A WORLD OF OPPORTUNITY THROUGH AKRON LAW

INTERNATIONAL & COMPARATIVE LAW

Go global at Akron Law!

Drawing upon extensive real-world international legal experience in Asia, the Pacific, Europe, and other parts of the world, our expert faculty and administrators equip you with the knowledge and experience you need to transcend international borders in your future career.

Through coursework, symposia, overseas internships, study abroad programs, and contact with our international alums, Akron Law offers specialized guidance and the opportunity to design an education and career path suited to your international law interests.

Akron Law also provides you with the opportunity to gain valuable international experience in the classroom or abroad. We have a host of active relationships with foreign universities, host scholars from overseas, attract students from around the world, and even offer courses that enable you to engage in mock cross-border negotiations exercises. Akron Law also supports study abroad opportunities around the world.  We even offer an innovative dual country, tri-city program in Japan and South Korea. Through this program, you can acquire practical skills, learn more about the cross-border practice of law, and interact with legal experts in Asia.

Distinguish yourself by going global at Akron Law.


Video: Careers in international law program

Matthew Wilson, President of the University of Akron, speaks about the unique ways to internationalize a legal career.


International law experts

Distinguish yourself at Akron Law. Take advantage of the global experience and international expertise of our faculty. In fact, a significant number of our practice-oriented faculty have substantial international experience. 

Matthew J. Wilson, President| Bio
President Wilson has 25 years of international experience in legal, business and educational matters in the United States, Japan, Korea, the Philippines, and the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. He lived in Asia for over half of this time, and is fluent in Japanese. President Wilson specializes in international business law, intellectual property law, international dispute resolution, comparative law, and Japanese law. From 2011 to 2014, he served concurrently as an international scholar at Kyung Hee University Law School. In this capacity, he developed a collaborative relationship with the University and taught international negotiations each summer at its campus in Seoul, South Korea. His publications include articles and books in both English and Japanese regarding jury trials, trial advocacy, cross-border litigation, and comparative law, among other things. He has appeared on prime-time Japanese television, South Korean radio, and news programs around the world. He is one of the most renowned speakers on combining a career in the law with international interests.

Elizabeth Knowles, Assistant Clinical Professor of Law | Bio

Professor Knowles teaches the Immigration Clinic and Asylum Law. She previously served as Executive Director of the American Bar Association's Immigration Justice Project.

Martin Belsky, Randolph Baxter Professor of Law | Bio
Professor Belsky has a rich and diverse background in legal practice and academia. Among other things, he is an expert on international law, oceans, and coastal law. In addition to writing numerous articles and books on these topics, Professor Belsky has helped organize, as well as participate in, numerous conferences on international law. He also served as chief counsel to the Special House Committee on the Outer Continental Shelf (offshore drilling). Professor Belsky studied at the Hague Academy of International Law and at Cambridge University.

G. Kristen Barnes, Associate Professor of Law | Bio
Professor Barnes has experience working in France as an in-house reinsurance legal consultant for SCOR (Société Commerçiale de Reassurance). In addition to her work experience, she was honored with several international fellowships involving international law, global institutions, and foreign languages. Professor Barnes has focused much of her scholarship on the European Union and North Africa. She teaches comparative law and comparative constitutional law.

Sarah M.R. Cravens, Interim Co-Dean and Associate Professor of Law | Bio
Dean Cravens has substantial experience in the U.K., including a masters degree from Cambridge University. Her areas of interest include legal ethics and judicial role in an international context. Her activities outside of the United States have involved England, Australia, and New Zealand.

John (Jack) P. Sahl, Joseph G. Miller Professor of Law, and Director of The Joseph G. Miller and William C. Becker Center for Professional Responsibility | Bio  
Professor Sahl is a frequent national and international speaker, consultant, teacher, and expert witness. He has served as a visiting professor at the CEIDA Institute in Rome, Italy. Among his extensive presentations, Professor Sahl delivered “Training Lawyers Across Borders: How Film and Documentaries Promote Law, Morals, and Professional Responsibility” at the Facultad Libre De Derecho De Monterrery, Mexico. He was also appointed to the ABA Commission on Ethics 20/20 Inbound Foreign Lawyer Working Group.

Patrick H. Gaughan, Associate Professor of Law | Bio   
Professor Gaughan is the executive director of the Innovation Practice Center. He earned his M.B.A. from Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, and he is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in International Business. His doctoral dissertation is on “The Internationalization of Professional Service Firms: The Case of U.S. Law Firms.”


International law courses

At Akron Law, we have a host of international and comparative courses that will enrich your understanding of the cutting-edge legal issues involved in an international career. In addition, we permit students in good standing to study abroad in any of the ABA-accredited study abroad programs. Regardless of whether you remain in Akron or want to explore an overseas destination, we will equip you with the tools necessary to succeed in an international career.  International and comparative courses that we may offer at Akron Law include:

  • Global Tort Law
  • International Law
  • International Business Transactions
  • International Trade
  • International Intellectual Property
  • International Patent Law
  • International Patent Prosecution
  • International Contracting Strategies
  • International Commercial Arbitration
  • Comparative Law
  • Comparative Constitutional Law
  • Conflicts of Law
  • International Negotiations
  • Immigration Law
  • Independent Study (international topic)

PROFILE

STUDY ABROAD: A SPRINGBOARD TO AN INTERNATIONAL PRACTICE

When I entered Akron Law, I had no idea about what area of law I wanted to practice in. Having spent some time in Asia before law school though, I had hoped to return there in a professional capacity some day.

The University of Akron

Joseph Falso


Many years before he was named as our Dean, Matthew Wilson visited Akron Law from Tokyo to speak to us about international opportunities in the law including global careers and study abroad. Dean Wilson is the preeminent speaker in the country on these topics. Under Dean Wilson's guidance and direction, I studied in Tokyo during my final semester of law school. My credits transferred back to Akron Law with no problem. It was an amazing experience that I’ll never forget, and has had a major impact on my life.

I now live in Tokyo with my wife (who is Japanese) and our son, where I work as a director of a Japanese company that provides global trademark and regulatory services.

I landed this exciting job through a contact that I met when studying abroad in Japan. In my current position, I recently assisted another Akron Law student who studied abroad in Tokyo by facilitating a legal internship at my company. This Akron Law graduate is now practicing law in Australia.

For me and other law students, the first step into a career in Asia was through study abroad. Akron Law was a major supporter of me, and will continue to be a great resource for current and future Akron Law students who are interested in international law.

Joseph Falso
Class of 2006
Director, naexasCompass Group
Tokyo, Japan

2-year J.D. program for international lawyers and law students

At Akron Law, foreign lawyers or applicants who have earned a first degree in law outside of the U.S. can transfer credits to acquire a J.D. degree in only two years. Details.

Visiting International Scholars 2015-2016

Koji Higashikawa, Professor of Law Kanazawa University (Japan)
Wang Jintang, Vice President of Law School & Professor Qingdao University of Science & Technology (China)
Yu Kai, Professor of Law Qingdao University of Science & Technology (China)