IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Western State College of Law has successfully leapt its final hurdle—confirmation of its continued American Bar Association accreditation under new ownership—to assure ongoing operation as a respected, long-established law school in Southern California. In August, a federal court approved acquisition of Western State by Westcliff University. In December, the ABA acquiesced in the transaction. Going forward, the school will operate as Western State College of Law at Westcliff University.
“This marks the successful end of a long and complicated journey,” said Dr. Anthony Lee, Westcliff CEO. “We’ve been operating the law school since September under contract, long enough to confirm our belief that it’s a terrific school with great staff, faculty, and students, and we’re very pleased the ABA voted in our favor. The loyalty of the students, staff, faculty, and alumni through these last few months has been inspiring.”
Founded in 1966, Western State College of Law is the oldest law school in Orange County, California. The college was granted American Bar Association status in 1998 and counts many prominent attorneys, judges, and politicians among its graduates. Western State was a campus of Argosy University, owned by Dream Center Education Holdings, LLC., up until earlier this year when it became the unfortunate victim of the financial problems of its parent, which entered receivership last January.
“We knew this was a school worth saving,” said Lee. “Everyone was eager to help: the federal court, the ABA, the U.S. Department of Education, the Western Association of School and Colleges, and the California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education. Each of them went far out of their way for us. For that, we are very grateful.”
Westcliff, whose board recently approved a conversion to a Public Benefit Corporation status, began exploring the possibility of acquiring Western State in January of this year and worked very closely with the law school’s experienced leadership team throughout the process. Allen Easley, Western State’s dean for the last 5 years, noted that “the decision by Westcliff University to acquire Western State and the ABA’s approval of that acquisition preserve an important institution with a legacy of producing great lawyers and leaders in the Orange County legal community.”
Westcliff University, founded in 1993, is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC). It is a globally recognized, nationally and regionally accredited private institution providing practical Business, STEM, and Education bachelors, masters and doctoral degree programs with concentrations, and certificate programs. Westcliff programs are dedicated toward preparing students holistically—personally, academically, and professionally—for relevant career growth.