The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law offers a series of externships and foreign study opportunities, as part of the International and Comparative Law Program. Because the practice of law is increasingly global in nature, the educational objectives of these opportunities for our students are as follows:
- To provide students additional opportunities to gain familiarity with laws and legal systems outside the United States;
- To give students the experience of interacting with lawyers from other legal systems to help establish their global professional networks and to understand how lawyers in non-US legal systems handle legal matters; and
- To help students build intercultural awareness and intercultural legal skills.
University of Aberdeen (Aberdeen, Scotland) Summer Study Program
The School of Law sponsors, in conjunction with the University of Baltimore School of Law, a Summer Abroad Program in Comparative Law at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. The five-week program provides an intimate setting for comparative legal analysis and exposure to the Scottish legal system, which has elements of the English common law and the continental civil law systems. The goal of the program is to provide students with insight into the laws of another country and thus a new perspective on the American legal system.
Bucerius Law School (Hamburg, Germany) Exchange Program
The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law has established a student exchange program with Bucerius Law School in Hamburg, Germany. Under the Exchange Program up to two University of Maryland students per year may study in the fall semester at Bucerius Law School and transfer up to 14 credits toward their JD degree. The courses at Bucerius Law School are taught in English and focus on international and comparative business and trade law.
Founded in 2000, Bucerius is the first private law school in Germany. The school is fully accredited under very strict German accreditation standards for its students to sit for the first state bar examination. Bucerius admits 100 German students per year for a four year required program that has a focus on international business law.
The University of Chile (Santiago, Chile) Exchange Program
The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law has established a student exchange program with the school of law of the University of Chile (la Facultad de Derecho de la Universidad de Chile) in Santiago, Chile. Under the Exchange Program, up to two University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law students per year may study in the fall semester at the University of Chile and transfer up to 14 credits toward their JD degree.
The University of Chile School of Law is Chile’s oldest and most prestigious academic institution and one of the finest institutions of higher learning in South America. Founded in 1843, the school has educated nearly every president of Chile. Since 1938 it has been located in the beautiful Bellavista area of downtown Santiago. Recently renovated, the school has a large law library and state-of-the-art computer facilities. More than 200 professors serve the law school’s 1,700 students. The school has a large clinical law program that includes South America’s first environmental law clinic. It also is the home of several research centers including the Center of Environmental Law, which regularly hosts special programs and issues research publications on cutting edge issues of environmental law.
The University of Cape Town (Cape Town, South Africa) Exchange Program
The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law has established a student exchange program with the school of law of the University of Cape Town in Cape Town, South Africa. Under the Exchange Program, up to two University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law students per year may study in the spring semester at the University of Cape Town and transfer up to 14 credits toward their JD degree. Due to the UCT academic calendar (February - June), students may not participate in the exchange during their final semester at the School of Law.
The city of Cape Town is home to the Parliament of South Africa. The University of Cape Town (UCT) is South Africa's oldest university, and the Faculty of Law established in 1859 is the oldest law school in South Africa. UCT boasts one of the best law libraries in South Africa and state of the art classrooms and facilities. UCT faculty provided important support in the drafting of the South Africa Constitution.Graduates of the Faculty of Law of UCT include Constitutional Court judges and renowned scholars. UCT faculty and students continue to play a key role in South Africa law reform, policy and governance.
South Africa Externship Program
Since 1989, the School of Law has offered students the opportunity to participate in an externship program in the country of South Africa. The program provides students an opportunity to work as externs during the academic year at human rights and civil rights law organizations. Since its inception, the school has sent nearly sixty student externs to South Africa. Participating students have provided direct legal services to clients, participated in the development of impact litigation, and monitored legislative developments on emerging areas of human rights law. Students are supervised in their field placement by a South African lawyer and by a University of Maryland faculty supervisor. Upon successful completion of the Externship, students receive 11 credits and satisfy the School of Law’s experiential learning requirement.
Inter-American Court of Human Rights (San José, Costa Rica) Externship Program
For law students interested in international human rights, the School of Law offers a full semester externship opportunity for students to work full-time at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in San José, Costa Rica. Applicants must have good oral and written skills in English and Spanish, as Spanish is the principle language used at the Court. All University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law students who have completed one year of study and are in good standing may apply for the Inter-American Court of Human Rights Externship Program. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights requires a minimum three (3) month commitment from the student. Students will be eligible to receive academic credit for the externship (up to 11 credits for the fall and spring semester and up to 9 credits for the summer session).
The Inter-American Court of Human Rights was established in 1979 to interpret and enforce the American Convention on Human Rights. The Court exercises both adjudicatory and advisory functions. In its adjudicatory capacity, the Court hears and rules on specific, referred cases of human rights violations. In its advisory role, the Court issues opinions on matters of legal interpretation brought by other Organization of American States bodies or member states.
The Law Reform Commission Program
In 2005 the School of Law established the Law Reform Commission Program. The Program provides students an opportunity to work in one of the many Law Reform Commissions (or “Agencies”) that exist principally in countries of the Commonwealth. The Commissions are independent, government-funded organizations that analyze and make recommendations to their respective Parliaments on the clarification, updating, or other improvement of the law.
The Law Reform Commissions participating in the Program are principally responsible for selecting their respective student visitors. Students selected for participation in the Program travel to and work with foreign law reform commissions engaged in active public interest law reform projects. The foreign service work generally takes place in the summer. The precise duration and form of the externship, however, are determined in consultation with the specific law reform commissions that have agreed to accept students from the School of Law.
All University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law students who have successfully completed one year of study and are in good standing are eligible for the Law Reform Commission Program. Students must also have successfully completed the course, Comparative Public Policy & Law Reform, prior to participation in the Program.
Other than the credits for successful completion of the Comparative Public Policy course, students do not receive academic credit for participation in the Program. Students may work with individual law school professors for independent writing projects on the foundation of the externship experience. With instructor approval, students who participate in the summer Law Reform Commission Program may receive credit for a paper based upon their summer work by registering in the following fall semester for Independent Written Work. Students must also make a presentation on their experience upon their return to the law school at the end of the externship. Participation in the Program does not exempt students from any requirements for the JD degree at the law school.
National Chengchi University College of Law (Taipei, Taiwan) Exchange Program
The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law has established a student exchange program with the National Chengchi University College of Law in Taipei, Taiwan. Under the Exchange Program, up to two University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law students per year may study at the National Chengchi University and transfer up to 12 credits toward their JD degree. Due to the NCCU academic calendar, students may not participate in the exchange during their final semester at the School of Law.
Comillas Pontifical University (Madrid, Spain) Exchange Program
The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law has established a student exchange program with Comillas Pontifical University in Madrid, Spain. The exchange student(s) will spend two semesters at Comillas Pontifical University. In order to be eligible, students must be at Spanish level B1 and English level B1. The courses at Comillas Pontifical University focus on Law, Business, and International Relations. Students interested in this exchange program must be nominated by the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. Once students have been nominated, they will receive an electronic application with instructions on how to apply.
The high level of international legal and commercial activity in the Baltimore-Washington area as well as proximity to the seat of the national government create a multiplicity of opportunities for students seeking practical experience in the field of international law. The School of Law has a well-established externship program that allows students to gain academic credit from experiential learning at public and non-profit institutions. Under this program, students may arrange semester-long practical courses of study, for example, with the U.S. Department of State or other national or state agencies, as well as with the numerous international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the area.