More Joint Degrees Being Developed By Albany Law School And UAlbany
This week, Albany Law School announced a partnership with the University of Albany to create joint degree programs. Students might be able to begin enrolling in these degree programs as early as this fall. The two schools are actually separate of each other but have been planning to affiliate since last summer. Just last week, the schools set a 180-day deadline to have everything finalized.
So far, New York State has approved a certificate in health and human rights for students at both schools. According to Alicia Ouellette, dean of the law school, more degree programs are in the works. Two programs that are close to set are JD/MA programs in criminal justice and history. Other programs being considered are in cybersecurity, innovation and entrepreneurship, and financial market regulation.
Ouellette says the schools will allow cross-school registration, meaning students will be able to enroll and take courses in both schools. The two schools already run a 3+3 program in which students may earn an undergraduate degree from the University of Albany and a JD from Albany Law School.
While the schools will remain separate entities and financially independent, the relationship between the schools will deepen through cost-savings for students, expanded course and degree offerings, and joint research and funding initiatives. “This has been a relationship that has been building and we’re finding that there’s so much exciting opportunity around it,” Ouellette says.
Of course many law schools have been offering joint degrees for a while now. However, many of those schools are part of the same university and share financial responsibilities with them. Very few (if any) law schools partner with separate universities. Nevertheless, this is a clever and strategic tactic that could make some lower-ranked law schools more attractive to some applicants.
Or it could just be a waste. The market for students wanting degrees in criminal justice and law or entrepreneurship and law might be viable. But the market for a degree in history and law doesn’t seem to be great. Still, Albany’s approach is novel and might alleviate sinking application numbers.
Source: Albany Business Journal
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