On July 27, Penn Law welcomed 116 students from 29 countries into the LLM Class of 2019, chosen from more than 1,300 applicants from over 70 countries, for a year of graduate study. The LLMs, who are all foreign trained lawyers, include law firm, in-house, and NGO attorneys; government officials, including a judge, diplomat and several prosecutors, and academics. In addition to the new LLM class, Penn Law also welcomed 1 incoming SJD student to the Law School.
“The practice of law now expands beyond borders and attorneys are regularly expected to understand local, national, regional and international legal, political and cultural issues to effectively counsel clients” said Elise Luce Kraemer L’93, Executive Director of Graduate Programs. “Although we are seeing the rise of nationalism and insular ideologies, the practical reality dictates that business and law will continue to be global endeavors. Our LLMs are an enormous international resource for the law school, both as students and when they return to their home countries where they continue as leaders in government, the judiciary, and NGOs. Many others become partners in law firms and rise to top positions in business. Regardless of their career path, the democratic, multicultural values that they absorb at Penn Law inform the decisions they make for the rest of their careers, thus strengthening democracy, inclusive institutions, multilateralism and diplomacy around the world.”
The LLM program at Penn Law is a one-year, full-time course of study for lawyers whose first degree in law is from outside the United States which gives international students an enhanced understanding of American law. Students design their own curriculum, which allows them to explore their particular areas of interest, and take classes alongside upper-level JD students. The 10-month LLM program begins with a five-week summer program, in which students take two courses: Foundations of the U.S. Legal System and U.S. Legal Writing/Research.
As part of the LLM program, students also have the option of pursuing the Wharton Business and Law Certificate, which is designed specifically for LLM students interested in international business. The certificate program is taught by Wharton faculty and industry experts, who prepare students to compete in today’s global legal environment.
Additionally, LLM students have the chance to develop their professional skills and get to know the different communities throughout Philadelphia by taking part in the LLM Public Service Program and Penn Law’s clinical programs.