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University of South Carolina (School of Law)




The mission of the University of South Carolina School of Law, in light of its special obligation as the only law school in the state, is to provide broad access to a high quality legal education and prepare graduates for highly competent performance in private practice, public service and private business; conduct research and publish significant scholarship on legal and policy issues of national, regional and state importance; and provide service to the legal profession, government and private business.

The goal of the School of Law in the next five years is to become significantly stronger with quality comparable to the region’s strongest public law schools. Building on progress in the last five years, the major goals of the School of Law will be stronger scholarly productivity, elevation of the law library to a major research facility, a new building, students with greater academic potential and diversity, increased support from external funding sources and continued excellence in teaching and service.

For the 2003-04 academic year, important objectives for the School of Law will be to recruit several diverse faculty members with a demonstrated commitment and potential for outstanding scholarly productivity, secure additional state bonding authority for a new physical facility, secure additional external funding to support the mission of the school, enroll students of high academic potential and strengthen the law library.

The school’s mission, included in the executive summary, furthers the university’s goal of becoming a major research institution by emphasizing significant research and scholarship and continued excellence in teaching and community engagement through strong service. The School of Law, as the only law school in South Carolina, makes a unique contribution to the University as the only provider of significant research and scholarship on legal issues and the only provider of lawyers for the state’s growing legal profession. Many of the school’s graduates become leaders in the legal profession with distinguished careers in national, state and local public service. The School of Law, through its library and the many service activities of faculty and professional staff, provides major service to the state’s legal community and government which would otherwise not be available.

The School of Law seeks to enroll qualified students who will enhance and embrace the school's rigorous educational environment and, as graduates, make positive societal contributions to South Carolina, the region and the nation. In making admissions decisions, the Faculty Committee on Admissions employs a holistic approach, taking into account all information available about each candidate. No single factor is conclusive. While undergraduate GPA and the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) are emphasized, the committee's decision is also influenced by other factors including the applicant's personal statement, employment or other life experience, residency, letters of recommendation and contribution to a diverse educational environment.

The University of South Carolina School of Law is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools and the Order of the Coif. The mission of the School of Law is to teach law through in-depth study; to contribute through faculty and student research to the common good, to the fund of legal knowledge, and to legal development and reform; and to cooperate with state government, the community, and the organized Bar in developing and implementing appropriate programs in legal research, law reform, criminal justice reform, and continuing legal education.

The School of Law houses a major research library with a collection of about 500,000 volumes and extensive computer-assisted research capabilities including LEXIS/NEXIS, WESTLAW, and LOISLAW.

Students at the School of Law enjoy all of the resources of the University of South Carolina. The University is a member of the Southeastern Conference and boasts several nationally ranked athletic teams. The new state-of-the-art Strom Thurmond Wellness and Fitness Center is located just a block from the School of Law and offers an array of physical activities including fitness classes; weight training; an indoor jogging track; basketball, racquetball, and squash; a climbing wall; indoor and outdoor pools; and sand volleyball.

The University was chartered in 1801 as South Carolina College, and is entering its third century on its original site in Columbia, the state capital. The campus has grown from its origins of one building on the historic Horseshoe to 155 facilities on 358 acres. The historic Horseshoe is a tree shaded area surrounded by restored 19th-century buildings, many of which serve their original functions. By contrast, the remainder of the campus is composed of contemporary facilities. The University enrolls more than 25,000 students on the Columbia campus and offers more than 350 undergraduate and graduate courses of study, many of which have been widely recognized for their academic excellence. Students come to the University of South Carolina from all 50 states and more than 100 countries.

Campus Recreation maintains two facilities enclosing 400,000 square feet of space. The Blatt PE Center is located in the middle of campus, adjacent to the large recreational field complex. The newer Strom Thurmond Wellness & Fitness Center is set on the south west corner of Assembly and Blossom Streets. Both facilities feature open recreation areas for basketball, volleyball, badminton, racquetball, handball and squash, as well as group fitness classes. The STWFC also features an indoor climbing wall and Outdoor Recreation Office for trip planning. Students, faculty and staff are welcome at both facilities.

The School of Law offers a full-time day program leading to the Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree. To earn the J.D., a student must successfully complete 90 semester hours of course work, including six semesters of resident study. In each of these semesters, students must register for a minimum of 12 credit hours. In addition, students must successfully complete a minimum of 10 credit hours each semester. A student may graduate in two and one-half years by enrolling as a full-time student in two summer sessions.

The School of Law, in cooperation with other graduate programs at the University, offers the following combined J.D. and master's programs:

* Law and International Business Administration
(J.D./I.M.B.A. )
* Law and Public Administration (J.D./M.P.A.)
* Law and Criminology and Criminal Justice (J.D./M.A.)
* Law and Human Resources (J.D./M.H.R.)
* Law and Economics (J.D./M.A.)
* Law and Accountancy (J.D./M.ACC.)
* Law and Social Work (J.D./M.S.W.)
* Law and Health Administration (J.D./M.H.A.)
* Law and Earth and Environmental Resources
Management (J.D./M.E.E.R.M.)
* Law with Master's of Studies in Environmental Law
from Vermont Law School (J.D./M.S.E.L.)

Dual degree programs can usually be completed in four years. Students enrolled in these programs may receive up to nine hours of law school credit for work successfully completed in their other field of study. Most students begin their program of study in the School of Law with the remaining years divided between both programs.

Dual degree candidates must apply to both programs. Students may apply to their chosen master's program at the time that they apply to the School of Law or during the first year at the School of Law. Acceptance into a master's program does not affect the decision of the School of Law. Upon acceptance by both programs, students must complete a joint degree form. Students should request this form directly from the Office of Admissions at the School of Law.

The upper-level curriculum is structured to encourage second-year students to take fundamental courses on the rules of civil procedure, business corporations, evidence, income tax and trusts and estates. Other basic courses are available to ensure that students obtain a sound, general legal education and to prepare students to specialize in a specific area, such as business law or litigation.

The School of Law offers advanced courses that allow detailed study of areas such as business and commercial law, tax and estate planning, environmental law and litigation. Students normally take these courses in their third year. Because of the diverse career paths of law graduates, the curriculum is designed to allow students interested in either general practice or a highly specialized field to pursue their interests in three years of legal study.

The upper-level curriculum also offers skills training for students in client contact clinics and a wide range of simulation courses. In addition to the traditional trial advocacy course, the School of Law offers a summer two-week intensive trial advocacy course and a criminal trial practice course. The core professional skills course is Interviewing, Counseling, and Negotiation, which is offered every semester.



School name:University of South CarolinaSchool of Law
Address:701 South Main Street
Zip & city:SC 29208 South Carolina
Phone:803-777-6605
Web:http://www.law.sc.edu
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