Mānoa: Law School's new Doctor of Laws degree garners strong international interest

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Posted: Jun 21, 2016
UH Law School SJD planning committee members, with Program Director/Professor Tae-Ung Baik, at left.
The UH Board of Regents has approved a new Doctor of Laws degree at the UH Law School, which is already accepting applications for Fall 2016 from students who have completed an LLM – Masters of Law – or JD degree.
The new SJD (Scientiae Juridicae Doctor) has been in development for several years at the William S. Richardson School of Law on the UH Mānoa campus, and has received broad international support. Korean legal scholar Professor Tae-Ung Baik has been named SJD Program Director.
The new SJD program calls for a year in residence at the Richardson Law School, with seminars and courses to support students in preparing their dissertation proposals and launching their research. The goal is for students to submit finished dissertations by the end of their third year of candidacy.
“By offering this degree, we join the most prestigious law schools while also enhancing the experience of all our students from across the globe,” said Law School Dean Avi Soifer.  “We have a remarkably broad and deep faculty with particular expertise in international law, comparative law, indigenous law, environmental law, business law, and the law of countries in Asia and the Pacific — all of which are of increasing importance throughout the world.”
While the SJD is primarily intended for those who teach or hope to teach law outside the U.S., it’s also aimed at those involved in policy work in research institutes and government organizations. It has often been requested by foreign-trained law scholars who are earning an LLM at the UH Law School, and who wish to continue their legal studies here.
“We have people writing us to ask if we offer the SJD because they’d like to do …

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