Stillman College and SIU sign agreement for law school program

TUSCALOOSA, AL — Stillman College and Southern Illinois University Carbondale signed a memorandum of understanding on Wednesday to help students enroll in and graduate from SIU Law School.

Stillman College President Cynthia Warrick said the program will allow selected students to participate in a pre-law summer program to expose them to the rigor and policies of law school admissions.

“We are also looking to advance similar programs in pre-health professions for students at Stillman Biomedical Academy with SIU,” she said. “Collaborative efforts like this will ensure that Stillman students are competitive for entrance and success in law school and other professional programs. We are grateful to SIU for creating this opportunity. .”

The agreement also includes other options for students who plan to continue their studies after obtaining their bachelor’s degree.

Camille Davidson, dean of the SIU law school, noted in a press release Wednesday that about two-thirds of minority applicants who apply to law school are not accepted primarily due to low scores. the Law School Admission Test (LSAT).

For example, Davidson said there were 246 law school students in October 2021, of whom 17, or 7%, were black. Additionally, the SIU law school had 41 minority students, including women, last fall.

“We are committed to being an anti-racist and inclusive law school,” Davidson said. “The only way to have real access to justice is to train lawyers from diverse backgrounds. Students from underrepresented populations are often not exposed to the study of law, and many who are interested “are unprepared for the application and admissions process. Building partnerships with HBCUs and other minority-serving institutions, like Stillman, will help the SIU law school to diversify.”

In addition to the agreement with the law school, a new summer program is also in the works.

The program will bring 15 students from across the country to the UES campus, May 25-29, to explore legal careers, understand the law school application process, and begin preparing for the LSAT while honing skills. skills needed in law school, such as understanding how to read and analyze a case.

“We will answer ‘Why law school?’ We want to provide these students with the resources to successfully apply for and graduate from law school,” Davidson said. “Like SIU, Stillman is located in a rural area and many students are first-generation students.”

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