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Law School Adds Library in ABA Bid

January 06, 1998|MIMI KO CRUZ

Western State University College of Law has built a library in its quest to become nationally accredited.

The 31,000-square-foot library features a state-of-the-art computer lab, a 142,680-volume collection and several study rooms. It is open to students, lawyers and judges.

The school, founded 31 years ago, has received accreditation from the Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California and the Western Assn. of Schools and Colleges. But it has yet to receive accreditation from the American Bar Assn., the nationwide trade group for lawyers and judges that offers what is considered the most prestigious accreditation.

Western State applied for ABA accreditation in the late 1980s but was denied. School officials expect this latest effort will succeed.

The three-story library, which opened in October, is one reason for the optimism, said Dennis R. Honabach, president and dean of the college.

He said the college also has added courses and wired classrooms with the latest technology to "better equip students in the rapidly changing legal environment."

He said ABA inspectors visited the campus last fall as part of the accreditation application process. The inspectors will make a recommendation to the ABA board.

Only one Orange County law school--Whittier Law School in Costa Mesa--is ABA accredited.

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