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History

Founded in 1891 as Detroit College of Law, the Law College was the first law school in Detroit, and is one of the oldest continuously operating independent law schools in the United States.

 Before the founding of the Law College, the only way a Detroit resident could become a member of the bar without leaving the city to study was by “reading” law in local attorneys’ offices. The Law College’s founders were a group of such “readers”—law clerks and students in southeastern Michigan. As a result, during the first two years of the school’s history, its directors were themselves students—a unique situation.

The first class of 69 graduates included a future circuit court judge and a future ambassador. A woman in the first class and an African American in the second exemplified the Law College’s commitment to offering all sectors of the population an opportunity for a quality legal education.

Detroit College of Law affiliated with Michigan State University in 1995, expanding the school’s long-held tradition of educational excellence. This affiliation connected students to a wealth of resources and opportunities while preserving the school’s student-centric culture. The Law College moved to its current home in the heart of the MSU campus in East Lansing, Michigan, in 1997.

MSU Law remains a separate legal entity and is fully accredited by the American Bar Association.

Accrediting body:
The Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar of the American Bar Association
321 N. Clark Street, 21st Floor
Chicago, IL 60654
312-988-6738
312-988-5681 fax
legaled@americanbar.org


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