Learning about an incredibly influential country as it is evolving is one of the best things about the Chinese Summer Law Program. I was fortunate to have a first-hand look at the country with the largest population, the country with the fastest growing major economy, and the largest global exporter all at the same time! The Chinese Summer Law Program at OU Law is in partnership with Indiana University – Indianapolis.
For four weeks, our group of law students from across the United States and Canada were able to live among Chinese law students while learning from some of the top legal scholars in the country. Many of our professors spoke candidly about their experiences during the Cultural Revolution, when the practice of law was an illegal profession, and how the Chinese legal system has developed to the country that it is today.
Another incredible part of this experience was getting the opportunity to travel to a country and to places within that country that very few people from North America get to see. I had always wanted to travel to China but as a non-Chinese speaker with no connections in China, I wasn’t exactly sure how I would find the time to travel to China and see it in an authentic way.
This program not only afforded me an opportunity to obtain a travel visa, but also connected me with Chinese law students to serve as our “buddies” during our trip. These buddies turned out to be an incredible resource for seeing the city of Beijing through the eyes of a local. However, as we immersed ourselves in the Chinese culture the thing that shocked me the most was, despite cultural differences, how much the American and the Chinese law students had in common. It is nice to know that no matter what country you study in, everyone goes through similar experiences when studying the law.
I will always remember the important places we visited. As we casually strolled through the halls of the Supreme Peoples Court and drank tea at the National’s People Congress, I couldn’t help but feel incredibly grateful for the rare experience.
I would highly recommend this program for anyone who has an interest in international or comparative law. The experiences that this trip has afforded me will last me a lifetime. I am so thankful that I was able to take part in such an incredible program.
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