Collaboration Between University And Law School Offers Dual Degree

This year, Boston College will begin offering a dual degree program for students interested in Law School.

The “3+3” Program allows students to receive both an undergraduate degree and law degree from BC in six years, reducing the time and cost of obtaining a law degree. Students apply to the program as juniors, and if admitted, can skip their senior year and switch right into the law school.

“This program may provide an attractive option for a small number of highly motivated and exceptionally well-qualified students who are certain they want to attend law school and who possess the skills and desires to be successful in expediting their legal studies,” said Rev. Gregory Kalscheur, S.J., dean of the Morrissey College of Arts & Sciences, who formerly worked at BC Law School.

BC Law’s 3+3 Program will not be the first dual degree program at BC.

“There are a number of fifth year MA and dual degree programs,” said Akua Sarr, associate dean of MCAS and director of the academic advising center. “But this program is unique in that it is an accelerated admission to Law School.”

The application process, he said, is much the same as a senior who is applying to Law School. In order to apply, students must have a certain GPA and LSAT score and have successfully completed all requirements for an undergraduate major. If a student is accepted into the program, he or she will obtain an undergraduate degree after the first year in the law program and his or her law degree after the third year in the law program.

Students applying to the 3+3 Program, he added, do not have to have studied a particular subject in order to be accepted.

“Students should study things that they are passionate about and know that Law School is still an option,” Rougeau said.
Assuming that those in the program meet undergraduate requirements in their fourth year, they will be able to walk with their class at graduation, Sarr said.

Students guaranteed four years of housing will not be given the fourth year of housing if they choose enroll in the program.
Once becoming a fourth-year in the program, the students will completely transition to the Law School, said John Stachniewicz, associate dean for Administration & Finance at BC Law School.

Many other universities have implemented the same program, including Georgetown University and Columbia University, Stachniewicz said. At these other schools where the 3+3 Program has been implemented, only about four students have chosen to enroll in it, he said. He believes that this may be attributed to the fact that students have to give up their senior year.

“For a very small number of Morrissey College students who know they want to attend the Boston College Law School, this program will provide a more affordable and seamless option for pursuing that path,” Kalscheur said.

Featured Image by John Wiley / Heights Editor

September 10, 2015

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