Here's a message from Dean Short regarding the developments and status of Texas A&M's law school venture:
Dear Texas Aggie Bar Association Members,
Howdy – and warmest greetings from the faculty, staff, students, and alumni of Texas Wesleyan University School of Law. This is an exciting time of the year for our law school, as we prepare to welcome another talented group of 1L students. And this year, the excitement level is even higher as details are finalized for our transition to Texas A&M University. We are absolutely thrilled to be joining the Aggie community, and I look forward to working with all of you and the Texas Aggie Bar Association in the future.
To keep you in the loop on our transition, I would like to provide a little background and a sense of what we expect to happen in the weeks ahead.
· We have worked closely with Texas A&M University and Texas Wesleyan University over the past year to ensure that all accreditations and approvals transfer to the new law school. In January, Texas A&M University was granted approval from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to offer a JD degree. And in June, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (the regional accrediting body for both universities) approved the acquisition.
·The final accreditation step in this process is the American Bar Association. Last fall, we submitted - after lengthy discussions with Texas A&M University - an application to the ABA to approve the acquisition and transfer accreditation to the new law school. After various other steps in the process were completed, the Accreditation Committee for the ABA’s Section on Legal Education recommended in June that our application be approved. On August 9th, representatives from Texas A&M University, Texas Wesleyan University, and I will appear before the ABA’s Council, which will ultimately decide whether to grant the application.
· If and when the Council approves our application, a series of steps will be set in motion to make sure enrollment statuses and financial aid awards are in place for our students. We expect the transition to Texas A&M University ownership to occur sometime around August 15th, just in time to begin fall classes on August 19th under new ownership.
· Although we have worked tirelessly over the last year to make sure this transition is a success, there are some aspects of our new operation and organization that will not be finalized by August 15th. We expect to have a period of transition - perhaps up to one year - as we work through all of those issues.
This is a momentous and historic time for our law school. I am very proud of the strong academic program we have built here and the successes our graduates have enjoyed. As a part of Texas A&M University, and with the support of our collective communities, I firmly believe that our brightest days are ahead. I look forward to the opportunity to share with you more about our school and our vision for its future. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me directly.
Aric K. Short Texas Wesleyan University School of Law
Interim Dean and Professor of Law