The Paris Program will be on hiatus for the 2014-15 academic year. We expect to offer
an updated program Summer, 2016. Please email Professor Leslie Burton with any questions
The following information refers to the Summer 2013 program and remains below for
The Summer Comparative Law Program operates in Paris each June. The program is jointly
administered by Golden Gate University School of Law, Albany Law School, and the University
of Paris Ouest (also called Nanterre). All classes are held on the Nanterre campus.
The program encourages students from other law schools to apply.
OUR PARISIAN LAW SCHOOL PARTNER: UPO NANTERRE
All of our courses will be held on the Nanterre campus. Nanterre was built in the
1960's as an extension of the Sorbonne. It has a modern, American-style campus (the
second largest in France). Nanterre welcomes 35,000 to 40,000 students every year
in all fields of studies, but it is especially renowned in the fields of Law and Economics.
The former president of France, Nicholas Sarkozy, is a graduate of Nanterre.
Nanterre University Map( Universit Paris Ouest Nanterre - Service Communication)
Nanterre is located on the western edge of Paris, near the business district (La Defense).
Paris's great public transportation system and easy walkability make all of its sights
within easy reach of Nanterre. The program will provide each student with a transit
photo Universit Paris Ouest Nanterre - Service Communication
The structure of the summer program's classes is unique. Unlike many other law schools'
programs, this program does more than transport Americans to a city in Europe, where
they might be taught in isolation by the same professors they would have at home.
Instead, each class is team-taught in English by both a French professor and an American
professor. Further, the program seeks to integrate its American students into the
French classroom experience by welcoming French students into the program. In fact,
we often have 20-40 French students attend, along with some students from other EU
countries. Most classes meet in the afternoon, usually between 1:30 and 5 pm, leaving
ample time for inter-cultural activities and sightseeing.
The program is divided into two session lasting two weeks each. During the first session
(weeks 1 and 2), all students take a single two-unit course, Introduction to French
& EU Law. The course is co-taught by our French co-director, Professor Anne Deysine
of Nanterre, and an American Professor. Classes typically meet four days a week, usually
three 60-75 minute sessions each afternoon between 1:30 and 5 pm. The classes include
lectures by faculty, lawyers, public officials and judges from law firms, courts,
During the first session we will take off-campus excursions, visiting major international law firms and at least two of the three French Supreme
Courts (Civil/Criminal Court; Administrative Court; and the Constitutional Court)
to attend lectures by members of the Court). We also will take an overnight trip to
Brussels to visit the European Commission and speak with commissioners.
During the second session (weeks 3 and 4), students will choose one of several two-unit comparative law courses.
In the second session, classes will include French and other EU law students, and
will be team-taught in English by a French law professor from the Nanterre faculty
and an American law professor. Students will attend class four days a week for two
or three 60-75 minute sessions each day, usually between 1:30 and 5 pm, sometimes
followed by a 60-90 minute panel or mini-conference on a topic of comparative law.
Panels consist of presentations by judges, well-respected academics, and lawyers,
each of whom have insight into particular aspects of foreign and comparative law.
2013 Course offerings
The courses offered in Summer 2013 are: Introduction to French & EU Law; Comparative
Corporate Law; Comparative Fundamental Rights; and Comparative Trial Practice. Introduction
to French & EU Law is required and worth 2 units. The student will choose one other
course from among the other three, each of which is worth 2 units. Total units for
the summer are 4. No prerequisites exist for any of the courses. See heading "Course
Descriptions" for more detail.
Students have the option to be housed in dorm-style single rooms at the beautiful
Cit International Universitaire de Paris (CIUP). CIUP is a small-scale international city in miniature for more than 5,000 students.
Created in 1920, it contains 37 houses (maisons), each in a unique architectural style
honoring a different country.CIUP is located in the southern section of Paris (14th
arrondissement), not far from the Luxembourg Gardens. It has its own Metro stop, making
all of the sights of Paris convenient. The cost for a single room is $1250 for June
The program will arrange for month-long unpaid internships in the Paris metropolitan
area for interested students. The internships will take place in July, immediately
following the June academic program. There are two different opportunities: private
firm placements and judicial placements.
The private firm placements allow students to work at small and medium-sized French
firms with international practices or in the offices of large international firms.
(Most of the work is transactional but some litigation work is available.) Past placements
have included the best French firms as well as international players like Ernst &
Young; Latham & Watkins; and Allen & Overy. No French language skills are necessary
for the private firm placements; the work is in English.
Judicial internships allow students to work one-on-one with French judges, researching
issues related to foreign and international law for criminal and civil trial courts.
French language skills are required for the judicial internships. Students must pay
a fee of approximately 400 euros for any of these placements. The deadline to apply
for private firm internships is March 15. The deadline to apply for judicial internships
is March 1.
Of course, the program is not all work and no play. Few cities offer students as much
to see or do as the incomparable "City of Lights." Moreover, the program will organize
group activities, such as a cruise on the Seine, a group dinner in the Latin Quarter,
and a night out on the town with French law students.
Introduction to French & European Union Law (2 credits)
For Participants from the United States & Common Law Countries
This introduction to French and European Law has two main goals. The first is to provide
a solid foundation for understanding both the French legal system, which relies on
statutory law and codes as its primary source of law, and the unique European legal
system, which relies on treaties as its primary source of law, along with regulations
and directives.The second goal is to study key legal terminology in order to avoid
common misunderstandings that arise between French and American lawyers. In particular,
we will explore some of the fundamental differences that lurk behind deceptively similar
terms, such as contrat in French and contract in English.
This course will also cover a wide variety of particular topics. We will examine the
specialized French court system, paying attention to the three French Superior Courts
and to the difference between the French Conseil Constitutionnel and the U.S. Supreme
Court. We will examine how courts are integrated into the larger European system and
look at the two most basic areas of civil law, contrat and responsabilit dlictuelle,
which are the functional equivalents of contract and tort in Anglo-American law. In
both cases, we will examine the profound effects that European law has on French law
and courts and will emphasize the need for students to understand the European legal
system as a complex continuum in which domestic laws and courts interact directly
with international laws and courts. We will illustrate the operation of this system
through a case study.
During the two-week course, students will have opportunities to visit French courts;
interact with a number of French, European, and American lawyers; and take a field
trip to Brussels, where they will hear lectures by members of the European Commission
or its staff.
Comparative Corporate Law (2 credits)
This course examines the various strategies (regulatory and governance) that are used
in different legal systems to address corporate law: mediating the tensions between
owners and managers, majority owners and minority owners, and the corporation and
society. The primary comparison will be between French/EU law and U.S. law.
Comparative Fundamental Rights (2 credits)
This course examines issues of equality (civil rights), including hate speech (France,
Germany, U.S.); same-sex marriage (France, Denmark, U.S.); sexual harassment (France,
U.S.); affirmative action (France, India, U.S.); discrimination remedies (France,
Britain, U.S.); religious apparel in public schools (France, Turkey, U.S.); and reparations
Comparative Trial Practice (2 credits)
This course explores trials as conducted in Europe (and particularly, in France) with
trials as conducted in the U.S. The difference between the inquisitorial system and
the advocacy systems are many, including the use of juries and the rules about the
admission of evidence. The policies behind the differences are also discussed.
Tuition & Costs
U.S., Canadian, & Common Law-Country Students:
- Tuition: $4,950 for four units of semester credit.
- Fees: $ 610 for welcome dinner, reception, and cruise on the Seine; Month-long French
Metro Card: Overnight field trip to Brussels; Books, readers and other program materials;
Receptions with French lawyers, judges and government officials; and French liability
- Total program cost (not including housing): $5,560
- Housing: $1,250 for a single room in the Cit Universitaire dorms from June 1-30.
- Meals: These figures above do not include meals. During the week, CIUP maintains a
restaurant with subsidized meals for dorm residents. Three set menus are available
each weekday for prices between $4-7 per meal. Students must budget for weekend meals.
Plan on spending between $500-1,000.
- Airfare: Airfare is expected to be between $1,000-1,500.
- Entertainment and misc: These numbers will vary widely by individual but students
should plan to budget for about $500.
Requirements For Admission
U.S. and Canadian Students, & Other Students from Common Law Countries / Systems:
- Students from the United States must have completed at least one year of legal studies
and be in good standing at an accredited law school.
- Students from Canada and other common law countries must have completed at least one
year of graduate legal studies, or three years of undergraduate legal studies, and
be in good standing at an accredited school.
- After acceptance, each applicant must submit an official transcript and a letter of
good standing from the home law school Registrar, along with the Deposit Form.
- The Deposit Form must be accompanied by a $250 non-refundable deposit fee, which will
be applied toward the program fees. (Only students who are not accepted can receive
a refund of the application fee.)
For more information, U.S, Canadian, and common-law-country students should email
the program at firstname.lastname@example.org.
EU Students & Students from Other Civil Law Countries:
- Participating European Union students must have completed at least three years of
legal studies in France or another European country.
- Students from other civil law countries/systems must have completed at least three
years of legal studies and must have a strong academic record.
- Applicants must submit proof of fluency in English.
- Applicants must submit an official transcript and a letter of good standing from their
The program is jointly administered by three law schools: Golden Gate University School
of Law, Albany Law School, and University of Paris Ouest (Nanterre).
The Co-directors of the Program are:
Leslie Burton of Golden Gate University School of Law holds a BA magna cum laude from University
of Portland, a JD cum laude from Santa Clara Law School and an LLM with Highest Honors
from Golden Gate University School of Law. She is a Professor of Legal Writing and
directs the LLM in U.S. Legal Studies program. She is a Fulbright recipient and has
taught in Prague, Brno, Istanbul, and Germany. Before becoming a member of the faculty,
she was a clerk to the Chief Judge of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Sacramento, a deputy
district attorney and a bankruptcy litigator. She will not be teaching in Paris this
summer, but will be the Administrative Coordinator of the program.
Eric C. Christiansen of Golden Gate University School of Law received a BA from the University of Notre
Dame, an MA from the University of Chicago Divinity School, and a JD from New York
University School of Law (where he was a Root-Tilden Public Interest Law Scholar).
He was a Center for Transitional Justice Fellow, resulting in a position as a foreign
law clerk to the Chief Justice of the South African Constitutional Court. He currently
teaches U.S. and comparative constitutional law and researches in the areas of comparative
constitutional history, social welfare rights, and the rights of sexual minorities.
Prior to joining academia, Professor Christiansen was in private practice, specializing
in international capital markets for the London office of Latham & Watkins. He will
be teaching Comparative Fundamental Rights.
Christine Sgarlata Chung of Albany Law School graduated from Amherst College magna cum laude and from Harvard
Law School cum laude. She was appointed assistant professor of law in 2010, joined
Albany Law's faculty in 2007 as assistant clinical professor of law and director of
the Securities Arbitration Clinic. She was previously a partner at Goodwin Procter
LLP, where she was a member of the firm's securities and white-collar crime practice
groups. She also served as Branch Chief of the Enforcement Division of the United
States Securities and Exchange Commissions. Professor Chung's research interests include
regulatory architecture and regulatory reform, risk management (including systemic
risk management), compliance, corporate governance and feminist jurisprudence, with
a focus on the challenges facing financial institutions and their customers, investors
and employees. She co-directs the program and will also teach Comparative Corporate Law.
Anne Deysine of the University of Paris X (Nanterre) holds her JD (Licence et Maitrise en Droit)
and LLM(DES) from the University of Paris II School of Law, and her Ph.D. in political
science, University of Paris. She also holds a degree from the Paris Institut d'Etudes
Politiques.Professor Deysine is the author of numerous works of legal scholarship,
in French and English. She regularly teaches Comparative Political & Legal systems,
International Business Transactions and Drafting & negotiating of International Contracts
as well as cross-cultural communication and negotiation. In the Paris summer program
Professor Deysine is a co-Director of the summer program and also co-teaches Introduction to French and EU Law.
Katrin Deckert of Nanterre is a Professor as well as Deputy Secretary-General of the International
Academy of Comparative Law. She studied law in different universities in France and
Germany. She holds a PhD in German, French and European corporate and securities law
from Panthon-Sorbonne University (Paris, France) and the University of Hamburg (Germany).
She was Research Fellow at Pantheon-Sorbonne University, research and teaching assistant
at Panthon-Assas University in Paris, Research Assistant at the Max Planck Institute
for Comparative and International Private Law in Hamburg, Lecturer in German Law at
Paris-Est Crteil University, and Senior Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institute
for Comparative and International Private Law. She teaches and researches in German,
French and European civil, corporate and capital markets law as well as in comparative
law. She will be teaching Comparative Corporate Law.
Doni Gewirtzman of New York Law School holds a BA (High Honors) from Wesleyan University and a JD
from UC Berkeley College of Law. He joined the faculty after serving as the Vanderbilt
Fellow at Vanderbilt Law School and as the Co-Associate Director/ Acting Assistant
Professor of Law at New York University School of Law's Lawyering Program. His areas
of interest are constitutional law and theory and he has written extensively on these
subjects. He was the recipient of NYLS's teaching award in 2010, 2011, and 2012. Before
entering academia, Professor Gewirtzman was a litigation associate at Paul, Weiss,
Rifkind, Wharton, and Garrison and a Skadden Fellow at Lambda Legal Defense and Education
Fund. While at Lambda, he represented the mother of Brandon Teena, a Nebraska teen
whose murder was portrayed in the film Boys Don't Cry, in a wrongful death suit against
a local police department. Gewirtzman will co-teach Introduction to French and EU Law.
Stphanie Hennette-Vauchez of Nanterre is a Professor of Public Law. After graduating from Sciences Po, she
obtained her PhD at the Universit Paris I Panthon Sorbonne in 2000, and was appointed
as an assistant professor in 2001 and a full professor in 2002. She also was a Fulbright
post-doctoral research scholar at Northwestern University in 2000 and a Marie Curie
Fellow at the European University Institute under the European Commission's FP7 from
2008 to 2010. Her main research interests lie in the field of legal theory, human
rights law and critical approaches to human rights law theory. She is strongly committed
to the introduction of critical approaches to human rights law -- and of feminist
legal theory in particular -- in the curriculum of French law schools. She will co-teach
Comparative Fundamental Rights.
Marjolaine Roccati of Nanterre obtained a Masters in Private International Law at Paris Sud University
(Paris XI), a Diploma of English Translation in Legal Field at the Institute of Interpretation
and Translation, and a PhD in European Law and Private International Law at Nanterre.
She has conducted research at the Swiss Institute of Comparative Law (Lausanne, Switzerland)
and at Max Planck Institute in Comparative Law & Private International Law (Hamburg,
Germany). She worked at the Court of Justice of the European Union (Luxembourg), in
the Office of the General Advocate. She is now a Lecturer in Private Law at Nanterre
University, where she teaches Introduction to Law, Civil Law (Contracts & Torts),
UK Civil Procedure, Private International Law and European Law. In the summer program
she will co-teach Comparative Trial Practice.
Laurie Shanks of Albany Law School holds both a BS and a JD from Arizona State University. She
Joined Albany Law School in 1989 after being in private practice in Phoenix, where
she concentrated on criminal defense and personal injury litigation. She was the training
director for the Maricopa County Public Defender's Office and served as a a judge
pro tem. Teaches CLE seminars and trial advocacy workshops throughout the nation.
She also serves on Judge Kaye's task force on wrongful convictions and the state bar's
committee on the future of indigent defense, as well as a referee for the New York
State Commission on Judicial Conduct. Professor Shanks is a frequently quoted resource
for reporters around the country. She will co-teach Comparative Trial Practice.
The Paris Program will be on hiatus for the 2013-14 academic year. We expect to offer
an updated program in Summer, 2015. Please email Professor Leslie Burton with any
questions at email@example.com.
Professor Leslie Burton
Golden Gate University School of Law
Co-Directors GGU/UPO Summer Law Program
Professor Christine Sgrarlata Chung
Albany Law School
80 New Scotland Ave.
Albany, NY 12208-3494
Enrollment is not limited to GGU or Albany students. Anyone can apply!
Over the eight years that GGU has operated the program, it has welcomed American students
from 34 other American law schools, in addition to one student from the UK and one
from Canada, as well as approximately 130 French/EU students. Last year we also had
a student from Romania and one from Russia.
In 2012, GGU had not yet entered into a partnership with Albany Law School. The program
enrolled 56 students, of which 34 were from French and other EU countries. GGU students
represented 16 of the remaining 22. The non-GGU students came from Ave Marie, UC Berkeley,
Charlotte, Maryland, Nova Southeastern, Thomas Jefferson, and Victoria (Canada). In
2013 we anticipate at least several students from Albany as well.
In 2011, the program enrolled 67 students, of which 29 were from French and other
EU countries. Of the remaining 38, GGU students represented 27 and other U.S. law
schools represented 11.
The 2011 figures are more consistent with enrollment in past summers. Enrollment of
American students decreased in 2012, while enrollment of French/EU students increased.
It has been more typical in previous years to enroll 42-54 American students each
year, along with 19-34 French/other EU students.
- Program will be limited to 60 U.S./Canadian/common law country students and 40 EU/civil
law country students.
- Most EU students participating in the program probably will be French nationals but
we anticipate that we may have students from other European and non-European countries
represented as well.
- Introduction to French and European Union law (2 credits) will be limited to 60 students
(United States, Canada, and other common law students only).
- The specialized comparative law elective courses will be limited to 25 students each.
Some students may not receive their first choice from among the elective courses.
Once you are accepted, you will receive a Deposit Form that you must return along
with a U.S. $250 non-refundable fee. (The fee is refundable only to students who are not accepted into the program.)
Payment in full is due by April 21. Alternatively, students can submit letters from their home school's Financial Aid
Office stating that the student has applied for financial aid to pay for the program
and that the application is pending. No course credits will be awarded until payment
in full is received.
- U.S./Canadian/common-law-country students will earn 4 semester units of credit from
Golden Gate University School of Law, except for students from Albany Law School,
who will receive credit from Albany Law School.
- EU students may arrange for credits through University of Paris Ouest (Nanterre).
- No course credit is awarded for internships.
- It is unlikely that participation in a foreign summer program could be used to accelerate
graduation. Students interested in acceleration should contact their home schools
to review this issue in light of ABA Standard 305, Interpretation 4.
- Students will be expected to attend all class meetings, prepare for classes by reading the assigned material, and participate in class discussions.
- Grades will be based on a two-hour in-class exam administered on the final Friday or Saturday of each session.
- GGU permits faculty to award the following grades: A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, and
- No mandatory grading curve will apply to these courses.
- Acceptance of any grade or credit for any course taken in the program is subject to
the policies and determination of the students' home schools.
The classrooms and law library at Nanterre are accessible for people using wheelchairs,
as are the public rooms at CIUP. French consciousness of the importance of providing
access to people with disabilities is similar to that in the United States. Paris,
however, is an old city, and its cobblestone streets and sidewalks, which often lack
curb cuts, can be very challenging to navigate. Students with disabilities who wish
to enroll in the program should consult the program directors regarding their specific
needs to be sure they can be accommodated.
Students with disabilities that may require (or have typically required) accommodations,
especially examination accommodations, should let the Golden Gate disability services
department know by April 30 at firstname.lastname@example.org. The GGU disability services office will handle accommodations for all students with
disabilities, regardless of home school. The program will make every effort to make
reasonable accommodations, but French facilities differ significantly than those of
U.S. law schools. For example, all exams in France are handwritten, and the program
needs advance notice to prepare accommodations for students who must type.
- The $250 deposit fee (due with the Deposit Form) is non-refundable (unless the application is rejected), but will be applied to the program fees.
- Except in the case of cancellation of the program, or academic disqualification from
GGU (see below), students who cancel after April 21 still must pay $2,000 to cover our housing and administrative costs.
- Students who are academically disqualified after arriving in Paris may opt to remain in the program or withdraw. Students who withdraw must vacate the
CIUP campus, but will receive no refund on their housing charge. They will receive
a refund of tuition minus a $500 administrative charge.
- Students and partners/spouses registered in the program will be covered by a French
insurance policy that provides liability insurance.
- Students are responsible for securing basic medical insurance and evacuation insurance
(for transit back to the U.S. in a medical emergency) through a US insurance company.
State Department Travel Information
Golden Gate University School of Law, Albany Law School, and the GGU/ALS/Nanterre
Summer Program in Paris, are all fully accredited by the American Bar Association