Costa Rica 2019 – Francisco Rivera Juaristi
¡Pura Vida! This Costa Rican slang term perfectly describes the three amazing weeks our 16 students had studying international human rights law in Costa Rica this summer. In addition to learning about the human rights norms, bodies, and mechanisms within the United Nations and the Organization of American States, students also explored the natural beauty Costa Rica has to offer. Lectures from attorneys and experts that work at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, labor unions, and human rights and environmental organizations exposed students to a variety of practice areas. Additionally, several students worked on further developing their Spanish language skills. Four students put into practice what they learned in class by participating in legal externships with the U.N. and human rights organizations in Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic. Overall, this was another successful year for the Costa Rica summer abroad program.
Geneva 2019 – Francisco Rivera Juaristi
Maybe it was getting to see in person so many U.N. agencies and international organizations; maybe it was the variety of international law topics covered in class, or maybe it was the majestic beauty of the lakes and mountains of Switzerland. Most likely, what made the Geneva summer abroad program a success was the combination of all of the above – and the delicious Swiss Mövenpick ice cream! Throughout four weeks of class, twenty-five students were able to mix-and-match their preferred topics in Public International Law, Human Rights Law, International Humanitarian Law, and International Intellectual Property Law. Eleven students followed their academic experience with externships in beautiful Malta, London, and Ireland, where they learned about human rights issues affecting people all over the world, and worked first-hand with organizations that provide legal assistance to asylum seekers and refugees. Overall, students were able to learn about international law in a classroom setting, but also by engaging directly with attorneys that work in various fields of international law.
The Hague 2019 – David Sloss
We had another successful program in The Hague in 2019. Eighteen students from a total of seven U.S. law schools attended the program. The students were all very enthusiastic about the program. They learned a lot about international law and institutions and had a good time in the process.
As in past years, we focused primarily on the International Criminal Court (ICC). Students met with several different judges, lawyers, and other professionals who work at the ICC. Students were also able to attend a trial session in the case of Prosecutor v. Dominic Ongwen.
We also visited seven other international institutions based in the Hague, including the International Court of Justice, the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal, and the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals.
Oxford 2019 – Cathy Sandoval
The 2019 Oxford program had another successful summer. Law students from Santa Clara, Golden Gate, Lewis & Clark, and Syracuse universities gathered at Oxford for the Santa Clara University School of Law Oxford University Summer Program from June through the end of July. Through one-on-one Oxford-style tutorials, students studied and prepared weekly papers on either Jurisprudence, Comparative Property law, International Criminal Law, or Energy and Environmental Law. At weekly tutorial sessions, students met individually with their Oxford tutor to discuss and defend their papers. The Oxford tutorial is an intellectually stimulating and fulfilling learning method, practiced at Oxford since its founding in 1096. We thank the professors who worked with our students to provide an engaging and informative learning environment.
Students participated in seminars where Oxford professors covered a variety of important legal doctrines. These included lectures on “The European Union Tax Cases,” “Environmental Law and Legal Imagination,” “Privacy Torts,” “Victim Participation in the Khmer Rouge Trials,” “Parliamentary Sovereignty in the UK,” “Comparative Property Law,” “Internet Regulation to Protect Democracy and Public Safety,” “The Native American Reservation Electricity Gap,” and “The Rights of U.K. Citizens in the E.U. and E.U. Citizens in the U.K. after Brexit.” Our program met against the backdrop of the U.K.’s debates about Brexit, Britain’s proposed exit from the European Union, a topic which sparked discussions about the relationship between law and policy. The seminar lectures, 20-page research papers the students wrote for the course, and tours of United Kingdom legal institutions, formed the cornerstones of the English Legal Institutions Seminar the students successfully completed alongside their tutorials.
We learned about practicing law at a global scale through our visit to the London office of the law firm of Latham & Watkins where we met with the firm’s energy and environmental law practice group. We visited the U.S. Embassy and met with the United States Energy attaché. We co-hosted the Energy, Environment, and Ethics Conference with the National Energy Marketers Association. This 3-day conference gave our students the opportunity to network with energy executives as we learned from speakers from Oxford University, the private and non-profit sectors, and U.S. and U.K. governmental officials. We observed oral arguments at the U.K. Supreme Court for a case regarding the siting of a renewable energy project. The case was heard at the U.K. Supreme Court’s sitting in the Welsh Parliament, giving us the opportunity to visit Cardiff Castle in Wales prior to the hearing. The Presiding Judge (Recorder of Oxford), for the Oxford Criminal Court, the Honourable Judge Pringle, QC (Queens Silk), hosted us for a dialogue about U.S. and U.K. criminal law and procedure. We observed the questioning of a witness in a homicide trial at the Oxford Criminal Courthouse. The lawyers and judges all wore the wigs and robes required of barristers and jurists in the United Kingdom. The program gave students the opportunity to learn about U.K. and global law from the vantage of practicing lawyers, academia, the government, non-profit, and private sectors, the district court, and the UK Supreme Court.
Professor Catherine Sandoval, an Oxford graduate and former Rhodes Scholar who earned a Master’s in Politics at St. Anthony’s College Oxford, and a member of the faculty at Santa Clara University School of Law, directed the Oxford summer program. Professor Sandoval guided the students through Oxford traditions such as taking an oath to get a library card from this ancient university.
The students enjoyed visiting Oxford’s historic buildings, many of which date from the 1200s. Magdalen College, Oxford, founded in 1458, hosted most of our program lectures and seminars, and we also met for a lecture at a club the Beatles visited, Vincent’s Club. We enjoyed Oxford’s lovely parks including the deer park at Magdalen College. The Oxford summer law program by Santa Clara University has been running for over 40 years and we look forward to many more years of studying law in the City of Dreaming Spires, Oxford, England.
Shanghai 2019 – Anna Han
This past summer, Shanghai welcomed 11 enthusiastic law students who studied Chinese Law for 3 weeks at KoGuan Law School, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, in the heart of this vibrant city. The students learned about doing business in China and the myriad of laws and regulations that apply. After the classes ended, several went on to externships in law firms and courts in cities as diverse as Beijing, Hong Kong, and Taipei. A few stayed on in Shanghai with large firms. As part of our studies, we visited a People’s Court in Shanghai and were briefed on its workings. Intel’s legal department also graciously hosted the students to talk about the challenges of an American business in China. The attorney at Intel who hosted us actually credited the start of his international legal career with having attended an SCU program years ago in Hong Kong. The students did not just learn theory but visited two large international firms to hear from lawyers who work in Shanghai.
While the studying was rigorous, there was also some time for fun. On weekends, the students took trips to Beijing, climbed the Yellow Mountain (Huang san), visited the famous West Lake in Hangzhou and some, after the studying was done, took trips to nearby Asian countries such as Vietnam and South Korea. As a group, we visited one of the famous water towns near Shanghai where we could step back in time, enjoy a boat ride in a canal, and hear traditional opera.
This summer, there were lots of foodies and shoppers in the group so many local restaurants were explored and some nice suits and other clothes made. A few had to buy an extra piece of luggage to carry the items home. Many of the students plan to keep in touch afterwards even though they are from different schools. The overall feedback was that this was a wonderful learning experience and quite a few expressed appreciation for the quality of the lectures and the externships offered, and planned to “promote it when they got home to their fellow classmates.” All told, it was both an academically successful program and one full of fun and friendship.
Sydney 2019 – Evangeline Abriel
Protection of Australia’s 40,000 year old aboriginal wall art and delicate flora and fauna; exploration of the way the United States, Australia, and the international community respond to refugee and humanitarian crises; tea with an Australian Federal Circuit Court judge—coupled with the Blue Mountains, wombats, and a cruise on a 1900s gentleman’s schooner in Sydney Harbour—what an amazing 2019 Sydney program!
And what better place than Australia to study two of the most critical areas of law in today’s world—refugee law and environmental law? Assisting us in our exploration of these topics were two outstanding Australian jurists—Barrister Nicholas Poynder, on Australian refugee law, and Professor Angela Dwyer, of the University of Technology Sydney School of Law, on environmental law. In fact, our farewell dinner was a wonderful barbecue at Prof. Poynder’s home.
A highlight of our program is our visits to Australian legal institutions and the opportunity to engage with Australian judges and lawyers. We observed a compelling immigration appeal in Federal Circuit Court, followed by tea and thoughtful discussion with Judge Nicholas Manousaridis. Legal Services Commissioner John McKenzie also welcomed us to his office, where he discussed with us the practice of law in Australia. Mr. McKenzie inspired us with his recounting of his experiences as a solicitor with the Aboriginal Legal Services Office and a description of the legal issues facing the First Australians. We also visited the Environmental Defender’s Office, where solicitors gave us a captivating presentation on their work to respond to Australia’s environmental challenges.
We are especially proud of the work seven students did as externs following the course. Three were placed in non-profit refugee law offices, where they met with clients and worked with solicitors on the complex tasks of preparing refugee applications. Two externed with the Environmental Defender’s Office, working on projects involving water and greenhouse gas issues, along with a just transition for both the environment and workers following mine closures. Finally, two externed with a large law firm in Fiji, where their tasks involved corporate and contract work and an illuminating visit to a village with which the law firm was working.
These externs gained more than substantive knowledge. They were given important, hands-on tasks that allowed them to develop skills in effective interactions with clients, fact investigation, preparing court pleadings, legal research, and working with solicitors. These skills apply directly to their future work in the United States. Add the incomparable benefit of an international perspective and sensitivity and you have the recipe for an exceptional lawyer!
We look forward to another rewarding Sydney program in 2020!
Tokyo 2019 – Philip Jimenez
During the summer of 2019, twenty law students from across the country, from Maine to California to Hawaii, attended Santa Clara Law’s program in Tokyo. Designed to prepare law students for an international practice, the program includes classes introducing them to the Japanese legal culture, international trade law, protection of intellectual property, and transnational contracts and financing. Once classes have finished, students may choose to serve four or five week externships at law firms in Tokyo, in Seoul, South Korea, or in UlaanBaatar, Mongolia.
The academic portion is headed up by Mitsuo Matsushita, Professor Emeritus, Tokyo University and legal advisor to Nagashima, Ohno, Tsunematsu, a leading Tokyo law firm. Professor Matsushita has lectured at prominent universities globally, and was a founding member of the Appellate Body of the World Trade Organization. He is universally recognized as one of the world’s leading experts on international trade.
Yoshiyuki Inaba, founding partner at TMI Associates, one of Japan’s leading I.P. firms, presented on patent and copyright law. Students benefit greatly from the depth of his knowledge and experience.
Keisuke Abe, Professor of Law at Seikei University, lectured on the Japanese legal system and culture. He has been a Visiting Fellow at the University of Cambridge, Visiting Scholar at Harvard and Oxford, and widely recognized as an expert in Comparative Law, Constitutional Law, and Bioethics.
Professor Abe is joined by Kyoko Ishida, Professor of Law at Waseda University. Widely published, Professor Ishida received her Ph.D from the University of Washington and has served as a Researcher at the Ministry of Justice and the Supreme Court.
Philip J. Jimenez, Professor of Law, Santa Clara University, who presented on Transnational Contracts, has lectured widely in Asian countries, including Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Mongolia, South Korea and Japan. He has consulted for the Ministries of Justice in Thailand and South Korea. Professor Jimenez recently received an Honorary Doctorate from the Graduate University of Mongolia in UlaanBaatar.
The students attended excellent “field trips” to the Supreme Court, the Diet (Parliament), the Ministry of Justice and the Patent Office.
Dinners and lunches with faculty provide students an excellent opportunity to connect, and to enhance the classroom discussions.
During the month of July many students served externships at major law firms in Tokyo and Seoul. The firms all have substantial international practice; students gained valuable experience and insight to that enterprise and have an opportunity to begin valuable “networking.” On a regular basis, our on-site Directors, Marcus Kosins in Tokyo, and Shane Hong in Seoul, provided our externs with opportunities to discuss and share those insights gained. Most students seem to have had an outstanding, “life changing” experience.
The venue for the program is the Asia Center of Japan, centrally located in the Akasaka District of Tokyo. Most students elected to board at the Center, which offers excellent, inexpensive lodging, and provides a cafeteria serving breakfast and lunch.
Vienna 2019 – Donald Polden
The Santa Clara summer 2019 program in Vienna provided an excellent opportunity for the students to learn European law and the law of the European Union, while studying in one of Europe’s most beautiful and vibrant cities. More than a dozen students attended the program and then about half of them went to externships placements in Budapest, Kuwait, and Casablanca. Three of the students were from Santa Clara University Law School and the rest came from law schools on the East and West coasts.
Several distinguished faculty members from the University of Vienna led the students through a comprehensive examination of foundations of European law (including canon law and contemporary commercial and regulatory issues in Austria) as well as a firm grounding in European Union law. The classes were held in very modern and comfortable classrooms at the University of Vienna for the first two weeks of the program and then at the historic Austrian Military Academy for the final week. The program featured visits to the Austrian Supreme Court (for a meeting with a judge on the Court) and to historic cultural sites around Vienna.
The students in the program reported various cultural and recreational trips to Budapest, Prague, close cities in France, Strasbourg, Croatia and other locations, as well as several places in Vienna which is home is some of the world’s great museums, concert halls, restaurants, and cafes.
Some photos were winners of this year’s #SCULawAbroad photo contest. Check out our Facebook page to see more photos and videos.