Some good ideas are good for everyone. Almost 15 years ago, NYU School of Law generated great fanfare in announcing that it would become the first global law school. Other law schools soon followed. Now virtually every American law school enjoys significant international reach. Faculty, staff and students at the University of St. Thomas School of Law too are actively engaging our global community. In this issue, we are delighted to describe the global reach and significant impact of the St. Thomas law school community.

I begin with our current students and graduates. Our alumni have found meaningful careers throughout the world. Several alumni and current students are serving our country through military service overseas. We are proud of the sacrifices these fine men and women are making on our behalf and on behalf of citizens of other countries. Capt. Jaime Espinosa, class of ’07, recently wrote to us that as Air Force liaison officer to the central Criminal Court of Iraq, he works alongside Iraqi nationals helping to build the very foundations of the Iraq legal system. Another example is Allison Laffen, class of ’05. Allison promotes the rule of law in Micronesia by serving as legislative counsel to the Federated States of Micronesia. Allison’s principal duties include drafting legislation and advising members of the Micronesian Congress on proposed legislation.

St. Thomas faculty have worked to expand our curriculum with international and comparative law offerings. The Rome Study Abroad Program, now looking forward to its fourth year, is an institutional commitment. On an individual level, our newest colleague, Professor Chinwe Esimai, will teach a seminar on Law and Finance in Emerging Markets. It will integrate her scholarly focus on how securities regulation can promote Africa’s emerging capital markets. Professor Robert Delahunty annually offers a course on Public International Law, his area of scholarly expertise as well. Our alumna Marie O’Leary, class of ’06, describes Delahunty’s course as inspiring Marie to pursue her current position as a legal associate at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

Through these courses, as well as Professor Joel Nichols’ course on International Human Rights and Professor Teresa Collett’s course on International Law and Catholic Social Thought, our students are prepared for a career that most lawyers will undertake in some capacity: representation either of domestic clients engaging in legal transactions abroad or of international clients needing legal representation here in the United States.

Just as important, our faculty engage in research and scholarship that has international implications. I already have mentioned the scholarly agendas of professors Esimai and Delahunty to name a few. In this issue, we feature the important work of Professor Mariana Hernandez-Crespo. Through her scholarly writing, and direction and implementation of the UST International ADR Research Network, she is working to establish a Latin American network of experts on alternative dispute resolution. The experts are working together to promote a more participatory and fundamentally fair process of dispute resolution in their own countries. The ADR Research Network is a remarkable project that brings the fruits of Professor Hernandez-Crespo’s academic research to help solve real problems and promote social justice in a vital part of our world.

I invite you to read this most recent issue of St. Thomas Lawyer. Take the time to learn about the exciting ways in which the St. Thomas community is working to promote greater understanding, law and justice throughout the world.


Thomas M. MenglerDean and Ryan Chair in LawUniversity of St. Thomas School of Law

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