Study Abroad Summer Highlights

Albany Law School’s students often fan across the globe in the summer, taking law positions on three continents and getting hands-on legal experience in a wide variety of law firms and court systems.

Through the New York State Bar Association’s International Law Section’s Summer Law Student Internship Project, students obtain positions in law firm offices in Prague, Vienna, Guatemala City, and Mexico City, as well as Bergamo in Italy.

Other students participate in the law school’s Paris Summer Comparative Law Program.

Nicole Cooper

Nicole Cooper '15 - Ireland

This summer I had an invaluable experience studying abroad at the University College of Dublin (UCD), where I took classes on International Children’s Rights and Legal and Ethical Issues in Global Health. In addition to my studies, I worked at the historic Four Courts, interning with a barrister who specializes in immigration and asylum law. Observing various trials involving Irish immigration, medical malpractice, defamation, and workers' compensation law taught me a great deal about the similarities and differences between Irish and U.S. laws. And of course the weekends were open for traveling, so in my free time, I visited Belfast, Galway, the Dingle Peninsula, and Killarney, which was my favorite!

Akkerman in South Africa

Hannah Akkerman '15 - South Africa

"This summer, I had the opportunity to represent South African residents through my internships as a law clerk at the High Court of South Africa and as a legal intern at the Impact Litigation Unit at Legal Aid. My first day at the Impact Litigation Unit began at the Alexandria township distributing blankets to young leaders caring for their families. To hear their stories and the hardships they suffered was heartbreaking, but to see the hope build in the children’s eyes after receiving something as minimal as a blanket for the winter was heartwarming. To be able to see first-hand how my legal internship at the Impact Litigation Unit benefited South African residents was an experience I will never forget."

Victoria Graf

Victoria Graf '15 - France

"The Paris Comparative Summer Program was an amazing experience. The program was organized in such a way that the students needed to be self reliant, but if students had questions they had a number of resources at their disposal. The first part of the program was a comparative French and U.S. constitutional law class and was comprised of only U.S. students. For the second part of the program, students were able to choose between a comparative corporative class, a comparative fundamental rights class and a comparative trial practice class. All of the classes incorporated both French and U.S. students."

Deirdre Barthel '14

Deirdre Barthel '14 - South Africa 

"I was clerking for Judge Margie Victor at the High Court of South Africa, in Johannesburg and Pretoria. With Judge Victor, I attended her trials, met with counsel in her chambers, performed research for cases and wrote a few of her opinions. Additionally, I met with judges at the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein and justices at the Constitutional Court of South Africa and observed the oral arguments before them. I also went to the Legal Resource Center, which is the law firm that has represented Nelson Mandela his entire life, and prepared a memorandum on a current legal issue before them."

Emily South Africa

Emily von Werlhof '14 - South Africa

"For someone that wants a career in international law, the chance to intern in South Africa is an amazing opportunity. I spent the first half of my summer interning for a judge in the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg. The second part of my summer involved working on immigration and refugee issues at the Legal Resources Center in Cape Town. Both internships made for an exciting summer that was very rewarding. There are not many places where you can be exposed to comparative international law, gain practical experience and pet cheetahs on the weekend!"

Kevin Gagliano '13

Kevin Gagliano '13 - Guatemala

"Most of my work has consisted of reviewing international business contracts, as well as helping with trademark applications. I am learning a lot about the law by reading over the firm's work in English, and my knowledge of Spanish has increased a lot since beginning at the firm. The people I have met through working at Aczalaw are very friendly, professional, and accommodating. I've gotten to do a lot of sightseeing, including going to the beach and climbing to the top of an active volcano."