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Current student, recent grad help Penn State Law professor publish book on COVID-19

One of the most valuable experiences for Penn State Law students is the opportunity to collaborate with professors on high-impact projects and publications. A current student and a recent graduate had exactly that opportunity when they helped Professor Samuel C. Thompson Jr., publish his recent book.
Samuel Thompson, Steven Truong, and Richardson Jean

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – One of the most valuable experiences for Penn State Law students is the opportunity to collaborate with professors on high-impact projects and publications.

Current student Ngu Huu Truong (Steven) and recent graduate Richardson Jean had exactly that opportunity when they helped Professor Samuel C. Thompson Jr., Arthur Weiss Distinguished Faculty Scholar and Professor of Law at Penn State Law in University Park, publish his recent book, The Deal Lawyer’s Weapons in the War on COVID-19.

For lawyers negotiating business deals and transactions, the COVID-19 pandemic has introduced a multitude of new federal policies, regulations, initiatives, and issues to navigate. Thompson’s book covers a wide range of business law topics in connection with the COVID-19 crisis to help deal lawyers make the best decisions and strategies for their clients in this shifting legal landscape.

The combined efforts of Truong and Jean proved invaluable.

“I was very fortunate to have them work with me,” Thompson said. “Steven and Rich helped me immensely, and the book is a better product because of their assistance.”

Truong, an S.J.D. candidate at Penn State Law, co-authored two of the book’s chapters, focusing on the drafting of acquisition agreements (Chapter 9) and bankruptcy issues (Chapter 10).

“It’s a huge privilege and an honor to work with Professor Thompson, who is a leading expert in this field,” Truong said. “Being a co-author on two chapters of this book is a huge boost for me professionally.”

Jean, who earned his J.D. from Penn State Law in May 2020, provided legal research assistance and editorial comments and suggestions for much of the book.

“I enjoyed every minute of working with Professor Thompson, he’s obviously a brilliant and accomplished man,” Jean said. “I became his research assistant while I was at Penn State Law because I knew that I would learn something from him every day, which is exactly what happened when I assisted him with this book.”

Truong earned an LL.M. degree from Penn State Law in May 2020 and began work on his S.J.D. here this fall. Truong’s relationship with Thompson began when he was an LL.M. student and enrolled in the professor’s course on mergers and acquisitions and has continued ever since, with Thompson now serving as Truong’s S.J.D. faculty advisor.

“It is an indication of how small the world is that I served as a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Vietnamese War, and today I have the opportunity to work collaboratively with Ngu, a great Vietnamese lawyer,” Thompson said.

Prior to beginning his studies at Penn State Law, Truong was a practicing lawyer in Vietnam and had engaged in the legal industry there for a decade. Once he has completed his S.J.D., Truong aspires to return to Vietnam and become an academic lawyer focusing on mergers and acquisitions.

Jean will join the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office as an assistant state attorney in January 2021, following passage of the Florida Bar Exam.

Published by Practising Law Institute (PLI) Press, The Deal Lawyer’s Weapons in the War on COVID-19 is a supplement to Mergers, Acquisitions, and Tender Offers, Thompson’s five-volume treatise originally published in 2010 and updated each year. For more information about the Weapons book, read Thompson’s recent blog post on deallawyers.com.

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