THE UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA AT ASHEVILLE
Statement of Faculty Senate Action:
APC 24: Changes in Pre-Law Catalog Listing
Effective Date: Fall semester, 2001
Second sentence of Pre-Law Program on page 47 of 2000-2001 catalog that reads "Although the majority of students going on to law traditionally major in Political Science, History, or Economics, UNCA graduates in fields as diverse as Psychology, Mathematics, Literature, Management and Classics have done well in law schools throughout the nation."
"Accordingly, undergraduates interested in the law have majored in a wide range of disciplines at the University and have gained acceptance to law schools throughout the nation."
The impact will be to encourage majors from all disciplines throughout the University. No future staffing needs or course offerings should be affected.
The language was originally placed in the catalog twenty years ago when the University had fewer programs and majors. The new proposed language reflects the growth and development of the University and its programs over the last two decades. Moreover, the new language seeks to be inclusive and not exclusive, thus de-emphasizing the importance of any particular major to admission to law school. Lastly, the new language also encourages diversity in majors who want to further their careers in the law, an appropriate affirmation for the University's liberal arts mission and also a more accurate representation of the changing nature of the profession itself.
Delete: The entire second paragraph beginning with "Any student..'
Theoretically, the deletion of the 90-hour requirement eliminates the possibility of any student at the University enrolling in an accredited law school with such a concurring program, but, in practice, the impact would be nil since no such programs exist today. Moreover, in more than twenty years only one student actually enrolled in such a program, now defunct, yet at least five or six students ask about the program each year. The elimination of the program would not affect future staffing or course needs.
One of a number of conditional programs begun by law schools thirty years ago when few students applied and they had a need to fill seats, the "3 + 3" program has been set aside by almost all the nation's currently accredited 182 law schools. Thus, the catalog statement misleads students by implying that such programs exist, that they can skip their senior year and apply directly to law school, and that, somehow, UNCA has agreements with law schools allowing this. At an earlier stage of its development, the University appropriately might have encouraged such admissions, but now, as a recognized leader in undergraduate education, students should be advised that, if they stay at the University and complete their degrees, they will be stronger candidates overall for admission to professional and graduate schools.