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Media Tap Deans on Emerging Trends in Legal Education

March 12, 2013

The Philadelphia Inquirer and the New Jersey Spotlight tapped Dean Roger Dennis and Senior Associate Dean Daniel Filler, respectively, for their insights on the evolving state of legal education. 

A proposal the American Bar Association is considering to reduce the number of credits required for a J.D. degree is “the wrong solution to the right problem,” Dennis told the Philadelphia Inquirer in an article published March 4. The ABA is reviewing the proposal as a means to alleviate debt incurred by law students enrolled in three-year degree programs.

Students need to be prepared to practice effectively, he said, and intensifying training for practical skills rather than diluting it would be a better approach. 

Separately, Filler commented on Rutgers University's proposed solution to a changing legal education environment.  As the New Jersey Spotlight reported on March 11, Rutgers University will be merging its two law schools, Rutgers Newark and Rutgers Camden into one law school.  While the campuses are being left intact in their current locations, some speculate that Rutgers may eventually consolidate the two campuses into one campus located in New Brunswick.  While such a move would make it easier "to use law school to further broaden the agenda of Rutgers University," it would also allow the institution to promote a unified message, Filler said.  Consolidation might also increase the intellectual potency of the institution and promote the creation of joint degree programs, Filler added.