Summer Practicum Prepares Jordanian Law Students for a Legal Career

September 2008

Approximately 35 law students from eight public and private universitieswere selected from more than 100 applicants to participate in the third annualsummer practicum for law students. The practicum took place over a two-weekperiod in June 2008 at Jordan University. During thesession, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) promoted understanding ofthe practice of law through skill-building lectures, classroom activities,field visits and an externship.

This year’s program marked a significant step in institutionalizingpractical legal education for Jordan’s future lawyers and judges. In the past,the sessions were taught by international experts, but this year’s practicumfeatured lectures by local law professors with ABA ROLI support. These localexperts volunteered their time and expertise to teach moot court skills, legalresearch and writing and contract drafting.  To emphasize the need tobetter connect students to the job market, the program included guest lecturerssuch as forensics experts, attorneys and judges and study trips to theJordanian Parliament and the Palace of Justice.

The practicum was judged successful by the students, who reported anincreased awareness of modern legal areas (such as mediation and forensicsmedicine) and an improved understanding of Jordan’s legal system. Using theskills obtained during the practicum, each student was assigned a two-weekexternship at a local court, non-governmental organization or law firm. As hasbeen the case in the past, it is hoped that many of these externships willresult in employment opportunities with their host organizations. ABA ROLI isalso working with universities to make externships a formal part of lawcurriculum.

For more information on ABA ROLI’s work in Jordan, contact Kathy McEnany atkmcenany@staff.abanet.org

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