CSUN, Southwestern Law School to Offer 3+3 Program for Northridge Undergrads

Southwestern Law School

Southwestern Law School

Southwestern Law School and California State University, Northridge have established an accelerated multiple-degree program through which students can earn both their Bachelor of Arts and Juris Doctor degrees in six years, rather than the usual seven.

Students participating in the 3+3 B.A./J.D. Program will have their first year of law school count as the fourth year of their undergraduate education. Students admitted to Southwestern through the program will receive $10,000 Wildman/Schumacher entering-student scholarships, which may be renewable in subsequent years depending on academic performance. CSUN will begin recruiting students for the program this year. The first class is expected to enroll in the fall of 2014, and initial enrollment is expected to be up to 35 students drawn from any department on the Northridge campus.

“I am pleased CSUN is partnering with Southwestern to give students who are committed to pursuing a career in law an opportunity to get a head start on achieving their goal,” said CSUN President Dianne F. Harrison. “It is another example of CSUN’s commitment to find innovative ways to help students advance, and I am grateful to the staff at both institutions who made this program a reality.”

Southwestern Dean Austen Parrish said the program provides his institution “with another important avenue for encouraging promising undergraduate students from a wide range of backgrounds to pursue a legal education at Southwestern.”

“This is a natural partnership for our two schools, both having long-held extensive connections to Southern California,” Parrish said. “It is notable that there are more CSUN graduates serving in the Los Angeles-area judiciary than from any other undergraduate institution — a heritage that is similar to Southwestern’s. CSUN also sponsors an extensive judicial internship program for students with the L.A. County Superior Courts, as does Southwestern.”

Stella Theodoulou, dean of CSUN’s College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, played a key role in developing the program.

“This is truly a wonderful path for our students who know early on that they wish to pursue graduate education in law,” Theodoulou said. “A CSUN-Southwestern program is a significant extension of both institutions’ commitment to providing our students with a relevant educational experience so that they are competitive members of the region’s workforce and future leaders of California.”

Southwestern trustee Lauren Leichtman, chief executive officer of Levine Leichtman Capital Partners, is a prominent graduate of Southwestern and CSUN, and was honored with CSUN’s Distinguished Alumni Award in 2010.

“I am so pleased to see this program launched,” she said. “My education at both institutions helped prepare me for rewarding leadership positions in law, business and philanthropy, so I know this partnership represents a unique opportunity for outstanding CSUN students who want to earn their undergraduate and law degrees on an accelerated timeline.”

For more information and the program requirements, click here.  Those with questions about the program can contact Robert Mena, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs at Southwestern,  at rmena@swlaw.edu or (213) 738-6716.

With a long-standing emphasis on diversity, public service and innovative programs, and a mid-city campus featuring a world-renowned Art Deco landmark building, Southwestern Law School reflects the vibrancy of Los Angeles and provides an ideal setting for law study. Founded in 1911 as an independent, nonprofit, nonsectarian institution, Southwestern is fully approved by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools. It is the only law school to offer four Juris Doctor courses of study that differ in scheduling and instructional approach, including traditional full- and part-time programs as well as a unique two-year accelerated curriculum. Southwestern also offers a concurrent J.D./MBA program with The Drucker Graduate School of Management; a J.D./M.A. program in negotiation with California State University, Dominguez Hills; a public policy certificate program with the Pardee RAND Graduate School; a bioscience industry certificate program with the Keck Graduate Institute; and LL.M. programs in entertainment and media law and general studies. With a reputation for graduating lawyers who are well-rounded, entrepreneurial and prepared for practice, Southwestern’s 12,000 alumni include prominent public officials – from members of Congress to mayors, and more than 200 judges – as well as founders of major law firms and general counsels of multinational corporations. The law school has strong ties to the legal, business, and civic sectors, and its Biederman Entertainment and Media Law Institute, closely linked to the entertainment industry in Hollywood and internationally, offers the most comprehensive entertainment, media and intellectual property curriculum in the United States.

As part of the 23-campus California State University system, CSUN is one of the largest universities in the nation, enrolling more than 38,000 full- and part-time students. Cal State Northridge has nine colleges and more than 2,000 faculty members who teach courses leading to bachelor’s degrees in 69 disciplines, master’s degrees in 58 fields and doctorates in educational leadership and physical therapy, as well as 28 teaching credential programs. Founded in 1958, CSUN is a vibrant and global community located on 356-acres in the heart of Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley. Its new Valley Performing Arts Center and Student Recreation Center attest to the campus’ commitment to providing students and the community with world-class, state-of-the-art cultural and academic facilities.

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