Law School Requests Extra Funding For Expansion
The University of Wyoming is requesting $12 million from the Legislature’s Joint Appropriations Committee to fund a $22 million renovation project.
The new request was not included in the school’s formal budget request vetted by the State Construction Department and Gov. Mark Gordon’s office last year, according to the Laramie Boomerang.
“We were designing the facility and didn’t know the cost of the facility over the summer,” College of Law Dean Klint Alexander told the Committee. “We did not want to come before you when we didn’t know what the cost was going to be, and that process played out between May and August 2019.”
The law school hopes to add about 19,000 square feet and renovate about 23,000 square feet of existing space.
The expansion plan, as reported by US News, is part of the University of Wyoming College of Law’s celebration of its centennial in September 2020.
The hope is to bring clinics, which provide the state with $3.5 million of free legal services annually, into the law school building.
“The annex space occupied by many of the clinics is inadequate and not conducive to meeting and interviewing clients,” according to American Bar Association representatives.
Clinics, according to Dean Alexander, are a big strength of Wyoming’s law education.
“We’re one of the few law schools in the record that can go on record with a clinic guarantee, and that’s a big selling point for our students,” Alexander says. “Due to that limited infrastructure (in the credit union building), it’s a struggle to run our clinics in a way that protects confidentiality and prevents conflicts of interest and protects files and other materials that come our way.”