Eilbhe Harrington – Law Plus – Texas 2017/18
“The experience surpassed my expectations and was rewarding, academically, socially and culturally. I was able to choose modules that really interested me. Negotiation was an experiential module where we worked in competitive groups on real-world cases working closely with group tutors. International Human Rights Law and International Law modules were delivered by professors who had worked in international tribunals and corporations and in classes with a wide international range of views. I also studied Capital Punishment. The whole experience has allowed me learn a lot about law but also to grow in confidence and develop a greater perspective on many issues.
One of the thing best parts of study abroad that made my experience so memorable and enjoyable was the friendships and connections I made with both American students and exchange students from around the world. We learned American law together but also about the law and culture in each -others countries. We socialised and travelled together and build friendships that I hope will last. The city of Austin is also a great place to live with fantastic food, nightlife and events. Austin, state capital of Texas has lots of places to visit like the Texas Congress building and the LBJ Presidential Library. Further afield I had to opportunity to visit Dallas, San Antonio, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
The semester at the UT School of Law was a tremendous experience, one which I would highly recommend. It expanded my legal knowledge, allowed me develop professional skills and gave me insight in how American law is practiced. A three week internship in Wisconsin at the end of the semester gave me an opportunity to see it all in action, a great conclusion to a most rewarding semester.”
Zara Murphy (Law Plus) - Los Angeles Federal District Court Summer Externship Programme 2018
“This year I was delighted to be selected by the School of Law to participate in a three-month legal externship in Los Angeles, California. My time was split between the Los Angeles Superior Courts and Federal District Court (for the Central District of California). I spent two weeks in the Superior Courts and ten weeks in the Federal District Court. The Irish American Bar Association (IABA) and the University of Limerick School of Law generously sponsor the programme. Four other law students from UCC, TCD, UCD and QUB also participated in the externship. The IABA helped to organise accommodation and acted as a sponsor and guide throughout the visa process and during the externship. The members of the IABA, our host families, the judiciary and our sponsor Mary O’Neill were overwhelmingly hospitable throughout our stay.
The role of a summer extern is a much-coveted one in American legal spheres. I was expected to prepare memos, case briefs and draft orders for my judges. The work was taxing but extremely rewarding; I had to quickly familiarise myself with a different legal system in order to execute the work expected of me. The externship allowed me to garner insight into the judicial decision-making process, to better understand the factors that judges consider when sentencing and to observe legal arguments presented by skilled orators. Additionally, the programme is culturally beneficial. The IABA organised numerous social events that helped to integrate the externs and to fully savour the Californian way of life. I would urge all UL law students to apply for this programme. The externship provided me with illuminating and inspiring insight into international law and future career paths.”
Zara Murphy pictured with the Honorable Terry J. Hatter Jr, Federal District Court Judge for the Central District of California.
Katie Matthews (Law Plus) - Los Angeles Federal District Court Summer Externship Programme 2017
"I recently completed my three-month externship in Los Angeles. The externship is organised by the Irish American Bar Association, a group of Los Angeles lawyers who are of Irish descent. Two weeks were spent in the State Superior Court, and ten weeks were spent externing in the Federal Court. Although the work was extremely challenging, I cannot recommend this experience enough. I was expected to prepare case memos advising the Judge on the correct course to take in line with US law. As a result, I gained an in-depth insight into the American State and Federal Legal systems and learned a great deal from the staff and the Judge in chambers who were very helpful.
As well as the externship, the Irish American Bar Association organised cultural events and trips during my time in Los Angeles. One such occasion was a trip to the Hollywood Bowl - a world famous music venue in the Hollywood Hills - to see Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga. Attending these events provided a unique opportunity to build friendships and connections in the American legal sector that will be of benefit in any future career. This externship is an incredible opportunity, both educationally and culturally. The standard of work required is high, but the benefits are more than returned."
Alan McCabe (Law Plus) – Los Angeles Federal District Court Summer Externship Program 2016
"I spent 3 months working both in State Court in LA County and in the United States Courthouse for the Central District of California. This externship was the obvious next-step in broadening the horizons of my legal education by presenting me with the opportunity to understand the workings of the judicial decision-making and enforcement processes."
Sean Beatty (Law Plus) – Los Angeles Federal District Court Summer Externship Programme 2015
"I was extremely lucky to be selected by the School of Law, UL, to take part in the 2015 Summer Externship Programme in the Los Angeles (United States) Federal District Court. The externship lasted for three months and involved working in the chambers of federal judges based in Los Angeles. The programme is organised by the Irish American Bar Association (IABA) which selects one student from each of five law schools in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Once all five students were selected, we found accommodation in L.A. together and applied for our visas..."
John Crowley (Law and Accounting) – Los Angeles Federal District Court Summer Externship Programme 2014