The Charleston School of Law (CSOL) is an independent for-profit, private law school in Charleston, South Carolina. Founded in 2003, the Charleston School of Law is one of only two law schools in South Carolina, the other being the University of South Carolina School of Law.
In 2002, prominent Charleston judges and attorneys started to work on establishing a new law school in Charleston to continue the Club’s 19th century tradition of law. The five Founders were Judge Alex Sanders (a former president of the College of Charleston and former Chief Judge of the South Carolina Court of Appeals), Ed Westbrook, Judge Robert Carr (a federal magistrate judge), Judge George Kosko (a federal magistrate judge), and Ralph McCullough. In 2003, the S.C. Commission on Higher Education granted a license to allow the Charleston School of Law to start accepting students in the fall of 2004.
In South Carolina, only graduates of ABA accredited law schools are permitted to sit for the bar exam. Because of built-in delays in the accreditation process, provisional accreditation cannot be achieved in less than three years, the length of law school. Therefore, achieving provisional accreditation from the ABA with minimal delays was critical if the first graduates were to be allowed to sit for the bar. The vote on provisional accreditation is a two-step process. First, in April 2006, the American Bar Association's Accreditation Committee recommended provisional accreditation. Second, that recommendation went to the ABA's Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar where a vote was deferred until December 2006. In anticipation of that vote, the school was asked by the ABA to address questions related to the for-profit institution's governance, library resources, and commitment to diversity. The delay until the December meeting of the Council was a problem since the deadline for registering for the bar exam for third-year students was January. On December 2, 2006, however, the Charleston School of Law announced that the ABA had granted provisional accreditation, the highest level of accreditation available at present; full accreditation cannot be granted until a school has been in operation for five years. Students graduating from a provisionally accredited law school enjoy the full rights guaranteed to fully accredited schools.
On May 19, 2007, the Charleston School of Law graduated its first class of 186 students at a ceremony held at the Citadel. Former South Carolina U.S. senator Ernest "Fritz" Hollings delivered the main remarks. He, South Carolina Chief Justice Jean H. Toal, and Fourth Circuit Chief Judge Wilkins received honorary degrees. Four graduating students were selected for induction into the newly reconstituted Forensic Club based on a Faculty recommendation and approval by the Founders. The four inductees were Cameron Blazer, M. Brooks Derrick, Charles Marchbanks, and Jeff Yungman.
The school's first graduates sat for the South Carolina bar exam in July 2007, and results were released by the South Carolina Supreme Court in October 2007. The school had an overall pass rate of 69.9%.
On November 29, 2007, the school's first dean, Richard Gershon, announced that he would be leaving the post to return to full time teaching at the school following a year of sabbatical. In December 2007, Andy Abrams (a member of the Faculty) was named as the interim dean of the law school.
Located in Charleston, SC, Charleston School of Law is in the heart of a city with deep historic roots. CSOL is housed in an antebellum railroad warehouse located on Mary St. near Charleston’s visitor center. Additionally, CSOL is in the process of acquiring additional facilities at the nearby intersection of Mary and Meeting Streets. Long term plans call for the continued expansion of the school in downtown Charleston.
The Charleston Law Review is an independent organization composed of second and third year students at the Charleston School of Law. The Law Review's primary objective is to foster the knowledge and insight of students, practitioners, scholars, and the judiciary through a traditional forum dedicated to the pursuit of innovative legal expression, composition, and scholarship. Members of the Law Review contribute to this objective by editing articles, writing notes, and actively participating in all aspects of the publication process.
The Charleston Law Review's inaugural journal was released in the Fall of 2006 and featured five articles by legal scholars on topics ranging from human trafficking to preservation of Gullah-Geechee culture. The Law Review published a second issue devoted to student works in the spring of 2007.
The Foreword of Volume 2, Issue 1 (Fall 2007) was written by Barack Obama, junior United States Senator from Illinois and a leading candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 2008 U.S. presidential election.
Sara Ruff was the inaugural editor-in-chief. The current editor-in-chief is George "Matt" Kendall. Katie Fowler has been elected to serve as the third editor-in-chief (2008-2009).
Founded in July 1997, The Federal Courts Law Review (FCLR) is an electronic law review dedicated to legal scholarship relating to federal courts. Articles are from scholars, judges and distinguished practitioners. The editorial board, composed primarily of United States Magistrate Judges and law school professors, uniquely combines the insight of the federal judiciary with the perspective of law school academics.
Charleston School of Law has been selected to oversee the publication of a printed version of the Federal Courts Law Review. This companion to the current online format is intended to cater to subscribers who would welcome a printed version. The printed version will also allow for inclusion of selected student works.
Susan Hill served as the student board's first editor-in-chief. The student board's current editor-in-chief is Angela Nussbaum.
The Maritime Law Bulletin (MALABU) is a periodical bulletin, edited by law students, focusing on significant maritime issues. First published in February 2006, MALABU will be the publishing arm of the new Charleston Maritime Law Institute at Charleston School of Law.
Charleston Maritime Law Institute (CMLI) is a collaborative effort involving students, professors and leading maritime lawyers and professionals from around the Southeast. In addition to promoting maritime legal studies at the school, CMLI will provide programs and seminars periodically on maritime matters.
MALABU's current editor-in-chief is Ben Hambright.
Ethnic Minorities and Nationalism in Southeast Asia. Edited by Thomas Engelbert and Andreas Schneider.(Review)
Apr 01, 2001; Ethnic Minorities and Nationalism in Southeast Asia. Edited by Thomas Engelbert and Andreas Schneider. Frankfurt am Main: Peter...