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Lewis and Clark College
College History and Location
Lewis and Clark College, a private liberal arts college in Portland, Oregon, was founded in 1867 as Albany Collegiate Institute by a group of Presbyterian pioneers in the Willamette Valley town of Albany 60 miles south of Portland. The College has always been coeducational, from the first class, which graduated in 1873.
By 1938 enrollment in Portland had outgrown that on the original campus, and all operations were moved to Portland. In 1942 the College trustees acquired the Lloyd Frank (of the historic Portland department store Meier & Frank) “Fir Acres” estate in southwest Portland, and adopted the name Lewis & Clark College as a “symbol of the pioneering spirit that had made and maintained the College.” Today, the three schools of the College and their supporting offices occupy a beautiful campus of 137 acres, centered on the historic Frank estate on Palatine Hill in Southwest Portland.
The three schools of the College include the Northwest School of Law, the Graduate School of Education, and the Northwest Writing Institute. All three schools embrace and promote the values expressed in the College's motto: Explorare, Discere, Sociare (to explore, to learn, to work together). The small class sizes, open academic environment, and extraordinary facilities of the College clearly demonstrate the continuing commitment to these values.
Northwest School of Law
Officially known as Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College, L&C Law was established in Portland as the state’s first law school in 1884. In 1915 the legislature decided to relocate the school South to Eugene, but the faculty and administration wanted to stay in Portland, and reorganized as a private institution. They established Northwestern College of Law, which operated as an evening school in downtown Portland for 50 years.
In 1965 the Law School merged with Lewis & Clark and was renamed Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College. Soon after, the Law School built a new campus, initiated a day division, and launched an aggressive library acquisition program.
Lewis & Clark Law School now enrolls 220-230 first-year students from approximately 2,500 applicants. Around 700 students attend, of which most are full-time day students, but about 25 percent opt for the part-time or evening program. The School offers studies and courses in Business and Commercial Law (including Tax Law), Environmental and Natural Resources Law, Intellectual Property Law, Public Interest Law, and an Indian Law Summer Program.
Most notable is the Environmental and Natural Resources Law program. Lewis & Clark Law School is an extraordinary place to study environmental and natural resources law. Consistently ranked one of the top environmental law programs in the nation by U.S. News and World Report, the program received the 2001 American Bar Association Award for Distinguished Achievement in Environmental Law.
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