UIdaho opens Boise building, plans for first years in 2017

The University of Idaho College of Law plans to offer first-year classes to law students in Boise in the fall 2017. Classes will be taught at the new Idaho Law and Justice Learning Center (ILJLC), which opened in August.

Idaho law students attend their first year in Moscow. Second- and third-year students have the option of completing their educations in either Moscow or Boise. The addition of first-year classes in Boise will make a Juris Doctor degree fully available on either campus.

“We are thrilled to offer what we believe will be a world-class legal education,” said Mark Adams, dean of the College of Law. “The first-year option in Boise has been part of our strategic vision all along, and the planning processes to make it a reality are officially beginning. It’s a lengthy process involving conversations and input from many important players, including our faculty, and the approvals of the Idaho State Board of Education and the American Bar Association.”

The University of Idaho is located in Moscow, in the far north of the state, which is sparsely populated. Boise, the state capital, is the largest metropolitan region in the state with more than 600,000 people. It is three hours south of Moscow. 

The University of Idaho hoped to launch a satellite campus in Boise, but was rebuffed by the Idaho legislature in 2008. So it sought to add the program one year at a time. It opened a campus for third-year students in 2010, and added courses for second-year students in 2014.

The Idaho Law and Justice Learning Center (ILJLC) is housed in the historic Ada County Courthouse and home to the Idaho State Law Library.

 “It is important to give our students a choice,” Adams said. “We have one outstanding law program, and with this dual-campus model, students will have more opportunities than a traditional law school offers. Providing options for students with different needs and wants sets UI’s College of Law apart. The first-year option in Boise is the exciting, final addition to our dual-campus model.”