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A new agreement between Syracuse University College of Law and Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College and Spelman College will fulfill a dual objective: diversifying the student body of the law school – and thus the legal profession – while also providing a pipeline for students from the three historically Black institutions to accelerate the time to their bachelor’s and juris doctor degrees.

The 3+3 agreement with the Atlanta University Center (AUC) schools would decrease the time it takes for students to earn their J.D. from seven years to six, reducing the cost of their education and allowing them to enter the workforce sooner. As part of Syracuse’s commitment to access and diversity in legal education, law school officials note that the program will additionally provide comprehensive outreach and supports to AUC students earlier in their higher education journey.

“While students are in this program – and they can indicate their interest in participating in this program as soon as they begin their undergraduate program – we intend to provide for them the kind of exposure to the practice and the profession, to lawyers that will help them master some of the subtle things about the way that law practice works, the way that law firms work [and] a lot of the language and the lingo that’s related to law so that they’re better prepared to be in law school and have a little bit of a leg up,” said Craig M. Boise, dean and professor of law at the Syracuse University College of Law.

Further, selected students will receive scholarships to offset the cost of their legal education, preparation for the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) and the opportunity to travel to Syracuse to get a sense of where “they will hopefully be studying law,” Boise said. Officials similarly anticipate giving AUC students access to Syracuse Law’s alumni base in Atlanta so they can shadow lawyers in practice or secure internships.

Another component of the new 3+3 agreement will be programming on “hot topics” in law. Officials aim for Syracuse law faculty members to travel to Atlanta to conduct presentations with students; […]

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