UNIVERSITY PARK -- A preliminary plan to expand Penn State's law school to two campuses was approved by the university's board of trustees today. Penn State's president, Graham Spanier, also sought to ease concerns that a new law school at its flagship University Park campus would soon spell the end of the current law school in Carlisle.
"We expect to be in Carlisle for the long term," Spanier said. "We will invest as heavily as we can there."
It wasn't immediately clear if hurdles remain for the plan to be enacted.
Under the plan, The Dickinson School of Law would become a two-campus school with the opening of a new facility at University Park by 2010. The plan received preliminary approval from Dickinson's board of governors Saturday.
The agreement calls for the current Carlisle campus to remain open for at least 10 years, but university officials have made no promises beyond that.
Gov. Rendell said he could not guarantee that the law school would have a permanent presence in Carlisle, but said he would try to lengthen the 10-year commitment.
"We're looking at extending that, making it a more significant number of years," Rendell said at a news conference this week. "That's a matter of negotiation."
Established in 1834, Dickinson has been largely under Penn State's control since a merger between the two schools in 2000.