Knudson School of Law Students Gain Global Perspective of Law Through Study Abroad Experiences
Seven second-year law students – Jessa Howes, Sarah Varney, Josh Brower, Caitlin Hoeffner, Kate Anderson, Lauren Alpers and Justin Larson – spent their summers abroad learning about the law through study abroad opportunities in different EU nations. All seven students discovered their respective study abroad opportunities through the American Bar Association website and were able to earn law school credits for the time they spent in their programs.
Howes traveled to the island of Spetses, Greece, to pursue a study abroad program offered through the Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, where she studied remedies, judicial processes and comparative family law. Howes was able to go on several planned outings on the island that highlighted the culture and language of Greece.
“It was an invaluable learning experience, both legally and culturally,” Howes said. “Combining what I have learned here at USD’s Knudson School of Law with my study abroad courses has resulted in a richer understanding of law in general.”
Varney and Brower attended a summer program in Paris, France, that was sponsored by Golden Gate University School of Law and the Université Paris Nanterre. The two students took courses in introduction to French and EU law and comparative issues in sex, gender and the law.
“Our classes went to the offices of the French Constitutional Council, the highest constitutional court in France, located in the Palais Royal,” Varney recalled. “We did fun things outside law, including visiting the Eiffel Tower, the Catacombs, the Louvre and the Musée d'Orsay, and the French Open.”
Four of USD’s students – Hoeffner, Anderson, Alpers and Larson – traveled to Cork, Ireland, to study contract law through a comparative lens at University College Cork. Through the course, the students analyzed how contracts are formed, focusing on comparing and contrasting contract law in the U.S. and EU.
“The program highlighted negotiation, which is of interest to me as a member of the USD Law Alternative Dispute Resolution Board,” said Alpers. “There were speakers from Ireland, England, China and the United States, all of whom provided fantastic perspectives on their experiences with international law. The class ended with a contract negation simulation where we had to work alongside our peers to come to an agreement.”
Anderson also reflected on the value of the program. “Overall, the experience was incredible, and I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in traveling and anyone wanting to learn more about contracts or the law outside of the United States.”
The students’ schedule allowed time for them to explore Ireland, and they visited sites such as the Blarney Castle, Cobh and the Mahon Golf Course. Visiting the cliffs of Moher was mentioned as a particular favorite by the students.
“This trip allowed me to experience a new place and appreciate another culture, all while earning law school credits,” said Hoeffner. “I returned to the United States with a global perspective on how people communicate and study law.”
“It was a great opportunity, and I would definitely recommend it to others,” said Larson. “I am very thankful I got more information and realized it was affordable, especially when you consider the credits you receive.”
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