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Pre-law program begins
Organization helps students prepare for law school

Skiff Staff

Since TCU does not have a law school, a new program is being developed to help students who are interested in going to law school, said Carolyn Barton, a coordinator for the program.

The State Bar of Texas Pre-Law Student Affiliate Program is a new affiliate of the State of Texas Bar Association. It has been embraced by 15 Texas universities, including TCU, in an effort to provide the tools needed to help students interested in attending law school.

Donald Jackson, a political science professor and lawyer, said TCU students interested in law school need an outlet that can provide entrance by application into the State Bar of Texas Association.

“The association requires that universities have affiliate programs so students can apply for the bar,” Jackson said.

Jackson presented the idea of bringing the student affiliate program to TCU in one of his pre-law classes.

Shalene Kelly, a junior English major, is helping coordinate the program with Barton, a sophomore English and political science major.

Kelly said the majority of the class showed interest in having the program because there is no law school at TCU, so a campus organization is needed to help pre-law students become active in the field and get informed.

“The existing Law Student Affiliate Program is for current law students only,” Kelly said.

Barton said universities that have law schools such as the University of Texas, are more informed about events such as “lobbying days” and various legal fairs, which are open to law student and pre-law student participation.

She said there are tentative plans to bring in lawyers, judges and law students to speak about their experiences and to advise TCU students.

The program also plans to arrange LSAT, LCAT and GRE mentoring with national testing companies such as Kaplan and Princeton Review. Students can also receive test preparation for entrance exams, mentoring, information and networking through the program.

Emily Marriott, a freshman accounting and business major, said she plans to participate in the pre-law program and said the program will not only provide her with the information she needs, but it will also open doors in the law field for future jobs and internships.

Marriott said the program could impact TCU admissions because graduating seniors who are interested in law could recognize the benefits of having the pre-law student program on campus.

“I came to TCU because I liked the business program and wanted to complete my undergraduate work here, so this will be effective,” Marriott said.

The structure of the program will be arranged by the student members, Jackson said.

“Students will arrange the type of program responsive to what they want,” Jackson said. “After that, it is easy for me to get the lawyers, law students and testing companies to come here.”

The first meeting will be an open forum to discuss goals and design a structure for the program.

The Texas State Bar Pre-Law Student Affiliate Program will meet at 6 p.m. tonight in Sadler Hall, Room 203.


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