WILLIAMSBURG -- The College of William and Mary has informed the American Bar Association that the only option regarding the crowded facilities of Marshall-Wythe School of Law is a new building.
Dr. Thomas A. Graves Jr., college president, and Professor Emeric Fischer, acting dean of the law school, in a letter portions of which were made public Monday, said the solution is simply the new building, which William and Mary has proposed adjacent to the planned National Center for State Courts.
Alternatives have been proposed for "regrouping on an interim basis" of all the law school functions into Marshall-Wythe and adjacent Old Rogers Hall.
Graves and Fischer said, however, on the basis of architectural recommendation, a major renovation of both buildings would be required with the vacating of the facilities for at least 20 months.
"This we have concluded is logistically and financially impractical, if not impossible. Therefore, we have concluded that, during this interim period [while awaiting a decision of the General Assembly on whether funding for the new building will be available], it is best to remain in the present facilities," the letter said.
The communication was to James P. White, consultant on legal education to the American Bar Association, who has visited the campus at least three times this year in preparing his report which last year called the present law school facilities "the worst" in the nation.
The crowding, along with several other matters, forced the ABA to tell the college in September that accreditation at the law school was in jeopardy if conditions were not improved.
Graves and Fischer noted that the college has been studying and investigating the possibility of alternative financing sources for the building.
Richmond Times-Dispatch at B-1 (December 9, 1975)
Times-Dispatch State Staff, "Building Only Option, W&M Informs ABA" (1975). 1975-1976: Emeric Fischer (Acting Dean). 10.