INTERNATIONAL STUDENT EXCHANGES AND STUDY ABROADIn 1998 a special law school committee chaired by Professor Clark Cunningham developed an innovative program that is greatly expanding opportunities for Washington University law students to study abroad for a semester and for foreign law students to study at Washington University. These programs enable students to learn foreign law, gain comparative insights, and challenge fundamental premises of American law.
But they do much more. They also allow students to experience a foreign culture, understand the workings of a foreign university, and forge lifelong friendships and professional ties. In those cases where the student is taking courses in a language other than English, then refinement of language skills is an added benefit.
We have developed exchanges mainly with those foreign law schools that offer courses in English and that, in most cases, do not have exchange agreements with other United States law schools. Before approval by the School of Law, Professor Cunningham personally visited each of the English language foreign law schools to learn more about their methods of instruction and to clarify the arrangements.
As of August 2000, the Washington University School of Law has exchange agreements in place with each of the nine foreign law schools listed below. Unless otherwise indicated, all courses at the foreign law school are in English. Students must still submit individual applications, which are reviewed by the Committee on Foreign Study. The Committee makes recommendations to the full faculty. If approved by the faculty, student applications are then submitted to the American Bar Association for final approval.
· Utrecht University, Utrecht, the Netherlands. Utrecht University has a history reaching back to the 7th century. Six Nobel prize winners have been associated with Utrecht, which has the largest teaching staff of all the Dutch universities. Because Utrecht is an international university serving the entire European community, a large number of law courses are offered in English. The Netherlands Institute of Human Rights is based at Utrecht. During the 1999-2000 school year, two Washington University students studied at Utrecht and two Utrecht students studied here.
· Inns of Court School of Law, London, United Kingdom. This law school was founded by the four Inns of Court, where English law originated in the Middle Ages. It is the leading institution authorized by the English Bar to prepare law graduates of English universities to become barristers. The school has designed two courses specially for our students, including "pupillage" (apprenticeship with a barrister). After completion of these courses, students will enroll in advanced practice courses that apply specific subjects, like international trade, to simulated cases. The first Washington University students will study at the Inns of Court in Spring 2001.
· The Gerd Bucerius Law School, in Hamburg, Germany. This is a new, private law school dedicated to innovative teaching
techniques, including small group instruction. There are seminars and lectures in English, as well as German language courses
for those with adequate proficiency. The exchange program is expected to begin in 2002.
· Monash University Faculty of Law, Melbourne, Australia. Monash is the largest university in Australia, with over 2000 law students. This exchange is built around the strong clinical programs of both Monash and Washington University. Students from each law school enroll in clinical courses in the other school, the first such program to be developed by an American law school. During Spring 2000 two Monash students studied at Washington University and one Washington University student went to Monash.
· National Law School of India, Bangalore, India. The most prestigious law school in India, the National Law School admits only 60 students per year. Its innovative five-year curriculum combines social science and law courses with three terms of clinical education before graduation. In 1999 their students won both of the major international law school competitions -the Jessup International Moot Court and the International Client Counseling Competition. One student from the National Law School has already studied at Washington University and another is expected in Spring 2001. Two Washington University students have been approved to study at the National Law School but for personal reasons were unable to go.
· Indian Law Society Law College, Pune, India. Pune is an ancient center of education and culture located in the mountains above Bombay, and the Indian Law Society (ILS) Law College is one of the most distinguished law schools in India. Three Chief Justices of the Indian Supreme Court were graduates of the ILS Law College. The ILS Law College has particular strengths in women's law and public interest law. The program has been approved by the faculty, but student exchanges have not yet commenced.
· National University of Singapore. The leading law school in Southeast Asia, the Faculty of Law at the National University of Singapore hosts the internationally famous Asia-Pacific Center for Environmental Law and the Center for Commercial Law Studies. In the 1999-2000 academic year, 136 of its 750 law students came from 17 foreign countries, drawing from Europe, North America, Africa, Asia and Australia. The law school prides itself on having the best record in the world in the Jessup International Moot Court Competition. Student exchanges began this fall, with one student going each way for the semester.
· Kobe University Graduate School of Law, Japan. This is our oldest exchange program, closely linked to the joint degree program in East Asian studies. For this program, Japanese language proficiency is required.
The student exchange program is administered by Dr. Michele Shorestrian., For more information, visit the School of Law web site ls.wustl.edu. Click on "Faculty and Curriculum" and then "Student Exchange Programs."