Thursday, May 2, 2019

Going International!

All 1Ls at Loyola have to take a set curriculum over the course of the year. In addition to legal research and writing, the core classes include criminal law, contracts, torts, property, and civil procedure (commonly called, “civ pro”). Our first semester schedule is therefore extremely predictable because everyone must take four of the five core classes. Second semester, though, is a bit different – it is our first opportunity to explore a chosen area of law via our first elective course.

Elective courses are available to anyone whose GPA after the first semester is above a certain threshold. Student below the threshold must take Privacy Torts, an immensely helpful class that emphasizes test-taking and study strategies. Students above the threshold are allowed to choose from a selection of classes that can vary from year to year. This year’s choices included Income Taxation, Jail to Bail, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Immigration, Innovation Law (a very popular course this year), and International Law. In mid-October, there was a 1L event in which the professors gave a short pitch for their courses and answered student questions. I chose to take on International Law.

As an undergrad, my concentration was international relations so International Law seems fairly obvious. However, there were in fact many factors that went into my decision to take the course. Initially, I thought I might want to take Tax or Innovation – Loyola has one of the best tax law programs in the country and Innovation, which focuses on emerging technologies, quite simply sounded fascinating. In addition, most of my friends wanted to take Innovation, so I was certainly tempted to join them just so we could all study together. Ultimately, what convinced me take International were the professor’s pitch in October and my desire to learn about international business. On a more intuitive level though, the Law of Nations just sounds like such an epic area of study!

So far, the class is great! It’s unlike any other law class I’ve had at Loyola. We have discussed the roots of international law in customs and international conventions going all the way back to the Treaty of Westphalia. Most recently, we finished an intro to maritime law and now we are moving on to State jurisdictions and succession. The most interesting aspect of the class, though, is how the professor, Prof. Glazier, weaves in discussions of topical issues like Brexit, island building in the South China Sea, Russian annexation of Crimea, and military interventions in the Middle East. If you enjoy digging into global events or just like talking about pirates then this is the class for you!

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