Home / News / PSU and Washburn School of Law announce partnership 
Provost, Howard Smith talks during the announcement of the partnership between Washburn Law School and Pittsburg State University on Nov. 28. The partnership will allow those interested in law school to receive their undergraduate along with their law degree in 6 years instead of the typical 7 years. Alyssa Tyler 

PSU and Washburn School of Law announce partnership 

Provost, Howard Smith talks during the announcement of the partnership between Washburn Law School and Pittsburg State University on Nov. 28. The partnership will allow those interested in law school to receive their undergraduate along with their law degree in 6 years instead of the typical 7 years. Alyssa Tyler 

Alyssa Tyler editor in chief  

A new partnership between the Washburn School of Law and Pittsburg State University has been announced, giving students who are interested in a law degree to graduate sooner. The program is set to begin in August of 2023, and will not only affect students, but the regions that the future attorneys and lawyers will live and practice in.  

“We’re here to announce a very exciting partnership that PSU has completed with Washburn University School of Law… We have inked a partnership that will allow students to complete a bachelor’s degree as well as a law degree in six years total, three years here at Pittsburg State, and three years at Washburn School of Law,” said Shawn S. Leisinger Associate Dean for Centers and External Programs  

Another program offered at Washburn School of Law is the third year anywhere program. 

“Today we are going to talk about the 3+3 program here at Pittsburg State that allows students to take their fourth year of their undergraduate degree at the same time as their first year of law school. So, it cuts a year off. Washburn also has a third year anywhere program, so their third year of law school they could come out into the community and actually work with a firm, a judge, or a prosecutor office that they want to give back to. So, for practical purposes, in five years, rather than seven years traditionally, they come back out into the community,” Leisinger said.  

Washburn School of Law Dean Jeffrey Jackson spoke on the need for lawyers and attorneys to practice in rural areas in Kansas. 

“We have the rural law initiative. That we have recently rolled in to get people into smaller communities throughout the state. And we find that the number of them who have exposure, even if they’re not from these communities, end up liking it. And we have had quite a number that decided to stay there,” said Jackson. 

Washburn School of Law graduate and Kansas Supreme Court Justice Marla Luckert also attended the press conference.  

“You’ve heard about how students will benefit… I want to tell you Kansas will benefit, and Kansans will benefit. We have a critical shortage of attorneys in the state of Kansas. Especially in rural Kansas… Southeast Kansas only has 1/4 of the number of attorneys needed to meet that demand… We are excited to have this program that is one of many steps, hopefully, to encourage people to come back to their home. Even if it’s not their home, to come and explore the possibility of practicing in these rural areas.” 

The program is designed for freshman coming in, although sophomores and upperclassmen can participate in the program, if their degree audit allows it.  

“One of the things that Washburn University School of Law takes very seriously is our commitment to the state of Kansas,” said Jackson. “We produce most of the lawyers in the state and we feel it important to bring good lawyers to areas that may be underserved.” 

For students interested in the program, more information can be found at https://academics.pittstate.edu/academic-programs. Any questions can be directed to Pittsburg State University Pre-Law coordinator, Darren Botello-Samson.  

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