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A Year of Alignment and Discovery

The 2015 UAlbany/Albany Law Affiliation Agreement event (l to r): Darius Shahinfar, Albany City Treasurer; State Assemblymember Patricia A. Fahy (109th District); State Senator Hugh T. Farley (49th District); Alicia Ouellette, President and Dean, Albany Law School; Former UAlbany President Robert J. Jones; Daniel P. Nolan, ‎President and CEO, Hugh Johnson Advisors, chair, Albany Law School Board of Trustees; Michael J. Castellana, President and CEO, SEFCU; State Senator Neil D. Breslin (44th District); State Senator George A. Amedore, Jr. (46th District); Interim Dean David Rousseau, UAlbany College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security and Cybersecurity; and Bethany Hicks, Albany Law School student. (Photo by Mark Schmidt)

ALBANY, N.Y. (October 4, 2016) — Since officially affiliating one year ago this month, the University at Albany and Albany Law School mark the anniversary with a range of achievements that have led to new opportunities for students, and additional research and grant prospects for faculty.

“The energy and enthusiasm for this affiliation from both campus communities has led to a wide range of planned accomplishments this year, and many more that developed after discovering and aligning each other’s assets,” said Alicia Ouellette, president and dean of Albany Law School.

The affiliation agreement promised several goals, and produced notable milestones. Some of the more significant achievements include:

  • An increase in the number of UAlbany students who applied and are now enrolled in the Law School’s class of 2019;
  • An increase in the number of UAlbany students in a 3 + 3 programs with the Law School, where the student’s fourth year at UAlbany is spent as a first-year of law school;
  • Earned the accreditation of The American Bar Association for the affiliation; and
  • Earned the approval of the American Bar Association's Council on Legal Education, the Law School's accrediting body.

Other areas of success include: cross registration of students on both campuses; joint research projects with faculty of both campuses, with the support of student interns; and joint seminars hosted together to discuss the research findings. Much of this work was the result of a collaborative venture fund that supported joint projects involving more than 80 faculty members from both campuses.

“We have discovered over the past year that this partnership strengthens both institutions by providing tremendous opportunities for our students and faculty to incorporate legal education into their knowledge base, whether they are studying biology, business, mathematics, atmospheric science, political science, social science, public health, fine arts, psychology or countless other fields,” said James R. Stellar, interim president, UAlbany.

Some First-Year Highlights

In February of this year, Albany Law School launched a concentration in Law and Cybersecurity in partnership with UAlbany’s College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security and Cybersecurity. The program is designed to prepare J.D. graduates to provide counsel on legal matters around a data breach, cybercrime, compliance issues, privacy laws, records management and more.

In addition, an enhanced 3+3 program centered on creating a heightened undergraduate experience for UAlbany pre-law students. UAlbany students in the program were given faculty mentors, attended seminars with law professors, gained exclusive access to the Albany Law admissions counselors, and were treated to an open house exclusively for UAlbany students.

This past summer, the UAlbany’s Center for International Development (CID) moved onto the Albany Law campus, next to the Government Law Center. The two organizations expect to find intersecting areas of work to enhance their efforts in the upcoming year.

Other potential growth areas include expanding the school’s six joint-degree programs – students combine the Master’s and J.D. degree – and growing the cross-campus presence so that more students are aware of the opportunities each campus offers.

The affiliation is loosely modeled after the longstanding and successful affiliation between Michigan State University and Detroit Law School. A team from UAlbany and Albany Law, led by Ouellette and Stellar, visited the Michigan schools, exposing the team to a viable road map for the future of the Albany affiliation.

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About the University at Albany
A comprehensive public research university, the University at Albany offers more than 120 undergraduate majors and minors and 125 master's, doctoral, and graduate certificate programs. UAlbany is a leader among all New York State colleges and universities in such diverse fields as atmospheric and environmental sciences, business, criminal justice, emergency preparedness, engineering and applied sciences, informatics, public administration, social welfare, and sociology taught by an extensive roster of faculty experts. It also offers expanded academic and research opportunities for students through an affiliation with Albany Law School. With a curriculum enhanced by 600 study-abroad opportunities, UAlbany launches great careers.