So you want to go to law school. Why should you consider us, the UNT Dallas College of Law, a brand new school? Without making any extravagant promises, I can think of a few reasons, and not simply because I am the Dean.
Our goal is to be a teaching law school, concentrating on student learning, but with a different vision of what that means. For one thing, in the first year and beyond, your courses will include periodic feedback and assessments during the course, not the usual single test at the end of each semester. This will help you know how well you are learning the material, and how to improve. It also will help us monitor how effectively we are teaching. We don’t want anyone to fall behind if we can prevent it. So we will be challenging you, but we will also be supportive.
Another goal is for you to spend as much time as possible "doing" law, and not just studying law. Most of our upper level courses will have a "lab" component in which you will apply the subject matter of the course through activities that law practice involves. We also will have opportunities for you to work with and be mentored by practicing lawyers. And because we have a terrific location right in downtown Dallas, we are in proximity to many of the most outstanding lawyers in our region. While you may not leave our law school or any law school with all the skills of an experienced lawyer, we will do our best to get you as close to that objective as we can.
We also understand that the law and the legal profession are in the midst of transformational change, which means that the practice of tomorrow will be substantially different from the practice of today. We will do our utmost to understand the change that is coming and to alert our students to the opportunities that the change presents for them.
Finally, to address the issue of ballooning tuition costs, our plan is to set our tuition at a reasonable level to do our part to reduce the debt burden facing so many law school graduates today. We believe it is possible to charge an affordable tuition rate and, at the same time, to equip you with the core competencies necessary to become an effective lawyer.
Law school is not easy. We will require you to work hard. Law practice is not easy. Representing people in their most important affairs is hard work. But, being a lawyer is a unique and rewarding opportunity to help others structure their lives in accordance with the law. It is a high calling.
If you are ready to strive and to learn, we are ready to teach you and to prepare you, to the best of our ability, to be a lawyer.
Royal Furgeson, Dean
UNT Dallas College of Law