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J. Matthew Szymanski Rule of Law Program for U.S. Students

Tim and Annie meet with ROL Alumnus David Zhou

Chinese Host

Our US law students are hosted by Peking University’s School of Transnational Law (STL) in tropical Shenzhen, adjacent to Hong Kong. See http://stl.pku.edu.cn. STL’s 4-year graduate school combines a US-style Juris Doctor degree with a Chinese Juris Master degree. Its JD courses are taught in English by mostly American and other Western professors. Its faculty also includes visiting US professors and judges, most recently US Justice Samuel Alito. See http://stl.pku.edu.cn/news-and-events/u-s-supreme-court-justice-teaches-at-stl. Our two-week program occurs in late May, while STL remains in full academic session but before many US summer legal jobs begin.

2016 Program

In early 2016, as a complement to our ten-year-old program for Chinese law students in the US, we launched this reciprocal program for US law students in China. From May 21 to June 4, at the beginning of their summer break, two law students from the University of Virginia (UVA) met with Chinese lawyers, law professors, law students, and government officials, observed government and legal proceedings, and traveled around southern China. See photos here. We and our partners covered most/all of their costs except for their US-China airfare.

2017 Program

From May 21–June 3, 2017, four law students from Yale, UVA, and George Washington University participated in our 2nd annual program. The two-week program included meetings with Chinese lawyers, law professors, law students, and government officials; observation of government and legal proceedings; and travel around southern China and Hong Kong, with a side trip to Shanghai. We and our partners provided a $1,000 stipend to each student and cover all program costs (including in-China travel), but students remained responsible for their own US-China airfare. See flyer for the 2017 program.

U.S. Participants

Any US law school may participate. To be eligible, students need only be US passport holders and have Mandarin fluency. Although English is the primary language of instruction at STL and is spoken fairly widely in Shenzhen, Mandarin fluency is essential for meaningful participation in this program. Each participating law school will select students in cooperation with USAI.


China-United States Exchange Foundation (www.cusef.org.hk)

Eligibility Requirements

• Currently pursuing an American law degree

• Interest in Chinese law or US-China relations

• Strong verbal and written communication skills

• Demonstrated fluency in Mandarin

• U.S. citizenship

Application Requirements

• Current résumé

• Cover letter (in Mandarin)

• Two references

Please submit these materials via email to jmszymanski@gmail.com.

For more information on our ten-year-old program for Chinese law students in the US, please click here. For all other inquiries, please contact :

Mary Sue Bissell

USAI Vice President and Executive Director

E-mail : mary.sue.bissell@usasiainstitute.org

Phone: 202-544-3181