I am Qiong Tao, a candidate for the Master of Laws degree in International and Comparative Law at The George Washington University Law School. I earned a bachelor’s degree in International Economic Law, at East China University of Political Science and Law. During my undergraduate education, I had a chance to study at the Law School of City University of Hong Kong as a visiting student in the fall of 2008. That experience gave me a better understanding of the “Rule-by-Law” concept. In the summer of 2007, I also attended a program held at the University of Maryland where I learned the criminal and procedural law of the United States by attending trials in Washington D.C. and visiting jails. However, it still was difficult for me to adjust to studying at the George Washington University Law School. At the beginning, the different legal system and language barrier presented a significant challenge. Thanks to the help of the professors, advisers and fellow students, I have gained experience through my internships and adapted to the busy and meaningful life in law school.
Students can find out about the many internship opportunities available to GW Law students at the school’s Career Development Office. All you need to do is to make an appointment with the advisors. Usually, they will give you some instructions such as how to write an impressive resume or what the employer is looking for. After polishing your resume, do not hesitate to bid on the job positions posted on Simplicity and ISIP job posting systems; believe or not, I got my internship of choice this way. This fall, I had a short term consultant appointment with the staff of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), of the World Bank. I was assigned to do work for the Investment Generation department within the IFC. I researched regulations and administrative rules on China-related foreign direct investment (FDI) issues and I drafted legal opinions for the Investing Across Borders (IAB) section. In addition, thanks to the information provided by the career center, I have been offered a great opportunity to work in the Office of Hearing, of the Department of Transportation this winter break. From this experience, I am beginning to learn many valuable specifics related to the U.S. legal system.
Professors and students are warm-hearted to international students. In terms of the legal writing class, international LL.M students are divided into several sections. Each section is led by a professional International Teaching Fellow (ITF), who is either a practicing lawyer or a knowledgeable tutor. The skills taught in the class are practical, as they are exactly what I have been asked to do in court. The first time I wrote my memo, the fellow students within the Writing Center helped me a lot. They corrected my grammar and structure mistakes, gave me some suggestions on the organization of my written work and shared their thoughts on some particular issues. Owning to the efforts of my ITF and the fellow students, I have become familiar with the blue book, and I have mastered the skills to write memos, step by step.
The strong regional reputation, gifted scholars and teachers, promising career development, and D.C. location definitely make the school a great option for international students to study law. I really enjoy my life at GW Law!