Bricker describes the energy at McGeorge School of Law as “unparalleled.”
“I loved the students at McGeorge from the first minute that I got here. It is an extraordinary group of students who wear their hearts on their sleeves, take risks while leaving their egos at the door, are tenacious, and really smart. And then they get out there and make a real difference in the world,” Bricker said.
While at McGeorge, Bricker taught Criminal Law, Trial Advocacy, Advanced Trial Advocacy, Mock Trial Evidence, Criminal Pretrial Litigation, the Federal Defender Seminar and Clinic, The Legal Profession, and the Art of Plea Bargaining. She has also been the faculty advisor to the Trial Advocacy Association, Criminal Law Society, and Public Legal Services Society groups on campus in addition to serving as the co-director of the Center for Advocacy and Dispute Resolution with Professor Ed Telfeyan.
Through her leadership and coaching, McGeorge School of Law’s mock trial teams have competed and won at prestigious intercollegiate regional, national, and international competitions. Bricker and her students have earned the law school a national reputation for the quality of its advocacy program.
Arthur, who is the outgoing president of the Trial Advocacy Association and an alumna of the mock trial team, made sure to take every class Bricker taught.
“Her Criminal Law class solidified my decision to become a defense attorney,” Arthur said. “Her Trial Advocacy course taught me the intricacies of trial that being on the mock trial team did not. Her Advanced Trial Advocacy course expanded my creativity and boosted my confidence and self-esteem. Her Plea Bargaining course taught me the persuasive techniques that work for me and my personality type outside of trial, so I still get an outcome I want and that’s best for my clients.”
Outside of teaching at McGeorge, Bricker is a highly sought-after instructor with the National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA) Foundation, teaching at law firms and public programs around the country in addition to serving as program director for several deposition and trial programs with the Legal Aid Association of California (LAAC). NITA also sent Bricker and her colleagues to Belfast, Ireland to train solicitors and barristers as well as to Tokyo to work with attorneys and judges. Over the last 17 years, she has also trained law professors how to teach Trial Advocacy to their students in China, through a McGeorge/USAID program, and in Russia, through the U.S. Russia Foundation. Lastly, she and two McGeorge colleagues taught client interviewing and counseling to public defenders in Santiago, Chile.
When former students reflect on their time in Bricker’s classes, a common theme in their experiences is Bricker’s remarkable ability to connect with them on a personal level.
Third-year law student Hannah Cho remembers the support Bricker gave her after feeling overwhelmed during her first few months on the mock trial team.
“When I shared some of my worries, Professor Bricker kindly listened and reminded me of my strengths and capabilities,” Cho recalled. “She told me that while I may be feeling nervous now, my strong work ethic and desire to further develop my advocacy skills will help shape me into a successful future attorney. I am thankful that she saw the potential in me that I had temporarily lost sight of.”
Those who have learned from Bricker will admittedly miss her. Barbanica, the incoming president of the school’s Trial Advocacy Association, recalled the dread she felt on Bricker’s last day of teaching.
“Immediately after her last class celebration, I walked out of the courtroom and was teary-eyed, knowing I would never experience another one of her classes. Professor Bricker has not only ignited a love for trial work that at the beginning of law school, I didn’t know I had, but has taught me so much that I know I will use in my future work as a trial attorney,” Barbanica said.
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