Thursday, October 14, 2010

Share your thoughts

The world of LRW has changed remarkably in the short span of ten years that I have been teaching our first-year LRW course out here in Sacramento, CA.  At McGeorge, we have an exciting new two-year program that covers our LRW instruction and a lot more.

It's called Global Lawyering Skills, and the title is entirely apt, as we cover, over the course of the two years and six units of the full program, many of the skills required of attorneys who work in a global environment.

Hence, we introduce our students to international law in the first year and then give them a major international issue as part of a full case file that they take from initial pleading through appeal in their second year.  Along the way, they gain instruction in client interviewing and counseling, case file management, drafting of inter-office memos, letters to clients, pleadings and points and authorities in support of (or opposition to) trial motions.

And it all ends with a full-blown appellate brief that is filed with a fictitious federal circuit court that has a full panoply of court rules issued for the students to comprehend.  We like to say at McGeorge that we produce "practice-ready" lawyers, but this program takes that claim to a higher level.

If the students have any complaint about the course, it is that they are required to do twice as much work for six units as they normally encounter in podium courses of comparable unit value.  But, when they actually get experience in a real-world setting (like summer internships), they sing our praises.

Undoubtedly, many law schools are moving in the same direction.  Feel free to share your school's program with all of us.


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