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March 14, 2022

Connecting with Law Schools

To provide a consistent pathway for the students, the community college program must have contacts with law schools that will be able to provide students with pre-law guidance, resources, and support. 

An excellent example of a successful four-year college and law school collaboration is the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law Pathway to the Law

The community college program must:

  • Identify potential law school partners considering the following factors:
    • Regional law schools in proximity to community college
    • Law schools from different law school ranking levels 
    • The law school’s tuition and scholarships, and study body size 
    • Law school faculty and student body demographics 
    • Availability of student affinity organization 
    • Availability of an academic support program 
    • Availability of diversity and inclusion officer 

  • Draft an agreement or Memorandum of Understanding 
    Document the purpose and responsibilities of partners. The agreement could include: Effective dates; Purpose; Identities of the partners; Responsibilities of partners; and Definition of terms 
  • Gain Law school commitment
    • Law school to appoint at least one individual to serve as a Liaison from the law school to the pre-law pathway program. The Liaison will: 
      • Champion the pre-law pathway program at the law school; 
      • Attend community college classes, activities or events to educate students and provide insights on applying to law school, taking the LSAT, law school teaching and courses, career advising, and financial aid; 
      • Communicate with the community colleges to get students involved in activities and programs sponsored at the law school, such as lectures, pre-law training programs, law firm receptions, judges' nights, moot court, volunteer opportunities to serve as mock jurors or organize law firm interview programs, and bar related activities; and
      • Maintain data on participating Student enrollment in the law school and communicate that to the Community College Program within state and federal privacy laws.  
    • Facilitate the Law school admissions process:  
      • Waive the application fee for participating pre-law students 
  • Establish communication between community college program advisor and law school admissions staff