NEW YORK (AP) A New York law school will open its new campus in Brooklyn next month as the city tries to make sure that people in its predominately black and Hispanic student body are protected from bias and hate.
The Law School at Yeshiva University in Brooklyn has been working on a site for about a year on the edge of the borough, a place where students are able to attend classes, participate in social events and hang out.
It’s a move that will open a space in Brooklyn, the first law school in the country, where the Law School’s black and Latino students can be confident in their rights and be protected from discrimination, said Rachel Hirsch, who co-founded the school and oversees it with her husband.
The law school has been the target of several recent high-profile incidents, including the recent arrest of two of its students and the vandalism of a law school office.
The school is trying to make its campus more welcoming to students from the city’s mostly Latino and black communities.
The new campus will be built near the city hall and the Law school’s main building, and will include the main building’s courtyard and the school’s courtyard outside, Hirsch said.
It will also have access to a more traditional location, which is in an area adjacent to the campus, she said.
A spokeswoman for the Brooklyn School District said the school is working with city officials to make the campus more accommodating for students and to get permits from the borough’s Department of Transportation.
The building will be designed by the architecture firm Larchmont Group and built by a local firm, Hire New York, according to a release.
It will be a large open space that will be accessible to all, including students, and includes two public areas, a meeting room, study rooms, a cafeteria and other areas, the release said.
The project is part of a broader plan for the school to make itself more welcoming, with plans to improve security and expand the law school’s programming, according the release.
“This project will allow our students to live and work in the most welcoming, inclusive and safe environment possible, and make our campus more accessible to the entire community,” said Hirsch in a statement.
The new school will have a new building on a corner of South Fifth Avenue and Columbia Street, between Columbia and Lexington streets.
It is located on the site of a former hospital and a former school, but it is being called a “community development” project and will be open to the public.
In addition to the law program, the school plans to offer classes in law, economics, business, social sciences and more, the statement said.
It also plans to create a “diversity and inclusion center” and to create more opportunities for students to interact with each other, according Hirsch.
More than 70 percent of Brooklyn’s students are black and nearly 70 percent are Hispanic.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and de Blasio’s office have pushed to make Brooklyn a “city of inclusion” in recent years, including requiring that all buildings built in the borough be designated as “inclusive” or “race and ethnicity neutral” by the city.
Hirsch said the plan will make sure the school meets the citywide goal of creating a more diverse and inclusive city, and she believes the school will be successful in doing so.
“I think this is a positive step forward for our students and a positive way to be successful and succeed in our city,” Hirsch told The Associated Press by email.
The city is also working with the school, Hreshette said, to build a community center on the property and “add additional space to the school for students.”
The city’s new program, which was first announced in April, will help the school develop its own policies and practices, including ways to address complaints from students and community members, Hrege said.
The school plans on holding community meetings with students, staff and residents.
The new campus also will be home to the Law Society of New York’s Black Law Society, Hrenckner said.