Alaska Pacific University will partner with Seattle U to offer the state’s first dual MBA/law program

The sign for Alaska Pacific University stands in front of pine trees surrounded by snow.
The sign marking the entrance to Alaska Pacific University sits behind pillows of snow on a sunny March morning in Anchorage, Alaska. (Valerie Kern/Alaska Public Media)

Alaska is the only state without a law school, forcing prospective lawyers to leave the state. That will change this fall, when students can enroll in a dual law and masters of business administration program (JD-MBA) in Alaska. The dual degree will qualify graduates for jobs in business and law.

Lincoln Garrick is the MBA Director and an assistant professor for the Alaska Pacific University. He said some travel to Seattle is required throughout the hybrid program, but students won’t have to relocate. 

“This type of delivery, we think, gives you the best of both worlds,” he said. “You don’t have to uproot your life. Plus, you get that deep, pure network development that happens when you spend time in the same room [with colleagues].” 

Garrick said a big part of both law and business schools is networking. He said Seattle University offers an in person component and it was important to the university to keep a personal connection with students. 

He said another reason for the partnership is Seattle U has one of the premier Indian and Tribal law schools in the nation. APU is working to become the state’s second largest Tribal University. Garrick said it’s important to have a partner who prioritizes diverse thinking.

He said it’s crucial to offer a law degree in state because many students don’t move back when they seek out of state schooling. 

“We should have access to this type of education. As well as, maybe our homegrown professionals understand Alaska better than those that have just arrived,” said Garrick.

Seattle University was ranked in the top 25 for national part-time law programs by U.S News in 2023.

Correction: This story has been updated to reflect Lincoln Garrick’s full title and that the program is dual, JD-MBA.

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