SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — A task force weighing whether to move the University of South Dakota School of Law to Sioux Falls is now considering a third option.

The task force met Wednesday to discuss potentially moving only third-year law students from Vermillion to Sioux Falls, the Argus Leader reported . Supporters said such a move could help students at the state’s only law school better connect with law firms and more internship opportunities.

The first option involves moving the entire law school to Sioux Falls. In addition to more internships and law firms, task force members said a larger city would attract more students and faculty.

The second option would keep the school at its current location in Vermillion. Some committee members have said uprooting the law school would not solve declining enrollment, lower bar pass rates and other issues.

South Dakota Supreme Court Chief Justice David Gilbertson, a member of the task force, warned: “Trying to make a connection between the (bar exam) pass rate decline and the fact that the school is in Vermillion is very dangerous.”

Another member, law professor Chris Hutton, said moving third-year students to Sioux Falls would only increase strain on law school faculty.

Students, faculty and business leaders have come forward with several questions, so it’s unclear if the task force is ready to reach a decision, said Mark Mickelson, chairman of group.

The committee hasn’t determined the cost of moving the entire law school to Sioux Falls, though members have decided a new building would be required. The group will meet again Oct. 6 in Vermillion.


Information from: Argus Leader, http://www.argusleader.com

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