Law School under way at University of Mississippi

Law School under way at Univ. of Mississippi

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An AP Mississippi member exchange

OXFORD — Faculty at the University of Mississippi School of Law have something extra to be thankful for this year when they return from their holiday Monday: They’ll all be in new offices in the new $50 million law school building.

The faculty are the first to move in what is a three-phased relocation between the old and new law schools. The move will be completed in January as the law school transitions to its new home.

“It’s been a challenge,” said Richard Barnes, law professor and coordinator of the move.

“The difficult thing is that you have three different constituents: students, professional staff and faculty. Students don’t want to be disturbed during finals and the library has to be full service and stay in place until the last moment so the faculty accepted the role of going first.”

The university has hired a Tupelo-based company to move the faculty offices, which includes about 1,140 cartons of books and other materials.

An additional 700 cartons will be moved for the administration in mid-December, and then students and classrooms will move from Jan. 3 to Jan. 8.

The moving boxes were packed up and have been moved into a temporary trailer until Monday when the movers will unload everything into the new school.

“We are really excited about this building,” Barnes said. “Moves are hard, but just like moving from an old house to a new house, we are excited about moving into the new home.”

The University of Mississippi School of Law opened with seven students in 1854.

Today, the School of Law includes: the National Center for Remote Sensing, Air and Space Law, the National Center for Justice and the Rule of Law, the Mississippi Judicial College and the Mississippi Law Research Center.

Enrollment at the School of Law has averaged about 500 students for several years, and today there are more than 30 full-time and part-time faculty members. The law school has been in its current facility since 1978.

Plans for the new School of Law was announced in 2009 after formally launching a fundraising campaign for the new building.

The new school will include state-of-the-art classrooms and space for clinics. The building was constructed to recognized green-building standards and is certified with a Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design designation.

Melanie Addington/The Oxford Eagle