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The Southern University Law Center has won approval for a pilot program that will let students study for a semester in Shreveport.

The Board of Regents this month approved letting the law school expand some of its programs into northern Louisiana.

“This vote of confidence will support our mission of being an institution of access and opportunity for all, ” said John Pierre, chancellor of the Southern University Law Center.

The "Semester in Shreveport" idea came about after the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems found that the Shreveport-Bossier City area is significantly under-represented in the number of graduate degrees and has significant disparities between the numbers of black and white lawyers and legal professionals.

The pilot program will bring legal education opportunities to the area and could eventually result in the establishment of a branch campus of the Law Center.

A similar program at the University of Idaho's law school lets third-year students spend their final year of law school in Boise, the state capital, rather than on-campus at Moscow.

The Southern program will begin in spring 2022.