Friday, December 20, 2013

Accelerated J.D. for Foreign Trained Lawyers Program Now Accepting Applications

UALawSchool_square_transApplications are now being accepted for admission to the 2014 Accelerated J.D. program. Visit us on the web for more information.

The University of Arkansas School of Law ranks second in the U.S. in The National Jurist’s annual ranking of “Best Value Law Schools.” This marks the third straight year the School of Law has been named a top 20 “Best Value.” The law school moved up 12 places from 14th last year.
“We are particularly pleased to be recognized for delivering excellent results at an extraordinary value,” said Stacy Leeds, dean of the School of Law. “Our graduates pass the bar exam, find employment, and enter the job market with significantly less debt than students at most other law schools.”
According to The National Jurist the ranking is determined by a formula that uses “the percent of graduates who pass the bar exam, employment rate, tuition, cost of living, and average indebtedness upon graduation.”

For a detailed report of the law school’s bar passage, placement rates, and tuition and fees, please visit

UA Law Professor returns to Vilnius to teach Negotiation

Christopher Kelley taught negotiation during the week of December 9, 2013, at the European Humanities University, a Belarusian university "in exile" in Vilnius, Lithuania.  This was the third time he has taught negotiation at EHU. Maryna Kavaleuskaya taught the course with him. Ms. Kavaleuskaya was named the Best Attorney at Law of 2011 by the Alliance of Human Rights Organizations of Belarus and earned an LL.M. from the Harvard Law School in 2013.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Visiting Ph.D. Candidates from Kazakhstan

This fall, we welcomed Aigerim Ozenbayeva and Daniya Nurmukhankyzy to the Law School. Aigerim and Daniya are Ph.D. in Law Candidates at Zhetysu State University named after I. Zhansugurov in Taldykorgan, Kazakhstan.

Daniya and Aigerim have been awarded a government scholarship to do research for their dissertations in the U.S., for a little over one month. Professor Christopher Kelley serves as their foreign adviser. They are researching topics in Agricultural and Environmental Law. Professor Kelley first met Daniya and Aigerim last summer during a teaching trip to Zhetysu State University where both women are pursuing their Ph.D. in Law. Professor Kelley lead three courses in Negotiation, Legal Writing in English, and Agriculture & the Environment over a two week period. He writes about his trip in a previously published post, "A Letter from Kazakhstan".

Our guests arrived to a noisy but festive atmosphere, as their arrival coincided with the annual Bikes Blues and BBQ festival, an event that reports an attendance of nearly 400,000. They spent their first  days exploring the campus, with the kind assistance of Professor Kelley, who treated our guests to lunch and a shopping excursion. They have already seen much of the U.S. during their brief stay, visiting NYC and joining Professor Kelley in Washington D.C., to tour the Nations Capital.

Both Daniya and Aigerim wish to extend their thanks to Professor Kelley, and to the School of Law.

Monday, September 9, 2013

A Fond Farewell

Last month, we said farewell to our visitors from Yeungnam University Law School in Gyeongsan, Republic of Korea. Mr. Shin and Mr. Lee spent much of their summer with us observing courses, and immersing themselves in the U.S. legal system. Their focus and dedication was impressive. Equally impressive was their adventurous spirit. In the short time they were here, Mr. Lee and Mr. Shin toured much of Arkansas and Missouri. When they had exhausted their local options, they ventured further, embarking upon a whirlwind tour that spanned Illinois, New York, Arizona, Nevada, and California. We share with you a few snapshots from their travels.

Navajo Bridge, Arizona
Chicago River, Chicago

Hollywood, California
Beverly Hills, California
Cloud Gate, Chicago
Millennium Park, Chicago
Lake Michigan at night, Chicago
Grand Canyon, North Rim


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

World Justice Forum IV

On July 8-11, the World Justice Project held the World Justice Forum IV in The Hague, Netherlands. The invitation-only WJF was created to be "a global gathering designed to engage nearly 600 leaders, dignitaries, and innovators from more than 120 countries to address critical rule of law issues related to economic development, technology, supply chains, women’s rights, freedom of expression, and more."

Participants joined in formal plenaries and active breakout sessions, designed innovative ground-level rule of law programs, engaged with researchers and scholars during “workshop” hours, and networked with other leaders in the rule of law movement. Professor Christopher Kelley was invited to participate in the WJF IV, having previously attended the WJFs I and II in Vienna. Kelley teaches a Rule of Law Colloquium each Spring to J.D. and LL.M. Candidates at the University of Arkansas School of Law. He also has taught the Rule of Law at the Vytautas Magnus University Law Faculty in Kaunas, Lithuania.

Monday, July 15, 2013

UA Law Professor to teach part-time at Kyiv Taras Schevchenko National University

Professor Christopher Kelley has been honored by an appointment as a part-time, non-resident Professor at Kyiv Taras Shevchenko National University in Kyiv, Ukraine.  He will assist the Law Faculty's new LL.M. program in Land and Agricultural Law. 

Kyiv Taras Shevchenko National University is one of Ukraine's best universities. Professor Kelley has been teaching Legal Writing in English to students there by distance each semester for the past three years. He has also taught negotiation at Shevchenko, and, this fall, he will take his Transnational Negotiation class to Kyiv to negotiate with Shevchenko law students.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Visitors from Yeungnam University Law School

This summer, the School of Law is pleased to welcome three visitors from Yeungnam University Law School in Gyeongsan, Republic of Korea.

Law Professor Sae Jin Kim and law students Doo Hee Lee and Sang Chul Shin arrived bleary eyed and exhausted after a sixteen hour trip that began with a train ride from Daegu to Seoul and ended when they landed at XNA international airport in Bentonville, Arkansas.

Professor Kim served as a high ranking Judge for twenty-plus years before accepting a teaching position at Yeungnam University. YU is in a rural area of Korea, a sharp contrast from the cosmopolitan atmosphere of Seoul, and Professor Kim has found that he prefers the quiet of the country. Both Lee and Shin just completed their first year as law students at YU, having already completed their undergraduate degrees. They will have two more years of law school before obtaining their LL.B. This is their first trip to the United States, but they have already discovered many of NW Arkansas' gems, including Beaver LakeDevils Den State ParkWilson ParkDickson Street, and the Fayetteville Farmers Market.

The first week of any new international experience is always the hardest. English is taught in the Korean system from the time students enter primary school and continues through secondary school, but because the focus is on reading, and because English is not widely spoken in Korea, adjusting to a world of English speakers can be challenging and exhausting. Then there are the practical issues such as parking, navigating the UA bus system, and getting to the grocery store. Contrasting the U.S. legal system with the Korean legal system and adjusting to the U.S. classroom and it's unique culture are the educational tasks going forward. I am happy to report that our guests are up for the many challenges.

Our visitors toured the campus with the kind assistance of the UA admissions office and the invaluable interpreting skills of Dr. Geeboo Song, a Professor in the Political Science department, who came on short notice to assist. Dean Don Judges, Associate Dean of Graduate and Experiential Learning and E.J. Ball Professor of Law delivered guest welcome baskets to our visitor's hotel and took them to lunch. With the kind permission of our faculty, our visitors have been able to observe a number of courses including Professional Responsibility taught by Professor Howard Brill, Vincent Foster University Professor of Legal Ethics & Professional Responsibility, and Constitutional Law taught by Professor Mark Killenbeck, Wylie H. Davis Distinguished Professor of Law.

Our guests will be with us for much of the rest of the summer before returning to Korea. Professor Kim will be returning to the School of Law in 2014 to spend his sabbatical year with us researching Civil Litigation Discovery, a concept that is unfamiliar in the Korean legal system. He will bring with him his wife and thirteen year old daughter to join in the experience.

It has been a pleasure getting to know our guests. Their quick laughter and easy going attitude, coupled with their sincere and earnest focus on making the most of their time at the Law School have endeared them to our community. We hope that they will enjoy their time with us as much as we have enjoyed their presence and look forward to getting to know them better as the summer progresses.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Immigration Overhaul and Higher Education

By Cory Weinberg


The U.S. Senate passed a monumental bill to overhaul immigration law on Thursday that higher-education leaders hailed as giving foreign-born graduate students unprecedented access to green cards, a provision that research universities said would help them compete for top talent by giving the students greater certainty of landing jobs after they graduate.

The bipartisan bill, which passed, 68 to 32, with 14 Republicans voting in favor, also would provide a gateway to college for 650,000 young people, known as "dreamers," who were brought to the United States illegally as children. Under the bill, they would be eligible to receive federal student aid and to petition for citizenship five years after graduating from high school and completing some college or military service.

Although the bill, S 744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013, is viewed as unlikely to pass in the House of Representatives, it is widely considered a win for higher education.

Foreigners who earned Ph.D.'s at American universities would be eligible for green cards, while foreign students who completed master's degrees or Ph.D.'s in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (the STEM fields) could petition for a card.

"The real game changer in the bill for universities is in the green-card section, where advanced-degree graduates for STEM fields have green cards stapled to their diplomas," said Craig Lindwarm, assistant director for international issues and Congressional and governmental affairs at the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities.

Through an amendment passed on the Senate floor, the bill would also keep colleges exempt from the national cap on H-1B visas, allowing them to temporarily employ researchers who are not citizens. It also would cut and limit student-visa fees.

In a letter on Wednesday urging the Senate to pass the bill, the heads of 14 higher-education associations heralded the legislation's benefits for "dreamer" students, writing that it would serve "our long-term economic growth by providing these young people a way out of the shadows and into our work force."

Steven M. Bloom, director of federal relations at the American Council on Education, lauded the bipartisan nature of the bill—which was crafted by four Republicans and four Democrats, known as the Gang of Eight—and said major research universities and community colleges especially had reasons to applaud.

"To tell you the truth, there was never huge things we were really concerned about, whether it was H-1B or green cards or Dream Act. These weren't incredibly difficult things to push across the finish line," Mr. Bloom said.

Higher-education lobbyists drew support from businesses in Silicon Valley as well as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which pushed to expand citizenship eligibility for high-skilled workers.

Though the House is expected to draft its own bill instead of taking up the Senate's, Mr. Bloom said the higher-education provisions were mostly uncontroversial in that chamber as well. The Senate bill also would strengthen border security and provide a 13-year pathway to citizenship for most immigrants in the United States illegally. Republicans in the House have resisted the latter provision.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

LL.M. Professors Lecture in Korea

This is a repost of a blog written by Professor Susan Schneider. You may view the original post here.

From June 15-21, Professors Christopher Kelley and Susan Schneider visited Korea on a trip sponsored by Yeungnam University Law School in Gyeongsan, Republic of Korea.

We are proud to have a University of Arkansas alumnus serving as Dean of the YU Law School. Dean Taehuan Keum received his LL.M. in Agricultural & Food Law from the University of Arkansas School of Law in 2011.

In 2013, the University of Arkansas School of Law signed a cooperative agreement with YU Law School, and Professors Kelley and Schneider's trip was our first coordinated visit, followed closely by a visit to Fayetteville by two Korean law students and a YU Professor.

Korea’s educational system only moved to adopt a U.S. style professional law school system in 2007. In a highly competitive environment, the government selected only 25 universities to offer the new law programs. YU was one of those selected and built a beautiful new law school building to house its law program.

Dean Keum shepherded the new program successfully through its first formal evaluation assessing its curriculum, faculty, facilities, and endowments. YU was pleased to receive excellent scores on this evaluation.

Dean Keum is also responsible for founding the Institute of Agricultural & Food Law at YU, and he now serves as its Director.

The Institute is based on the principle that the development of agriculture should be accompanied by the development of agricultural law. This Institute will consider how agricultural law supports and directs agricultural policy and how agriculture law is intertwined with food law. Its goal is to be at the center of  agricultural and food law in Korea.

Professors Kelley and Schneider’s visit to Korea included an invitation to speak at the Institute’s inaugural symposium, Conservation and Conversion of Farm Land from the Public Interest Perspective.

Professor Kelley delivered a lecture on conservation programs and sustainability challenges in U.S. agriculture, and Professor Schneider spoke on sustainability in agricultural practices and the role of agricultural law.

Throughout the trip, the professors were treated to traditional Korean cuisine and given lessons in the rich food culture of this beautiful country.

Dean Keum, his family, and the faculty at YU were gracious hosts. Dean Keum also arranged for meetings and an opportunity to lecture at Seoul National University, Dean Keum’s alma mater and a meeting with senior professors and the SNU Law School Dean.

It was a very productive trip, with the opportunity for the exchange of ideas on food systems, agricultural production, and legal culture.  And, it was an amazing opportunity to witness first hand the important work of one of our international LL.M. alumni.

Appreciation is extended to Dean Keum for this opportunity.

Friday, June 14, 2013

2013 Institute of Legal Studies International Symposium Welcomes UA Law Professors

Next week Professors Susan A. Schneider and Christopher R. Kelley will travel to Yeungnam University in Seoul, S. Korea to participate in the 2013 Institute of Legal Studies International Symposium.   The Symposium will focus on conservation and conversion of farm land from the perspective of public interests. Symposium leaders Professor Hejung Kim, Director of Yeungnam University's Institute of Legal Studies and Professor Taehaun Keum , Director of the Yeungnam Institute for Korean Agricultural and Food Law hope that the event will be an opportunity to reflect upon the present and future of Korean and U.S. farm land.

This symposium also celebrates the creation of the Institute for Korean Agricultural and Food Law which was established by Yeungnam University School of Law in October of 2012. The institute will operate under the direction of LL.M. Alumnus Taehaun Keum who completed his Master of Laws in Agricultural and Food Law in 2011 at the University of Arkansas School of Law. We look forward to developing a collaborative relationship with Yeungnam University, and will be posting more information on the Symposium here in the near future.



Thursday, June 13, 2013

A Letter from Kazakhstan

University of Arkansas School of Law Professor Christopher Kelley recently traveled to Kazakhstan to teach three courses to students at Zhetysu State University. Kelley reflects on his experience in this Letter from Kazakhstan.

Dear Reader,

I write to you from Taldykorgan, Kazakhstan. The largest of the "stans," Kazakhstan extends from the Caspian Sea to China. To the north is Russia; to the south are Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan. Kazakhstan dominates Central Asia – spin the Google Earth globe east, stay west of China, point your curser mid-continent, and Kazakhstan will appear before you.

Getting to Kazakhstan from Arkansas is not easy as spinning the Google Earth globe half-circle. Traveling from Fayetteville to Taldykorgan, with stops in Atlanta and Amsterdam followed by a three-hour drive from Almaty to Taldykorgan, took me about 40 sleepless hours. Eleven time zones separate Fayetteville and Taldykorgan. 

Yet, globalization being what it is, my seatmate from Amsterdam to Almaty was a law clerk for a federal magistrate in Illinois. He was traveling with his Kazakhstan-born wife to visit her family in Almaty and Astana. Globalization has its gaps, however. When their young son awoke from a nap asking for a bagel with peanut butter, my last Cliff bar was the closest substitute. KLM airliner galleys have yet to be stocked with bagels or peanut butter.

I am in Taldykorgan to teach for two weeks at the Zhetysu State University named after I. Zhansugurov. Professor Zhansugurov was killed at Stalin’s behest, a fate suffered by many other intellectuals during Stalin’s reign over the Soviet Union. During those years, Kazakhstan was a destination for exiles – Trotsky, Dostoyevsky, and Solzhenitsyn, for instance, were exiled to Kazakhstan. Later, Kazakhstan suffered more insidiously when it became the principal test site for Soviet nuclear weapons, and residents of an area known as The Polygon were used as human guinea pigs to assess the bomb blast’s effects on those nearby.

Today, Kazakhstan is a young nation, having declared its independence in 1991. Appropriately, Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev is investing heavily in educating Kazakhstan’s youth. Indeed, I am here because of his initiative to bring foreign teachers to Kazakhstan and to send Kazakhstan students abroad to study. In addition to teaching here, I am the foreign dissertation adviser for two Zhetysu State University Ph.D. in Law candidates. This fall, these students – Daniya Nurmukhankyzy and Aigerim Ozenbayeva – will come to the University of Arkansas School of Law to research their dissertation topics and to observe our classes.

From my Zhetysu State University classroom, I can see the blue minarets of a large mosque, the snow-covered mountains that straddle Kazakhstan and China, and dozens of Soviet-era apartment buildings. Now with a population 100,000, Taldykorgan was on the verge of extinction until President Nazarbayev decided to make it the Almaty region’s administrative center. Mostly desert, the Almaty region is thinly populated outside of the city of Almaty. On this day, the air is gritty with wind-blown sand and powder-dry soil.

Like the students I have taught in Ukraine, Moldova, Belarus, and Lithuania, the students here are at once conscious of their nation’sancient traditions; its decades as a part of the Soviet Union; its modern, international influences; and the continuing challenges of shaping a new society. They walk sidewalks where the remaining few and fading Soviet icons have been supplanted by ubiquitous signs touting the products of the world’s leading consumer brands – Coca-Cola, Adidas, Danone, Samsung, and the like. And while not immune to the lure of consumerism, most are committed to living in a way that makes a positive difference, implicitly if not explicitly recognizing they will opportunities and responsibilities that their parents did not.

The changes in the past twenty-five years in Eastern Europe and Eurasia have been profound. They have tested and will continue to test personal and institutional resilience and the robustness of values. Because of this, they offer insights for all of us, especially to lawyers interested in how the law and its institutions lead and respond to changes of all sorts. 
The casebooks we use in American legal education tell of changes in American and international law. Yet, necessarily, their accounts are brief; three sentences might transverse three or more decades. A better way to teach the interplay and interaction of time, events, and the law is to be in a place where change is accelerated, as its is in young, developing countries. Alongside of this better way is yet another – bringing students and faculty from new, transitional, and developing countries to the University of Arkansas School of Law.

Fortunately, the Law School is doing both. In the past two years, as part of a course, our students have traveled to Moldova and Belarus. This fall, others will travel to Ukraine. Indeed, when the next semester ends, several of our students will have traveled to Moldova and Belarus and to Belarus and Ukraine, places none of them thought they would be when they entered the Law School. 
And students from transitional and developing countries have come and continue to come to the Law School. The Law School’s Graduate Program in Agricultural and Food Law has attracted students from Belarus, Ukraine, Russia, Nigeria, Malawi, Ethiopia, and other transitional and developing countries. Our new Accelerated J.D. Program will include Nigerians in its first class this fall.

Combined, this is a change for the Law School — a valuable change, a change worth nurturing. And it is a change that reflects the Law School’s current skilled and energetic leadership, which has been remarkably supportive of new ideas and new ways of teaching at the Law School.
I am teaching three courses here in Taldykorgan – negotiation, legal writing in English, and agriculture and the environment. I have taught each of these courses before. Still, I have been asked questions here that I have never been asked before; I have used illustrative examples to explain concepts that I would not have thought of using had I not been teaching these students; and I have had to adapt to teaching across a wide range of English language skills. This has changed me in small, but significant ways. I have learned. And part of what I have learned is that I want to return to Kazakhstan. 

I wish you well in Arkansas. My students here wish you the same. Kazakhstan hospitality is legendary, for good reason. I am eager to introduce the two Kazakhstan Ph.D. students I am advising to Arkansas. I know they will learn from you, including from your gracious hospitality.

I wish you the best.

Christopher R. Kelley

Friday, June 7, 2013

Duke University Study Shows the benefits of international collaboration

This blog is a re-posting of an article published in The Chronicle of Higher Education. View the original article here:

Interacting With International Peers in College May Confer Lasting Benefits

By Karin Fischer

American students who interact more with their classmates from abroad don't just gain greater cultural awareness but also develop skills that benefit them after graduation, according to a new study by researchers at Duke University.

The study, which is described in an article published in the Journal of International Students, draws on data from comprehensive alumni surveys of some 5,675 former students from the 1985, 1995, and 2000 graduating classes of four highly selective private research universities. The surveys were administered in 2005, approximately five, 10, and 20 years after those classes graduated. (The institutions are part of a pre-existing research consortium and agreed to share survey data.)

As part of the surveys, alumni were asked a series of questions about the extent to which they had interacted with groups of fellow students while on campus, their level of involvement in certain academic and extracurricular activities, and how much their undergraduate institution had contributed to their development in 21 areas. Only the responses from former students who indicated they were American citizens were examined in the Duke researchers' analysis.

Over all, 67 percent of the respondents from the 1985 cohort reported having some or substantial interaction with classmates from overseas, while 75 percent from the Class of 1995 and 79 percent from the Class of 2000 said they did.

The researchers—David Jamieson-Drake, director of institutional research at Duke, and Jiali Luo, an assistant director of institutional research at the university—found that students who had substantial engagement with peers from abroad reported significantly higher levels of skills development in a variety of areas.

While some of those skills, such as speaking a foreign language or relating well to people from different racial, national, or religious backgrounds, would seem a natural result of greater cross-cultural exposure, other areas might be less expected. For instance, the analysis found that understanding the role of science and technology in society and synthesizing and integrating ideas and information both positively correlated with international interaction.

Alumni who had high levels of international engagement while in college were also more likely than their peers to question their own, and society's, beliefs.

Participating in cultural or ethnic clubs, having contact with faculty members out of the classroom, or taking courses outside the major were strong predictors of greater international interaction, the study found. By contrast, membership in a fraternity or sorority had a negative association with international engagement.

The researchers acknowledge that there are limits to the study: It relies on alumni's self-reported improvement in skills development, not on more-objective measures of student learning such as standardized-test scores, and experiences during the years since graduation could have affected the respondents' retrospective perceptions of their college education.

Mr. Jamieson-Drake is also quick to say that the study does not prove causation but rather that there is a "correlation with, a strong association with" international engagement and the development of certain skills. "It's a strongly contributing factor."

In recent years, American colleges have begun to enroll more international students, particularly at the undergraduate level, in part with the goal of providing domestic students with more diverse and cross-cultural experiences. But, as Mr. Luo and Mr. Jamieson-Drake note, there have been few empirical studies of the extent to which international students contribute to the cultural and intellectual life on American campuses from the perspective of domestic students.

Not only do their findings suggest there are real benefits, but they indicate there are actions colleges can take to foster international interaction, such as creating more interdisciplinary courses, urging faculty members to engage more with undergraduates, and encouraging students to expand their social networks beyond culturally homogenous groups, like fraternities and sororities.

"Institutions," Mr. Luo said, "can build bridges."


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Professor Kelley begins summer teaching schedule abroad

Just as the spring semester comes to a close, Professor Christopher Kelley begins a busy summer teaching schedule abroad at a number of prestigious institutions, making stops in Lithuania, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan. Highlights of recent and upcoming visits are below, with more to follow throughout the summer.

On May 6th, Professor Kelley was in Vilnius leading a Negotiation Workshop to participants in the Kurk Lietuvai program in Lithuania. Kurk Lietuvai (Invest in Lithuania) is a group of young professionals graduating from the best Universities around the world, who have returned to Lithuania to work in the public sector. Participants complete a twelve month rotation with different institutions working on projects of national importance such as attracting foreign investments, entrepreneurship, innovation, EU assistance, and social welfare - all while imparting their skills and knowledge of the public sector. Professor Kelley's visit will add to the groups instruction on Negotiation skills.

 On May 16th, Professor Kelley will conclude his Legal Writing in English course at Taras Shevchenko National University in Ukraine . This course has been offered to Taras Shevchenko students remotely via video conference since 2010. Kelley has taught Legal Writing in English remotely to a number of institutions abroad including students at Moldova State University in Chisinau, Moldova; the Free International University of Moldova, Chisinau, Moldova; the Institute of International Relations of Moldova, Chisinau, Moldova, and Vytautas Magnus University, Kaunas, Lithuania.

Professor Kelley's long-standing relationship with Taras Shevchenko National University in Ukraine continues in the fall with a two-credit course in Transnational Negotiation at Taras Shevchenko National University, this time taking UA law students to Ukraine for a one of a kind experience giving them an opportunity to develop cross-cultural negotiation skills in an international setting. Students will negotiate with Shevchenko law students, and visit many of Kyiv's cultural and historical landmarks. Enrollment for this unique course is limited. Interested students should contact Professor Christopher Kelley by email at

From May 27th - June 7th, Kelley will be in Kazakhstan to teach courses on Agriculture and the Environment, Negotiation, and Legal Writing in English at the Law Faculty of Zhetsyu State University. This will be his first visit to Zhetsyu State University, located in Taldykorgan in the Almaty Province. The University is named for Ilyas Zhansugurov, a Kazakh poet and writer who was the was the First President of the Writers' Union of Kazakhstan from 1934 to 1936.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Faculty Feature: Teresa Farah

This spring, International Transactional Attorney and University of Arkansas School of Law Adjunct Professor Teresa Farah, returned to teach the Law of International Contracting. Having taught courses in International Finance, International Business Transactions, and International Contracting since the spring of 2010, her students have consistently benefited from Farah's twenty-plus years' experience in international business. Accomplishments that were recognized by the American Bar Association selecting her as one of ten Legal Rebels, an award which in 2010 recognized solo practicioners with innovative and interesting practices.
In May, Farah will travel to Vytautas Magnus University in Lithuania to speak at the International Scientific Conference presenting a lecture on Ethical Issues for the Lawyer in International Negotiations. She will also teach two courses and will be blogging about her experience here.
 Professor Farah's remarkable biography is below.
 Teresa Farah is an international transactional attorney who has worked in international business for over twenty years. She currently runs her own international legal practice, TM Farah Law Firm, Inc., out of NW Arkansas. In her practice, she advises clients who are interested in growing their business globally or who already have a global presence. She renders services to clients ranging from Fortune 50 companies to governments as well as small to medium size enterprises.
Prior to establishing her own practice, Teresa worked in Dubai, United Arab Emirates for seven years, both in private practice as well as for the government of Dubai.
While in Dubai, she was the Founder and General Counsel of The Executive Office, which is the private office of the Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum. In her capacity as General Counsel, Teresa managed the legal requirements of all entities under the authority of The Executive Office of the government of Dubai, which included but was not limited to: Dubai Development and Investment Authority (the investment authority for the government of Dubai); the Dubai Mercantile Exchange; Dubai International Capital, LLC (private equity and investment firm); Dubai Energy Limited; Dubai Healthcare City (a 4.1 million square foot healthcare free zone); Dubai Industrial City; Dubailand, LLC (a multi-billion dollar, 3 billion square foot development with over 200 real estate, leisure and theme projects); Jumeirah, LLC (a luxury hotel and hospitality group, which owns/manages Burj Al Arab in Dubai, Essex House in New York and Carlton Tower in London); Dubai School of Government; and Dubai Humanitarian City.
During her tenure with the Dubai government, she was the lead counsel representing the government of Dubai in numerous joint ventures between the government and multinationals as well as Fortune 500 companies, inclusive of the following transactions: joint venture between the government of Dubai and New York Mercantile Exchange, creating the Dubai Mercantile Exchange; joint venture between Dubai Healthcare City and Harvard Medical International; and collaboration between the government of Dubai and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government to create the Dubai School of Government.
She served on the Board of Directors for the Dubai Mercantile Exchange and for the Dubai Healthcare City.
Prior to working in Dubai, Teresa worked as an international trade consultant for Xenel Industries, Ltd., a multi-billion dollar Saudi corporation involved in global trade, transportation, petrochemicals, infrastructure development, healthcare and investments.
Teresa started working in international business in Washington, D.C. as the Trade Dispute Director for the National U.S.-Arab Chamber of Commerce. In this position, Teresa developed, implemented and managed a trade dispute reconciliation service in which she mediated commercial disputes between U.S. companies and Arab companies, recovering millions of dollars for clients. She advised U.S. clients on foreign investment regulations in Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Kuwait; Islamic halal certification; international shipping; and industrial regulatory requirements for Arab countries. She also developed an arbitration service in conjunction with outside legal counsel.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Matlock Keynote Speaker at International Conference on Challenges of Sustainable Agriculture

The article below is a reposting of a UA Newswire story on Marty Matlock, professor of ecological engineering at the University of Arkansas. View the original story here.
Marty Matlock, professor of ecological engineering at the University of Arkansas, presented the keynote address at the 4th Global Feed and Food Congress April 10 in Sun City, South Africa. 
Matlock’s presentation, “The role of animal agriculture in feeding 10 billion people sustainably,” was part of a three-part session focused on meeting sustainability challenges.  
“The challenges, opportunities and potential risks related to sustainable agricultural production are a direct result of competing land uses,” Matlock said. “Agricultural production, including crops, pasture and grazing, currently utilize more than 40 percent of the Earth's surface. In order for global agricultural producers to meet the increasing demand for food, feed, fiber and fuel, while at the same time reducing inputs and impacts, we must use every tool currently available in our collective tool box and continue to develop innovative tools that address emerging problems in an efficient, earth-friendly manner. Our future success is dependent on what we do today.” 
Marty Matlock is a professor in the biological and agricultural engineering department at the U of A, serves as executive director for the university’s Office for Sustainability and is area director for the Center for Agricultural and Rural Sustainability.
 Novus International, Inc. of St. Louis, a global leader in developing animal health and nutrition solutions, sponsored Matlock’s appearance at the conference.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Free International University of Moldova Expresses its Gratitude

On Monday, April 8th, Professor Christopher Kelley travelled to Chisinau, Republic of Moldova, to teach a Negotiation Skills workshop at the Free International University of Moldova. Professor Kelley was welcomed to Moldova through the support of the Center for International Cooperation, which organizes regular events on campus for students, faculty, and staff. The workshop was a success, said Center officials, providing "a significant contribution to the internationalization of our students...[and] an important experience for them to learn from such a remarkable specialist." The ULIM posted a news release recently on their website about Professor Kelley's visit. 

The School of Law has enjoyed a collaborative relationship with the Free International University of Moldova thanks to Professor Kelley, who served as a Fulbright Scholar in Chisinau, Republic of Moldova in 2011. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Transnational Negotiation Course to be offered in Kyiv

UA School of Law Professor Christopher Kelley, Fulbright Scholar in Ukraine (2005) will be traveling back to Kyiv once again to teach a two-credit course in Transnational Negotiation. The course will offer current UA law students an opportunity to develop cross-cultural negotiation skills in an international setting.

 The course will take place over the fall break, and will be hosted by the Law Faculty of the Taras Shevchenko National University in Kyiv, Ukraine. Shevchenko has been ranked one of Ukraine's greatest universities, arguably the greatest. It is known for it's splendid, iconic red building across from Taras Shevchenko Park.

The University which is named for an iconic Ukrainian poet and artist, has a fascinating history beginning with it's establishment in 1834. Students will negotiate with Shevchenko law students, and visit many of Kyiv's cultural and historical landmarks.Enrollment for this unique course is limited. Interested students should contact Professor Christopher Kelley by email at .

Friday, April 5, 2013

Prof Kelley Leads One-of-a-kind International Experience in Belarus

Seven University of Arkansas School of Law students got a unique hands-on experience in international law when they traveled to Minsk, Belarus, as part of a course on Transnational Negotiation.

The two-credit-hour course is taught by Professor Christopher Kelley, an expert in international law and emerging legal systems in Eastern Europe, and included a week-long trip over spring break to Belarusian State University in Minsk, paid for by the students. There the American students teamed up with Belarusian law students to engage in negotiation exercises. When not in the classroom, students were invited to meet with Belarusian ministry officials and tour cultural sites.

“This is a unique opportunity in that no American law students have ever been invited to study like this in a group in Belarus before,” Kelley said. Kelley was the first American Law Professor to lecture at Belarusian State University’s law program, lecturing in English on legal writing and negotiation.

“When I did the legal writing class, I asked the Dean if he’d be open to a broader program where American and Belarusian law students could work together, and it grew from there,” he said.

Kelley took on the enormous logistical task of obtaining travel visas for his students and structuring a class around transnational negotiation.

“I’ve done similar trips before – last year I took law students to Moldova – but that was more about comparative law and the students’ own individual legal interests, and it wasn’t the same sort of structured program that we’re doing now,” he said.

While study abroad programs are popular with undergraduate students, lengthy summer abroad programs tend to be less popular in law school because law students traditionally take summer legal jobs instead. The University of Arkansas School of Law offers a summer-long study opportunity in St. Petersburg, Russia, as well as a joint summer program at Cambridge University in England with the University of Mississippi. By offering a week-long study abroad trip, Kelley condensed as much learning as possible into a short period of time.

“It can be hard to get a student to commit to a full summer abroad, especially if you’re looking at a legal career and you’re not sure you want to focus on international law,” he said. “This course with a shorter trip gives students a taste of international law and still leaves their summer free for work or a longer international program.”

Third year law student Andrew “Whit” Cox, who attended the School of Law’s St. Petersburg program in Russia, was a fan of Kelley’s approach. “The negotiations aspect of the course was a great move by Professor Kelley,” he said. “It allowed for much more in class interaction with the Belarusian students than the lectures in the St. Petersburg program.”

“We spent nearly all day, every day in the classroom. Our students have taken practical courses in negotiation, but the Belarusian students had not, so in addition to me doing some lecturing, we paired our students with Belarusian students on negotiation teams. It wasn’t an ‘us vs. them’ set up. Our students were actively engaged with the Belarusian students, which allowed them both to practice and to guide and teach,” Kelley explained.

“All of the students in the course spoke English but some were better at it than others,” second-year law student Angela May said. “So not only were we working on negotiations, we also helped the students who weren’t so strong in English understand what the issue(s) were and in a sense taught helped them with their English skills.”

The in-class exercises gave Arkansas and Belarusian students a chance to interact on a more personal level than is typical in many classes.

“I think this course was unique because the class created interaction, through legal education, with foreign students. The practical exercises that we engaged in with the students from Belarus taught me not only a lot about myself as an individual and American, but also a lot about others,” third-year law student Nick Alexander said. “One student said it all, “we are all people.” I think this theme sums it all up. It was fascinating to see the similarities in negotiating styles between everyone. I was surprised to learn that the students were more alike in their goals than not.”

“My favorite part of the trip was the exchange with the Belarusian students both in class during negotiations and after class when they took us to some of their favorite local joints,” said Cox. “On Thursday night we bought dinner and drinks for the Belarusian students at a traditional Belarusian restaurant to show our appreciation for the wonderful hosts that they were. It was truly a great trip filled with cultural exchange and diplomacy. Professor Kelley did an excellent job of putting this program together.”

Nearly all of the students who attended already had international experience through personal travel, but jumped at the chance to broaden their horizons further.

“I lived in Australia for two years as a missionary for my church, and I was interested in international law before this trip,” said law student Paul Pellegrini. “I’m definitely still interested in a career in international law after going to Belarus. Belarus was amazing!”

The experience furthered a desire to practice internationally for most participants.

“I have always been interested in the international aspects of business and law and someday I hope to live and work abroad,” May said. “Being in Belarus has enhanced my desire to work in international law.”

Alexander added, “I have always considered a career in international law and this course has strongly reaffirmed that desire.”

“I firmly believe that there is a need for lawyers in all areas of the world,” said third year law student Ben Barnett. “Everyone has the same human desires, and if you can help them achieve those, then your services will always be in demand.”

Professor Kelleys' various international law course offerings are available to interested LL.M. students as well as the J.D. students.

Monday, April 1, 2013

The School of Law launches the Accelerated J.D. for Foreign-Trained Lawyers Program

Last fall, the University of Arkansas School of Law announced plans to launch an Accelerated J.D. for Foreign-Trained Lawyers. The program would seek to recruit a small number of qualified foreign attorney's who wished to further their legal education in the U.S.

With the support of the Faculty, Staff, and Administration, the Accelerated J.D. for Foreign-Trained Lawyers was successfully launched, and will welcome its first candidates in the Fall of 2013.  The program grew out of an increasing desire for foreign attorney's to blend their legal education obtained in their home country, with the curriculum offered in a traditional U.S.- based Juris Doctor course of study.

The School of Law has been fortunate to experience the unique perspectives brought to the classroom from previous international law students, particularly within the renowned LL.M. Program in Agricultural and Food Law. In fact, the LL.M. Alumni have been a vocal support group advocating for programs like the Accelerated J.D., and have been instrumental in recruiting the first group of accelerated candidates. Among the benefits offered to accelerated candidates, is the ability to transfer in a number of credits from a students previous legal coursework outside of the U.S. into their Juris Doctor program, thus "accelerating" the time required to finish their degree. In addition, successful completion of the Juris Doctor degree will satisfy the degree requirement for eligibility to sit for the bar examination in any state in the U.S.

 Keeping the program small  has been the at the forefront of the planning and structure of the program, and will be reflected in the recruitment and matriculation of only the most qualified students. The program will be administered under the direction of Don Judges; Associate Dean for Graduate and Experiential Learning and E.J. Ball Professor of Law. Dean Judges will serve along with several members of the Law School Faculty, on the Graduate Legal Studies Committee, the committee that will ultimately make the decisions regarding admissions. We are looking forward to welcoming our first group of accelerated candidates, and will be posting updates, as well as student biographies here in the near future.