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Lawyers and Judges get Penn State Law experience in Istanbul

Turkish Tax Court Judge of seven years Sukru Say is among the group of international legal practitioners who completed the Intensive Introduction to U.S. Law & Advocacy today. “I was tremendously impressed by the interchange of ideas between students and faculty and also by the opportunity to obtain critical understanding of law in its socio-legal, comparative and interdisciplinary context,” he said. The program was held at Yeditepe University in Istanbul and taught by members of the Penn State Law faculty. Participants included practicing lawyers and judges from Turkey, Kazakhstan, Cameroon, Ukraine, and Nigeria. 

Now in its second year, the program is designed to help lawyers develop an understanding of the U.S. legal system and improve their legal English listening, speaking, and writing skills. Several program participants who are also members of the Turkish judiciary arranged for students to visit new court facilities in Istanbul.   

“That was one of the highlights of the program,” said Professor William Fox, distinguished scholar in residence at Penn State Law. “The daily lectures and exercises were intense so getting some time away from the classroom was a welcome break. I felt extraordinarily privileged to work with such outstanding lawyers and, in particular, with this group of highly dedicated Turkish judges,” he said.
In addition to classes in contract law, tax law, and antitrust law, this year’s program featured a one-week course on advocacy skills development. Judge D. Brooks Smith of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit delivered a lecture on the importance of an independent judiciary. Students were able to choose to attend for three weeks or the one-week legal English portion of the program.
According to Judge Say, “The Penn State Law professors, who are renowned and well-respected leaders in their fields were committed to seeing their students succeed and always helped us to develop our ideas, understanding and knowledge. I have learned to analyze and think of legal situations and problems in a completely new way.”
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