This is pretty big news. After a not-very-quiet extended negotiation, the University of Illinois Chicago is now officially set to acquire John Marshall Law School, creating Chicago's first public law school. This means that the various other private schools in town will now have to deal with a competitor offering state school tuition. The precise level of that tuition is unclear - the current UIC MBA tuition looks to be $21K per year in-state. U of I College of Law charges $35K right now. The leadership at Loyola-Chicago, Illinois Tech-Chicago Kent, and DePaul law schools will be watching that decision closely because competition in the Chicago market is tough already.
Dean Darby Dickerson will continue to lead the law school - and the merger was surely helped along by the fact that UIC's provost is Susan Poser, the former dean of Nebraska Law.
It's all of some personal interest to me. My grandfather, Samuel Holland, received his LLB from John Marshall back in 1915 at the age of 23 - having arrived in the United States only six years earlier. (Click through to read the extended commencement address Sam heard that fine Tuesday evening, as Mr. Rome Brown, of the Minnesota Law School, railed against the judicial recall movement.)
I'm glad to see JMLS do well.