Western State University College of Law on Wednesday cleared another hurdle on its way toward prestigious national accreditation.
A key panel of the American Bar Assn. voted in favor of granting the university provisional accreditation. The vote will serve as a recommendation to the ABA House of Delegates, which will make a final decision in August.
If the delegates grant the accreditation, Western State will become the third in Orange County in the nation's upper echelon. Whittier Law School, which moved to Costa Mesa last year, was the first and Chapman University School of Law became the second six months ago.
Winning ABA approval would mean that Western State graduates could take the bar examination in any state and apply for advanced-degree programs at other ABA-accredited law schools.
Dennis R. Honabach, Western State's president and law school dean, said the school is optimistic.