Black Law Students Association hosts Vegas Night Saturday to raise funds

The Black Law Students Association (BLSA) at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law will celebrate its annual Vegas Night fund-raiser on Saturday, March 25, from 7 to 11 p.m. at the McNichols Campus in the Student Union Ballroom. A ticket to the event will include a night full of fun and fine dining.

Vegas Night is a casino-style event hosted by BLSA where attendees will be able to play games such as blackjack and poker, with all proceeds going to minority law scholarships. This year’s theme is “Old Hollywood'' where the BLSA will honor the legacy of its “Stars.”

Sydney Jackson, the current Parliamentarian on the e-board, stated, “Vegas Night is an event everyone—regardless of if they are students or alums—can attend. This event is a great time to network, relieve a bit of stress, and maybe show off some new dance moves—all in the name of a great cause.”

Past alumni who have contributed to the growth and continuation of BLSA’s success will be recognized. BLSA acknowledges the fact that “without the trailblazers and pioneers who have sacrificed for the organization, its legacy would not nearly be as formidable,” according to Jackson.

Some of the “Stars'' who will be honored during the night include Pamela McClain, first African American female commander in the history of the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office; Tanisha M. Davis, attorney and solo practitioner; Judge Terrence Keith of the Wayne County Probate Court; and Judge Marlena Taylor of the 36th District Court.

“These individuals were strategically selected by the members of BLSA’s Executive Board, as each honoree has made an impact on the Detroit Mercy legal community and deserves recognition,” said President Coriann McMillen. “They embody what it means to be true role models and mentors.”

BLSA is a professional organization of law students dedicated to service, mentoring, raising political and social awareness, and networking.

“BLSA plays a key role in mentoring incoming students from underrepresented groups” said Detroit Mercy Law Dean Jefferson Exum. “By connecting with BLSA, students who may not have lawyers in their families are able to learn about law school study skills, professional networking, and other valuable skills that will support them in their legal education and thereafter.”

She also acknowledged the critical role fund-raising plays in furthering BLSA’s core mission.

“Fund-raising initiatives like Vegas Night provide the resources BLSA uses to not only offer valuable assistance to current students, but also to do the important service work that BLSA provides in the Detroit community,” Exum said.

This year’s sponsors include high-profile, full-service Michigan law firms such as Varnum, Plunkett Cooney, Dickinson Wright, Bodman, Troutman Pepper, and Maddin Hauser. The silent auction will feature a host of exciting items up for bid, including autographed Detroit Lions’ memorabilia signed by star running back DeAndre Swift. Also on the auction block will be handbags, clothing, and accessories from Detroit owned brands such as Sana, Harper Ray, and Moneyball Sportswear. All the items available during the silent auction were donated to BLSA directly.

Tickets are available at the door and cost $50 for students and $60 for the public. For additional information, send an e-mail to


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