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John Marshall Law School Professor Helps Open First Law School in Bhutan

Professor Mark Wojcik of The John Marshall Law School in Chicago has been working at the Jigme Singye Wangchuck School of Law — the first law school in the history of the Kingdom of Bhutan, a country of 750,000 people located between China and India — in Thimphu, Bhutan since July.

Wojcik's work at the law school is part of the Fulbright Specialist Program, which sends U.S. faculty and professionals to serve as expert consultants on curriculum, faculty development, and institutional planning at academic institutions abroad. Leading up to the beginning of classes, Wojcik helped teach a month-long orientation program.

“It’s an incredible honor to help launch the first law school in Bhutan, a country that went from being an absolute monarchy to a constitutional monarchy less than ten years ago,” Wojcik said. “The Bhutanese Constitution entered into effect in 2008 and this new law school is going to train the lawyers that the country will need to implement that Constitution.”

The law school’s first class has a total of 25 students—13 women and 12 men—from all parts of Bhutan. Students were chosen from a national pool of 499 applicants. Successful applicants then took a special version of the LSAT. The top 50 candidates were then interviewed, and 25 were admitted based on their scores, grades, and a personal interview.

Although Wojcik’s grant recently finished, he volunteered to remain for seven additional weeks to work with the students, faculty, and administrators as they adjust to their new roles. He will also use this time to research Bhutanese law and legal developments, and to teach classes using comparative law materials from the South Asia region.

Fluent in several languages, Wojcik has taught and lectured in 11 foreign countries, including the University of Lucerne in Switzerland, the Free Law Faculty of Monterrey in Mexico, Vytautas Magnus University School of Law in Lithuania, and the University of Cagliari in Sardinia, Italy. He also founded the Global Legal Skills Conference, an international legal skills conference that has been held in the United States, Costa Rica, Mexico and Italy.

Wojcik has been a faculty member of The Jon Marshall Law School since 1992, teaching international law, international business transactions, lawyering skills, torts, and sexual orientation law. He is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association, president-elect of Scribes - The American Society of Legal Writers, and a board member of the Legal Writing Institute. He is an active member of the American Bar Association and the Association of American Law Schools. 

Posted on Oct 02, 2017 by Sara Anderson | Comments (0)
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