A note from Dean Winick…
I am pleased to announce that the State Bar Committee of Bar Examiners has approved MCL’s application to offer a new hybrid online JD degree program. The hybrid online JD program will follow the same 90-unit JD curriculum that is required for our traditional residential degree programs. The difference will be in the delivery methodology, not in the content
The hybrid online JD program will be based at our Santa Cruz satellite campus where students will successfully complete their first-year classes in traditional residential courses before transitioning to online courses for upper division classes starting in year two. This means that first-year students enrolling in the hybrid online JD program at the Santa Cruz satellite campus starting Fall 2018 will be able to complete their JD degree in Santa Cruz without being required to commute to Seaside for their upper-division courses. In fact, the increasingly difficult evening commute between Santa Cruz and Seaside is the reason that we are starting this program in Santa Cruz. Of course, Santa Cruz students who wish to complete their degree program by commuting to the residential program at Seaside will be welcome to do so
We also believe that this program will open up opportunities for potential students in distant areas of Monterey, Santa Cruz, and San Benito Counties who will consider commuting to either Santa Cruz or Seaside for their initial year . . . knowing that they can complete their upper division courses in the hybrid online JD degree program
Convincing the State Bar of California to allow an accredited hybrid online JD program has been a ten+ year journey. The Committee of Bar Examiners only voted to allow this type of a pilot program this past November. As a result, we are one of only two California accredited law schools that have been granted authority to offer a hybrid online JD program. The other is Santa Barbara & Ventura Colleges of Law. They also will be starting their first cohort of hybrid JD students in Fall 2018
For more information, I am attaching the press release that we released this week
I welcome your questions as we work to develop a rigorous hybrid online JD program
that will continue our dedication to providing the communities that we serve with
a high quality accessible legal education.
Mitch L. Winick
President and Dean
Monterey College of Law
Monterey College of Law Announces New Hybrid Online J.D. Degree Program
Seaside, Calif., April 15, 2018—Monterey College of Law (MCL) has announced a new hybrid J.D. law degree that will allow students to complete up to 70% of their law school curriculum online. As an accredited law school, MCL received approval from the State Bar of California Committee of Bar Examiners to initiate the new degree program for Fall 2018. The innovative new degree program will be one of the first hybrid law degree programs offered in California. “MCL has been working with the Committee of Bar Examiners for many years to develop appropriate standards and guidelines for distance education,” said Mitchel L. Winick, President and Dean of MCL. “By adding this degree option to our traditional residential J.D. program, we are providing students with a valuable new learning opportunity,” said Winick.
MCL will initially offer the part-time hybrid degree program starting Fall 2018 through its Santa Cruz satellite campus. Students will complete their first year of classes in a traditional classroom setting and then participate in upper division courses utilizing distance education technology. “Although it has taken years to develop this program and have it accepted by the State Bar, we knew that it was critical to demonstrate that the course content and delivery are equally as rigorous and comprehensive as a traditional J.D. program,” said Elizabeth Xyr, MCL’s academic dean in charge of the new program.
It is not surprising that MCL is one of the first accredited law schools to integrate distance education into their curriculum. MCL has been known as an innovator in legal education, being the first U.S. law school to issue iPads to students and faculty (2010), the first California law school to require mediation certification as a requirement for the J.D. degree (2011), and the first California accredited law school to offer a concurrent Master of Legal Studies and J.D. degree program (2013).
About Monterey College of Law:
Monterey College of Law was founded more than 45 years ago by a group of lawyers and judges who wanted to bring quality local legal education to the California Central Coast. The institution has grown from its main Monterey College of Law campus in Seaside, California to now include two accredited branch campuses –
San Luis Obispo College of Law and Kern County College of Law – and a satellite MCL campus in Santa Cruz. Under California law, as a state-accredited law school, qualified applicants are not required to have a bachelor’s degree and may apply with an A.A. degree or at least 60-units of undergraduate studies. Our regular students are also not required to take and pass the California First Year Law Student Exam, otherwise known as the Baby Bar.