Paul L. Caron

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Penny-Pinching Alumni, High Tuition Are Issues In South Carolina Law School Dean Search

The State, Penny-Pinching Alumni, High Tuition Are Issues in USC Law School Dean Search:

South Carolina (2019)A search is underway for a new dean of the University of South Carolina law school, but whoever is chosen will confront a host of problems.

The problems include alumni who don’t give to the school, a sizable debt — around $40 million, according to news reports — for the still-unpaid for, new $80 million law school building, lack of diversity and high tuition that drives otherwise able students away. The law school is the state’s only public law school and its major institution for training lawyers. ...

The school’s money woes were paraded this week in a virtual interview with law school dean candidate William Hubbard, 68, a USC board of trustees member who some believe has the inside track on the job of the four finalist candidates. On Wednesday, lawyers around South Carolina and a sitting federal judge questioned Hubbard for 50 minutes. ...

The law school now gets a “subsidy” of about $7 million each year from USC, and “one of the new challenges of the new dean is ... to protect that,” Hubbard said. The law school’s endowment is only about $19-20 million, which is insignificant in comparison with many other law schools, said Hubbard. ...

Other law school dean candidates were also scheduled to be interviewed remotely. They are:

▪ David Thronson — a 1994 Harvard Law graduate and international human rights professor at Michigan State University College of Law. A Peace Corps veteran who served in Nepal and former public school mathematics teacher, he is also director of a center there for human rights of children and women.

▪ Susan Kuo — the USC law school associate dean for diversity and inclusion, who has won teaching awards and has taught criminal law, criminal procedure, federal courts and law and social justice classes. A graduate of Duke University and Vanderbilt Law School, she has clerked for a federal appeals court judge and worked as a special assistant U.S. Attorney in Atlanta.

▪ Joel Samuels — a USC law professor and director of the law school’s Rule of Law Collaborative, which oversees law development around the world. A Princeton graduate, he graduated from the University of Michigan Law School and has specialized, among other areas, in international law.

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