Students Tell Us ...
Kengo Kawai (2008 participant from University of Tokyo)
The Duke-Geneva Institute provides interesting courses and the opportunity to meet and interact with students from all over the world. Visits to various international organizations, as well as speakers at the afternoon seminars, broadened my perspective towards international business and non-profit activities in many ways. Attending the Institute immediately prior to starting the LL.M. program at Duke helped me adapt to the American law school education system. I gained a better understanding of a typical work load and how classes are carried out (i.e., active student participation). Getting to know J.D. students at the Institute was also a big help to me once I was back at Duke. I cannot forget to mention the beauty of Switzerland. The scenery is outstanding and will surely surpass your expectation. My favorite memory is the dinner cruise on Lake Leman. It was simply fantastic. I strongly recommend the Duke-Geneva Institute.
Birgitte Bogelund (2007 participant from the University of Copenhagen)
The Duke-Geneva Institute is a great way to spend the summer. The classes offered are extremely relevant and useful when practicing or studying law in a small country such as mine and the combination of local and American professors highlights the international perspectives and different ways of thinking. Since there are a limited number of classes, all the program participants get to know each other really well and strong bonds are forged quickly even though the program lasts only one month. The connections - both personal and professional - will last for a long time. The coordinators plan tons of activities in Geneva and the surrounding area to introduce participants to Swiss culture and history. All in all, you come home with a broader perspective, a great resume, and about fifty new friends.
Nicholas Gangemi (2007 participant from La Trobe University in Australia)
I have recommended the Duke-Geneva summer program to all of my friends. From the first day, students were introduced to new concepts of legal thought, discussed global issues and wrote on decisions from U.S. Courts; and the teachers were incredible to say the least! Day in and day out, their enthusiasm, excitement, and knowledge of the law was almost overwhelming. From drafting a contract for building a power station in the Sultan of Oman, to discussing exit taxes in European Tax Law, the material presented will be enormously useful for legal practice in the future. But it didn't stop there! Duke organized outings almost every day and students had the opportunity to sit in on a United Nations hearing, as well as tour other international organizations such as the World Trade Organization and the International Committee of the Red Cross. Any participant of this program will come away with an invaluable learning experience while having made friends from around the world.
Raymond Sandoval (2007 participant from University of the Philippines)
Being a participant in the Duke-Geneva Institute in Transnational Law was immensely enriching. Having been taught by both American and European professors, the summer course provided valuable insights into the similarities and differences between the two legal perspectives. The summer course likewise directly exposed me to the American legal education system, constituting valuable preparation for future LL.M. studies in the U.S. I also count myself fortunate to have been under excellent European professors, one of whom is the current United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights while Countering Terrorism and a former member of the U.N. Human Rights Committee, and another who was the former Head of the International Committee of the Red Cross' (ICRC) Legal Division. Furthermore, the summer course provided all participants the rare opportunity to make friends from all over the world, and to establish valuable networks with current and future lawyers who will become leaders in their respective regions and practice fields. Finally, studying in Geneva by itself made being a participant in the summer course so memorable. The quaintness of the French-speaking city belies its significance in international affairs. Geneva is a lovely city to live, work and study in: most cities would be hard-pressed to match the quality of life of a city framed by the tranquility of Lac Leman and the impressive Jet d'Eau, with the imposing snow-capped peaks of Mont Blanc on the horizon. Geneva's proximity to Paris, Lyon, Chamonix, Milan, and other wonderful cities in neighboring France and Italy, as well as to many cities within Switzerland, allowed many participants to easily embark on exhilarating weekend trips. In sum, the Duke-Geneva Institute in Transnational Law was a truly worthwhile experience.
Jeffrey Ward (2007 participant from Duke Law School)
I had grand expectations for the Duke-Geneva program, and it exceeded those expectations. Our professors were superb and offered diverse, comparative legal perspectives on practical and relevant legal issues. Perhaps the program's greatest asset, though, was its participants, who hailed from two dozen different countries and therefore turned every conversation - whether about the law or about our favorite desserts - into a cultural exchange. Beyond that, the food was good, the hotel was comfortable and conveniently-located, and Geneva was a beautiful city that was difficult to leave, even for short weekend trips to the mountains or to the Montreux Jazz Festival. I learned a lot, I made friends from around the world, and I wish I could do it all over again.