The School of Law at Egerton University aims at training students to be legal experts and key players in the promotion of academic achievement and excellence in practice to meet the local and international challenges. As a head-start, it has collaborated with Minnesota School of Law (USA) in various aspects for benchmarking.
Society is dynamic and new issues emerge that require urgent response. There is therefore high demand for specialized and internationally responsive Legal Education. However, current law programs offered by various legal training institutions do not address these issues sufficiently. Thus the establishment of the School of Law at Egerton University is a response to a felt need. This need covers the emerging trends in various aspects of life. Following a needs assessment exercise that involved the input of various stakeholders the following key areas were identified: inadequacy in research training; lack of training in legislative drafting, law reform, and election law. They further pointed out the insensitivity of the law to the issue of planning in regard to environmental issues i.e. waste management, pollution, poor land use planning, environmental degradation caused by an increase in population among others.
Emerging issues such as influx and status of refugees, piracy, corruption, money laundering, privacy and freedom of information, hacking of e-mails and cable communications, renewable energy, genetic engineering, and integration of East African community were raised by the stakeholders. They also expressed the need for the training of judicial officers on various emerging trends in law, training of paralegals and law executors on various aspects of the law. This is energized further by the fact that there is a national effort to implement programs that address the Management for Renewal Growth (EMRG) (1986), The Economic Recovery Strategy for Employment and Wealth Creation (ERSWEC) (2003-2007), which underscore the application of Law as key to improved and sustainable Socio–Economic development and attainment of Vision 2030.
In this regard Egerton University has developed a law program that responds to these issues. In the proposed program there are innovative courses, whose description is provided in the course content section. The highlight of this innovation has focused on practical issues such as; constitution-making, legislative drafting, law reform and social justice, corruption and economic crimes, refugees and immigration, media and
information, logical and critical thinking, and environmental law. It is also noted that the current number of lawyers, who serve mainly in urban areas, serve a small percentage of the Kenyan population. This underscores the need to establish law programs in more institutions to meet the demand for the production of lawyers who can serve the rural population. To meet this demand, other courses in the program have been reviewed to capture the stakeholders‗ views on emerging trends which have not been sufficiently addressed by the current practice and practitioners. This is in line with the Sessional Paper no. 1 of 1986 on Economic Management for Renewed Growth. The Constitution has also created many Constitutional offices and a devolved government, which will require lawyers and therefore there is need to train more lawyers.
The curriculum is tailored to enhance the research skills which are critical in all areas of legal practice and demands that students critically analyze emerging regional and international issues through the production of quality term papers. It has been designed to produce an allround lawyer through the emphasis of integration of personal and legal skills, and development to fit in any branch of legal practice.
The Egerton University School of Law will continuously offer high quality and affordable legal training which will ultimately save the country the much needed foreign exchange given the fact that many students have been undertaking university education outside the country.
The aims and objectives of the Program are:-
i) To teach students the theory and substance of law to enable them apply legal principles in a variety of contexts;
ii) To develop in the students fidelity to law and legal institutions and a commitment to ethical and professional responsibility in their practice of law;
iii) To train and equip lawyers with sound legal knowledge and integrity to appreciate the law and its relevance to the contemporary issues of governance; To produce law graduates of high academic standing and moral values, competent to execute legal work;
iv) To encourage academic dynamism through research, publications and exchange of ideas;
v) To initiate exchange programs with local and international institutions;
vi) To program the clinical seminars as an opportunity for conducting practical research and sharing findings;
vii) To establish a Legal Aid Clinic as an avenue for mentorship and provision of legal advice;
viii) To establish a school of law Journal.
To quality for admission, an applicant must satisfy the minimum entry requirements set by Egerton University. The University shall admit such applicants for the Bachelor of Laws Degree whom the Senate shall accept as being academically qualified without discrimination based on age, ethnic origin, race or physical disabilities or any other form of discrimination. Common requirements for admission into the University are:
i) The minimum entry requirement shall be a mean grade of C+ (plus) with a B (plain) in English, for holders of Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education or its equivalent; and;
ii) Applicants from non-English speaking countries where English is not used as the medium of instruction must include results of TOEFL or the British Examination on IELTS or an equivalent.
Applicants must satisfy the minimum University entry requirements as follows:
iii) A mean grade of C+ (plus) in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examination or its equivalent and a minimum of grade B (plain) in English Language;
iv) degree in any field other than law and a minimum of C+ (plus) in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examination or its equivalent with a minimum of grade B (plain) in English Language;
v) A higher qualification e.g. ―A‖ levels with at least 2 principal passes or its equivalent as determined by the university senate, ―IB‖, or relevant ―Diploma.
Course Structure and Duration
i). The courses offered for the Bachelor of Law are listed below and, unless otherwise stated, each course is one unit. Each Course shall be equivalent to 45 lecture hours or three credit factors.
ii). There will be four types of courses offered:
iii). University Common Courses
iv). Each student will be required to take common courses in their first and second years of study to graduate although they are offered across the University so as to help graduates integrate their profession as per market needs and to foster unity in the various disciplines in the University to facilitate a multidisciplinary approach.
v). C L E Core Courses
vi). Students at the School take these mandatory courses as required by the Council of legal Education.
vii). School Core Courses:Students enrolled as undergraduates at the School must take these courses before graduating.
viii). Elective Courses:Students in the School are allowed to select two elective courses out of four in each semester of the third and fourth years of study.
ix). Course Coding:The general University coding system is as follows:
1.First year courses 100
2.Second year courses 200
3.Third year courses 300
4.Fourth year courses 400
x). During the first and second years of study, students shall take a total of Sixteen (16) courses in each year, inclusive of common core courses plus the Judicial Attachment Program, at the end of second year.
All examinations for this programme will be conducted in accordance with Egerton University statute No XXVIII.
The grading of examination for this programmes shall be conducted in accordance with Egerton University Statutes No XXVIII.
To graduate a student shall be required to take and pass ALL scheduled courses within the stipulated period.
Degree Classification shall be in accordance with Egerton University Statutes No XXVIII.