in position, rank or importance; first in time.

Renaissance (Class of 2004).
Noun: A movement or period of vigorous intellectual and artistic activity. Adjective: Relating to someone with a wide range of interests, who is expert in several areas.

Millennium (Class of 2003, which began law school in 2000).
Noun: A period of 1000 years; a period of great happiness or human perfection.


Definitions adapted from the American Heritage Dictionary and Merriam-Webster Dictionary.