By Whitney Harder
(Nov. 18, 2015) — A new collaboration between the University of Kentucky College of Law and College of Arts and Sciences will allow students seeking a law degree to save time and money by graduating in six years instead of seven.
The UK BLUE (Bachelor-to-Law Undergraduate Education) program is open to incoming freshmen who know early on they plan to pursue a law degree. The program reduces total tuition costs by one year and exposes students to the practice and study of law early on in their undergraduate career.
"For highly motivated, exceptional students, this is a targeted pathway to help them reach their career goals," said Sarah Ballard, an academic advisor in the College of Arts and Sciences.
Participating students will complete their undergraduate coursework in three years and begin law school curriculum, pending admission to the UK College of Law, in the fourth year. Students will still receive their bachelor's degree in May of year four. Following two additional years of law courses, they will receive their juris doctor degree in May of year six.
"Over the course of their initial three years, students will also be offered enrichment activities in the College of Law that acquaint them with the legal, clinical, community service, and career opportunities that a law degree makes possible," Ballard said.
A number of graduates with degrees in English, history and political science matriculate to the UK College of Law. In the fall of 2015, approximately 40 students from these majors enrolled at UK College of Law. For this reason, the BLUE program will initially offer admitted students the opportunity to major in one of those three areas of study.
A minimum ACT score of 29 or SAT score of 1290 (critical reading and mathematics scores only) and a minimum high school unweighted GPA of 3.5 is necessary to be considered.
The application deadline for fall 2016 is Dec. 1.
“The BLUE program was designed with students in mind," said David A. Brennen, dean of the UK College of Law. "The program allows students to save money in a time when education costs continue to rise. Finishing the undergraduate degree and J.D. degree in less time means less tuition being paid by students, while concurrently allowing them to get out into the workforce a year earlier. This program, coupled with UK Law’s ranking as the No. 4 Best Value Law School in the country, makes UK Law a great choice in legal education.”
For more information, visit https://www.as.uky.edu/uk-blue-overview.