Concord Law School was the first, fully on-line school...and it caters to working people--the average student age is 43 years old.
We spoke with a woman from the school's first graduating class about the ups and downs of this new option.
The views from Sandusky Sheldon's back deck are beautiful...but there's not law school in sight. The closest being three hours away in Sacramento. When she heard about Concord's program, she jumped at the opportunity.
"That became my life for the next four years," says Sheldon.
The school curriculum and lessons are entirely on-line, complete with video lectures that you can play and pause at your leisure. Also, there's chat rooms with your professors and other students and standard quizzes, essays and exams.
"It's exactly the same requirements as a brick and mortar school."
Sheldon completed the program in four years for a total price tag of thirty thousand dollars...a significant savings over traditional schools.
Upon graduating at the end of 2002, she passed the California bar on her first try and began working as a court-appointed attorney in juvenile dependency cases for both Plumas and Lassen counties.
Looking back on her student years, she appreciates the program's flexibility.
"You can do it at your own rate. You can take your time, you just can't fall behind."
But she acknowledges it's not for everyone.
"You spend a great deal of time alone."
Still, for her, it was the best--and only feasible option--that allowed her to achieve her dream.
"It expands peoples' possibilities. I think that's the best thing about it. It allows people to do things they never would have done."
Sandusky also said she hasn't felt any stigma for her on-line degree and that it's been widely accepted by her colleagues.