Indiana Tech disperses books from law library

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A bulk of the books from the law library at the defunct Indiana Tech Law School are finding a new home at Ivy Tech Community College in Fort Wayne.

More than 1,000 volumes from the law school are being donated to Ivy Tech Northeast where students in the paralegal and legal studies programs will use them. The books include several North Eastern Reporter editions along with U.S. and Indiana code books, plus the American Jurisprudence and Corpus Juris Secundum encyclopedias.

Heidi Fowler, program chair of the legal studies and paralegal program at Ivy Tech in Fort Wayne, said even though much of legal research is now done online, the students will benefit from having the hard copies available.

“I think it gives the students a better understanding of how to use the material,” Fowler said, explaining the students can learn what the resource books contain and how the information is organized. “Ultimately, the students will do online research but to understand what they are doing,” it helps to have the actual books.

Additional books were also purchased by the Lawbook Exchange, a bookseller specializing in law and the history of the law. President Greg Talbot declined to say which books were purchased, how many were purchased and the total purchase price.

“They had books. We made an offer to buy the books,” Talbot said.

Also, the law school offered to donate reference books and law journals to the Allen County Bar Association. Gina Zimmerman, executive director of the association, said the office did not have any room to store the materials but she did send a notice to the members of the titles that were available.

Indiana Tech did not respond to multiple inquiries seeking comment about the law library.

Indiana Tech Law School, which closed in June after four years, occupied its own 70,000-square-foot building on the western edge of the university’s campus. The library rose through all three floors of the structure with the books, reference works and legal journals shelved on the first and second floors and an open study area on the third floor.

Before it opened, the law school received a donation of law books and microfiche in December 2012. The donor was not revealed but Indiana Tech said an out-of-state businessman made the gift of materials from another law school that had failed to gain accreditation.

Fowler had taught some of her classes at the Indiana Tech law library. She said the law school was always accommodating to her students but now having the materials available on the Ivy Tech campus will be more convenient for the students.

Two large classrooms at Ivy Tech’s campus on Patriot Crossing are being converted into space to house the law books and study desks for the students. The donation, Fowler said, will add to the momentum of the legal courses at Ivy Tech.

“We’re really excited,” she said.


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