UMKC School of Law

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China Summer Abroad

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Questions or Comments:

Nancy Kunkel
Associate Director
Senior Program Coordinator
816-235-1647
umkclawoverseas@umkc.edu

Timothy Lynch
Academic Director
816-235-2390
lynchte@umkc.edu

Financial Aid Questions:

Linda Lawrence
Coordinator of the UMKC Student Financial Aid Office
816-235-1236
lawrencel@umkc.edu



Testimonials


Comments from Prior Attendees

Traversing the Great Wall. Biking to Tiananmen Square in the serene pre-dawn hours for the raising of the national flag. Leisurely strolling the wide boulevards of the Summer Palace. Devouring authentic Peking Duck. These are just a few of the amazing experiences that await you in Beijing. Attending the UMKC China Summer Law Study program was one of the best decisions I’ve made in law school.

The program provides an opportunity to see China in a way few people can. By exploring the complex and evolving legal system of a rapidly developing country, the professors provoked spirited discussion on the meaning and purposes of the rule of law. Being exposed to a system of law so divergent from our own has urged me to think more critically about the way the law functions in our own society.

Unlike many study abroad trips, the UMKC China Program provides numerous opportunities to observe the practical applications of Chinese law. A visit to the Supreme People’s Court offered a rare chance to question judges and clerks, while a trip to the Haidian District Court provided a disconcerting glimpse of criminal sanctions and trial procedure in China. Conversations with practicing lawyers—both local and foreign—hinted at some of the unsettled issues that strain the fledgling legal system.

This transformative academic experience is only one facet of the program. Over the course of three weeks, I was able to intimately explore and experience the culture of China. It is a complex country—poised on the edge of modernity, but in some respects still fiercely devoted to tradition. The incongruity of Communist Party policies and Western free market principles evident in the affluent shopping districts reflects a country still in the throes of metamorphosis.

With China’s ever increasing dominance on the global stage, any law student—no matter what area of practice he or she is interested in—can benefit from this informative and challenging program. This is truly an opportunity not to be missed!

Carla Edmondson, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2013


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The UMKC China Study abroad trip has been (and probably will continue to be) one of the best decisions I have made in law school.

I have been fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to study abroad not only in China, but also in Ireland in the past. While I cannot discredit my experience in Ireland, it pales in comparison to my experience in China. It is rare to have the opportunity to travel to a place like China and have such a great support network that has been set up by UMKC and Peking University. The classes, accommodations, and program are already set up for you. Furthermore, UMKC is fortunate to have a connection with Peking University (“The Harvard of China”). I feel privileged to have learned the Chinese legal material through some of the brightest professors in China. To top everything off, the cost of living in China was lower than Ireland so my dollar went a much longer way ($0.33 to go anywhere in Beijing on the subway---you can’t beat that!).

Absolutely no prior knowledge relating to China is required to go on the trip. I went over to China with zero ability to speak the language and very little knowledge regarding China’s history. This trip was a learning experience not only from the classroom subject matter, but more importantly a learning experience from the people and culture of China! Other students speaking both English and Chinese will help you during the entire trip, and despite the language barrier, the Chinese citizens were very polite and helpful.

I was very happy with the city of Beijing as well. Beijing is unique in the sense that it is a hybrid of having both great historical significance/sites as well as being a very modern city. The nightlife was great, and I found that Chinese bar and club owners loved having us in their establishment (it’s great PR to have an American in their club). One big concern I had going over there was the food---as soon as I got into Beijing, I realized there was nothing to worry about. You can be as wild or conservative as you want. While it was a lot of fun to try new foods (and there were many), there were other days that I indulged in Pizza Hut, KFC, McDonalds, Subway, Starbucks, etc.

The great thing about the length of the trip is that since it is only 3 weeks, a lot of people go over to China, get their credits, and still have the rest of the summer to do an internship back in the states. I decided to stay an additional 3 weeks to do an externship in Beijing (another opportunity that I definitely do not regret) at one of the biggest law firms in Asia (Yingke). Once again, no experience was required and it was a great way to stay in Beijing and continue traveling around. In my opinion, it was the easiest and most enjoyable 6 credits I will get while I am at UMKC. Also I was back in the United States by July 1, so I still had half of my summer left!

I cannot stress enough how appreciative I am for the opportunity and the experience I had on this China Study Abroad trip. The coordinators for the trip including Nancy Kunkel and Professor Lynch have been in charge for years and do an excellent job putting everything together. It really is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I urge everyone to make the leap and just do it. You will not regret it.

Mark Lacey, UMKC School of Law
China Sumer Law Program Participant 2013


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Where to begin? The UMKC China Summer Program is definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity. Plus, you aren’t going to find a better deal—school credit, touring China, and having the time of your life, all for less than I would have paid for summer school in the States. Whether you have an interest in working abroad or just want to have an experience you will always remember, this is definitely something to fit into your law school plans.

The classroom portion of the program is interesting and challenging. The Peking University campus (Beida) is huge and provides some sightseeing itself, and the on-campus facilities used for the international students are top-notch (and the refreshments during the break each day are excellent).

The “cultural tours,” as they have been dubbed, are definitely a highlight of the program. It was amazing to visit places you normally only see in picture and film. Nancy, Prof. Lynch, and the rest of their crew put together a great schedule that ensures you see the top sights and also experience the fun of China that others don’t know about. For example, the National Center for the Performing Arts (the “Egg”) in Beijing hosted the Vienna Philharmonic this past summer, and a group of us were able to procure tickets for the show—not something you would expect but so awesome!

Another great thing about the program is the free time. We had so much time to plan things to do on the side. Some went to Shanghai, others to Hong Kong; and like the Philharmonic concert, there are an endless amount of “extras” to do in Beijing (Peking duck!). Or, if you feel like sitting around in a café chatting online or getting lost in Beijing, you can do that, too. Just be sure to come back so Nancy doesn’t worry.

Finally, the staff for this program is great. Prof. Lynch and Nancy take very good care of the students as far as health, safety, and fun times go. They want everyone who goes out to China with them to come back wanting to do it again. Also, they make sure you learn something, both in the classroom and on the street.

Take advantage of this great opportunity to explore the world a bit and learn things that can have a great impact on you. Or, just go to have a blast and take lots of pictures. Either way, you won’t regret having chosen the UMKC China Summer Program. Thanks Nancy and Lynch!

If you’re still reading this, here is a sample of the top things I did in China (** = not included):
• Great Wall, Temple of Heaven, Forbidden City, the “Egg,” Olympic stadium, Tian’anmen Square, Chaoyang Theater Acrobats, Silk Market (purchases optional)
• **Concerts at the “Egg,” Morton’s Steakhouse--unlimited steak sandwiches, dinners and shopping in Sanlitun, weekend in Shanghai, Hong Kong Disneyland
• So much more but no more space! Go on the trip!

R. Blake Echols, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2013


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Having been on both the UMKC Ireland and China study abroad trips I can say with 100% certainty that the trip to China is worth it. Numerous times throughout the trip I found myself saying “I’ve never seen anything quite like this.” China’s influence and role on the world stage will only continue to grow and getting to see the real thing really helps to gain an understanding of everything. The sights were amazing, the culture interesting, and the experience unforgettable.

Ferdinand “Ferd” E. Niemann IV, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2013


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UMKC’s China summer program afforded me the chance to come to China and experience culture in more ways than I can count. My experience still continues as I write this, as I am just finishing up an internship through my law school, Lewis & Clark, at a law firm in Beijing. My short trip here began with three weeks of UMKC’s summer program, which was more than useful in providing me with a breadth of opportunities to delve into Chinese culture. As a group of law students from all around the globe, we visited the most fascinating parts of Beijing including palaces, temples, law firms, schools, halls, and of course delicious restaurants. Among the tour leaders were Peking University students and faculty from UMKC who provided exceptional attention and zeal to make our travels much more awesome. We also got the opportunity to visit one of the most beloved and ancient cities in China, Xi’an, to get a true flavor of history during our trip. The education in Chinese law that I received was invaluable and has allowed me to continue working in Beijing at a Chinese law firm. My favorite part about UMKC's summer program is the end result -- a chance to tell people that I studied law at Peking University with some of the most prestigious law professors in the world, and the most intelligent and renowned professors in China by far. An experience like UMKC’s summer program should not be missed.

Andrea R. Herman, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2013


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The UMKC study abroad program which takes place at Peking University (PKU) is an awe-inspiring experience to say the least. Despite notions concerning the lack of academic rigor associated with most study abroad programs, this is where the UMKC program shines. The professors are hand selected from the PKU staff, and they are masterful in regard to their areas of expertise; they are not transplanted American professors. The academic portion of the experience was highly rewarding and expanded my legal understanding both globally and locally.

Outside of the academic portion of the experience is physically being in China. Nothing can describe this. The sights, sounds, tastes, and wonders are omnipresent. Never was there a boring day, each tour and meal was a wonderful adventure. Nancy Kunkel, the program coordinator, is a well-seasoned veteran when it comes to travel in China, and she is a sensational person with a vast amount of practical and substantive knowledge.

If you have any doubts, I would recommend casting them away. I look back on my experience in China with great fondness, and every employer who reviews my resume is always interested in my studies at PKU.

Jagjit Nagra, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2013


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I highly recommend the UMKC China Summer Law Study program. The trip was the highlight of law school. Distinguished Peking University faculty teach the law courses and the program directors do an incredible job planning cultural and historical trips. I also had the pleasure of making many new friends! It was truly a once in a lifetime experience and something that I will remember always.

Katherine Linsey, Temple University James E. Beasley School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2013


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I would highly recommend UMKC’s China Summer Program. The program was very rewarding, both intellectually and culturally. The best aspect of this program is the ties that it has with various people/groups in China that allows you to experience things that you never would be able to experience if you visited China on your own. For example, we met with attorneys from Western firms and also Chinese firms and were able to get a better understanding of practicing law in China. Another example is sitting in a Chinese criminal trial, which is closed to the public, but with the programs ties, we were able to experience the trial.

I decided to stay for an additional three weeks and do an externship at a Chinese law firm. I would encourage prospective students to do the externship because it allows you to better appreciate the culture. One of my favorite parts of the externship was conversing with many Chinese attorneys and hearing stories about their experience with Chinese law.

Andrew Huber, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2013


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What can I say about China... Probably one of the most interesting places you could ever go. Not only because of the amazing things to see like the Great Wall and one of my personal favorites, the Chinese Acrobats, but because it is completely different than any other place. The people and the culture make China so unique and worth visiting.

I would recommend the China trip to anyone who wants something to do outside of normal class credit. China gives you the opportunity to get quite a few law school credits in a short amount of time. Because the trip is so early in the summer and only 3 weeks it gives you plenty of time to still work. One of the other main reasons I recommend the China trip is the cost. The cost to live in China is extremely cheap and the accommodations provided through the program were beyond expectations.

Nicholas Bates, UMKC School of Law
China Sumer Law Program Participant 2013


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The UMKC China program was fantastic. In addition to learning about China, an unexpected benefit was to better understand my own country’s legal system. Because of this program I am more prepared to handle domestic and international legal problems.

Michael Neal, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2012


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The University of Missouri Kansas City summer abroad program at Peking University in Beijing is by far one of the best programs a law student can do. The value of the program, the organization of activities, and the depth of Chinese law learned is unmeasureable. Not only did I learn an abundance about the law in China, I also made lifelong friends and had unimaginable experiences.

Through the program you are granted access to some of the most treasured cultural heritage sites in China, from the Great Wall to the Forbidden City to the Summer Palace. This program offered it all. One of the best things about the program that surprised me was how little I actually had to prepare for it. I didn't know a single word in Chinese and was petrified that I would be completely lost. Yet, the program carefully constructed a majority of our activities, had students from Peking University travel with us, and helped us through the whole experience.

If you’re a law student and are trying to figure out what to do over the summer, this is it. The program is short enough that you can come back and work for the rest of the summer if you want to but long enough that you get the experience of a lifetime.

To pass up this opportunity should be a crime. There is nothing to think about, they have everything planned, just start packing your bags, or start figuring out how you will explain to yourself why you were so stupid.

Timothy Reeve, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2012


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I am an attorney in Brazil and currently finishing my Juris Doctor at Saint Thomas University School of Law. A journey to China has always been part of my dreams but it seemed too distant and inaccessible. A month before summer school of 2012 I decided to do an internship and a class in China. I searched through the ABA list of accredited law schools with summer abroad programs in China and UMKC was on the list. I called and emailed several other schools but UMKC Summer Abroad in China was the school that sounded the most interesting due to cost-benefit purposes. Initially, several factors led me to decide to go to China through UMKC: (1) Ms. Nancy Kunkel was so receptive and friendly that it made me want to be part of the program; (2) the program offers classes on several Chinese topics; (3) the program was just the right amount of time, not too long, not too short; (4) the price of the tuition was reasonable; (5) the program included tours every day during three weeks; and (5) the program gave me the option of doing an externship at a Chinese law firm.

My experience in Beijing, China was amazing. We had classes every morning and tours every afternoon. The class contained students from several other countries and law schools which made the learning experience even richer. During class, we discussed the main differences between American law and Chinese law. The professors were very qualified and open to questions, making it a healthy learning environment. Professor Lynch and Professor Randolph were always present during classes and tours. In addition, Nancy supported us, instructed us, and assisted us with any problem we had. China is a country like no other that I have visited. The Chinese culture is very different and it was a life learning experience to be part of the UMKC Summer Abroad program. I recommend it to everyone I know. I did not find any other school which takes students to so many tours and at the same time educates them on several areas of law: Property Law, Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, among others. Furthermore, this program impacted my academic and personal life and will continue to influence my future career since China has a love / hate relationship with the United States and is part of major international negotiations. Having this experience will definitely elevate my position in the job market.

Acacia Barros, St. Thomas University School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2012


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The program is intensive and comprehensive, the course work is extremely interesting and relevant in the wake of China’s emerging world dominance. The instructors and the university are great. The Organization is phenomenal as there is some sort of cultural activity that is planned every day of the trip where major historic sights are all scheduled to be visited by the students. I felt that what I saw and did in 3 weeks was a great accomplishment that would have taken me much longer to do had I gone on my own, the compact nature of the course is a great way to explore and learn many things in a relatively short period, I highly recommend this summer course.

Aziz Al-Alami, University of Louisville - Brandies School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2012


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When I first started law school, I figured I would attend the Ireland program because I really wasn’t interested in China, and I figured all the cool kids go to Ireland. Then I realized that the China program would provide the credits I needed, is a fraction of the cost, and would be an adventure unlike the familiar type of escapades I would encounter in Ireland. What was really most important to me, however, was an opportunity to familiarize myself with the legal and political system of a country that makes up 1/5 of the world’s population. By going to school at China’s highest rated university and attending nearly all of UMKC’s sightseeing tours, China is no longer a strange land in a galaxy far, far away. Rather, it has become a much more familiar culture with a people for whom I’ve acquired an appreciation and a fondness. Lastly, I should mention that it’s an opportunity to meet law students from all over the US (and the world) who are in the same boat, are just as confused by the street signs, and want to meet other law students. What I mean is, the program is a lot of fun – it’s A LOT of fun.

Alec Locascio, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2012


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It is impossible to distill the China summer semester program into distinct parts. You’re learning the culture, the law and building the skillset necessary to live on your own in China simultaneously. The semester was a transformative experience. I highly recommend it to anyone with an international law focus or anyone who feels the urge to see the world outside of the United States.

The Takeaways: Most importantly it was an education in the true extent of globalization and how essential acclimation to globalization really is for new lawyers. My semester in China taught me that to really heft my share of our generation’s burden I must do more than learn another Romance language and familiarize myself with European practices. Immersing yourself in China changes your worldview dramatically. This is the most valuable part of my China semester.

Oh, and I left with an entire suitcase full of neat Chinese swag. Really, some of the niftiest things you’ve ever seen. Good stuff.

The Experience: As for a description, words can only do so much. Living in a city with 22 million other humans can’t be easily put on paper. Imagine never being lonely and being able to find food/drink/shopping at 3 in the morning. Some days the smog is so thick you can’t see the next block, other days you can see the mountains that form the rim of the basin Beijing sits in. The supervisors tell you to not eat street food, but they’re lying. It’s delicious. There is some sort of black magic involved in making it so delicious, I believe.

Taxi drivers are horrible to everyone equally; don’t take offense if they don’t pick you up.

Bob Reynolds, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2012


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I really enjoyed the Beida program and I feel very privileged to have met Professor Randolph. I learned so much, and as I expand my business interests in China I have found it very helpful.

James Wu, St. John’s University School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2012


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The greatest socio-cultural / academic and shopping exchange I have ever been to.

Amadu Wiltshire, Charlotte School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2012


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I would have to recommend UMKC’s China Summer abroad program. After deciding to go to China, I literally researched every China study abroad program offered by American universities. The main reason I chose the UMKC program was the opportunity for work experience that UMKC's program offered. As a student in today’s economy, simply taking classes during the summer was not enough for me to feel as though I was remaining competitive with my peers. What’s more, when the UMKC staff found out about my career interests, they used their unique connections to place me in a firm tailored to my areas of professional interest. I am truly grateful for that, as work experience in China truly helps a résumé stand out in today’s job market.

Another great aspect of the UMKC program is the thorough cultural immersion. It is difficult to define how enriching living and studying in a country as different as China can be. Almost every day there were structured cultural activities, which was great as you did not have to worry about transportation or seeing all the major sights. At the same time, these were flexible in allowing you and some friends to go off and grab a Tsing Tao before heading back to campus.

Last but not least, the education was top notch. UMKC brings in speakers on different subjects who are experts in their field. Learning about different areas of the law helped give me interesting insights into Chinese culture that I would not otherwise have gleaned. Additionally, the speakers are open to speaking frankly about the areas of tension in U.S.- Sino relations. I don’t think I will ever forget the lectures given by the Communist Party members or the comments made by the Supreme Court of China judges. As I am sure you can see, I would recommend UMKC’s summer abroad in China program to anyone with an interest in living, working, and studying in China.

Christopher Grobbel, University of Florida Levin College of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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Spending my summer in China as part of the UMKC study abroad program was one of the most fun and rewarding experiences of my life. Not only was I given an amazing chance to experience a fascinating culture, I was also given a chance to further my law career and enhance my resume. During the program I was able to learn from some of the most renowned professors in all of China and put what I learned to practical use during my externship at a prestigious international law firm.

Putting aside all of the great benefits the program has to offer in regard to educational purposes, the program also offered a lot to do outside of the classroom. Every day the program offered a different outing, such as going to the Great Wall and visiting the Forbidden City. These outings gave me a chance to see and experience things that I never thought I would get a chance to do in my lifetime. And if you are more interested in the nightlife aspects of the various summer programs that are being offered, I guarantee that China’s night life will top them all while also being very kind on your wallet.

Christopher Kline, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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If I could pick one experience to be a part of again during law school it would be to go on the China trip. I can say in all honesty and sincerity that UMKC’s China Study Abroad is the single most enriching academic experience I’ve had the privilege of attending.

If you miss this trip, you’ll never have the opportunity to attend Peking University, which is not quite the equivalent of going to Harvard in the U.S. -- it’s more akin to being an astronaut to the citizens in China. You’ll never have access to spar with senior Communist Party members who will be willing (for the most part) to be candid with westerners, nor will you ever have the opportunity to speak with justices from China’s Supreme Court -- think about this, when was the last time you were inside the U.S. Supreme Court, let alone had the opportunity to meet/question its judges?

If you fail to take advantage of this opportunity, while you may still go to China at some point in your life -- probably to see the Great Wall-- you’ll have missed out on the experience of a lifetime to participate in the premier Law School study abroad program to China, UMKC’s very own, which will not only show you the Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, etc., but this program will provide the background and offer you the tools to understand one of the hottest topics in international politics and law -- the rise of China.

Matt Gass, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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Still looking for something to do this summer? Go to China! Seriously! I went to China [in 2011], and had an amazing experience. I enjoyed learning about the civil law system, and getting cheap summer credits. The program does a great job of exposing you to the culture and day to day life of Chinese people. I enjoyed exploring Beijing, Shanghai, and Xi’an on my own and with my classmates. I also participated in the internship program. I worked with a women’s rights group and law firm in Beijing. I know that some rumors have been circulating that you have to have summer work experience, and that the China program doesn’t cut it. This couldn’t be further from the truth. My China trip stands out on my résumé and sets me apart from other candidates. When interviewers ask me about it, I am able to tell them about all of the positive and unique skills that learning and working in China taught me - skills such as communication, flexibility, and patience. If you have any questions about the program please contact me!

Michelle Cocayne, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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Going on the study abroad trip to China was an amazing experience. First off, I received 5 hours of credit; I would have paid the same amount to take 5 credit hours at UMKC and I got to go to Beijing. We were able to study at one of the most preeminent schools in the world with highly esteemed faculty.

Beijing is an incredible city. It is the cultural center of China and it is very rich in history. There is so much to do, it’s impossible to be bored. The cultural and historical trips are great, and the bars/clubs are awesome. All the tours are organized for you and you always have plenty of support from the student assistants with things like translation, directions, or advice on what to do. You have plenty of free time to do things on your own. And it’s easy to get around by subway or taxi.

It really is a great program and a great experience. I would recommend it. It was an amazing trip!

Jason Kumar, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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My experience with the China study aboard program was very rewarding and one of the best decisions I have made in my law school career. The ability to be immersed in a culture completely different than our own is a priceless experience in itself. The opportunity to learn about the law of that culture and see the differences and similarities to our own legal system is not only informative but can change the way you view the world.

The cultural activities outside of the classroom are by far the best part of the program. Seeing some of the most famous historical sites in the world is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity. I walked up and down the Great Wall of China and even took a toboggan down to the bottom! We also visited the Temple of Heaven, Forbidden City, and the Summer Palace; these are beautiful and rich cultural sites with an amazing history. There are open weekends that allow you to travel outside of the Beijing area and see even more of China. I took one free weekend to go to Xi’an and see the Terra Cotta Warriors, which are to be considered one of the marvels of the world.

Going on an exchange program that has students from other law schools beside just UMKC allows you to make connections and friends from all over the U.S. and Canada. I keep in regular touch with many of the friends I made over the summer in China. This program is a great networking opportunity as well and fantastic experience. It will be beneficial in getting jobs the following summer and after law school. In an increasing global workplace employers look for employees who are willing to travel and are knowledgeable about other cultures. Plus, it an easy way to open up an interview; I have been asked about my experience in China at all of my interviews.

The externship is also a very beneficial part of the program allowing you to gain some real world experience working in an international law setting. I would strongly encourage anyone to go on the China study aboard program and take advantage of the great cultural opportunities as well as the educational and practical benefits of the program.

Oakley Coleman, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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I would highly recommend participating in the UMKC-Peking University study abroad program. I enrolled in the course in the Summer of 2011 and the experience was valuable both as an introduction to Chinese legal systems and as an opportunity to experience a different culture. The course was great in that it touched on all aspects of the law - from Chinese Criminal Procedure to Intellectual Property Rights. And while I enjoyed my studies, I enjoyed touring the exciting city of Beijing even more! I had the opportunity to visit the city of Xi’an one weekend with a Chinese student I met. She was kind enough to act as a translator for me and a few other students as we visited the Terra Cotta Warriors and rode bikes on top of the Xi’an City Walls. I still exchange emails with her regularly as well as with most of the other students who were enrolled in the course. Some of my best law school memories occurred on my Beijing trip, including visiting the Great Wall of China, trying some delicious Peking Duck and even learning a little Mandarin to impress my friends and family with.

Jenna Bever, University of Alberta Faculty of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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To be honest, China hits above its weight for a summer gig on the ol’ CV; sounds exotic to a lot of people. It was a great 1L summer move for me, though certainly not without its challenges. China is always the first thing people ask about on my CV.

Nicholas Lebo, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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We stayed at a hotel in the “Global Village” of Peking University. The village is “westernized” for the University’s international visitors. It’s a westernized hotel and pleasant. I shared the room with one roommate and the toilets were western which is key. We had our own bathroom and internet access. No complaints really. Tea soaked hard-boiled eggs with pickled stuff and a cup of coffee was my standard breakfast for the 3 weeks.

The program has a bunch of trips incorporated into it that hits a lot of the major points. The allocated times given can be awful short though so we’d stay at the place and let the bus go without us to fully explore. My favorite visit was to Beihai Park for sure and the trip to Xi’an was an experience. J

Being introduced to Chinese culture and its history was my favorite aspect of the trip. I really didn’t know much before I went on the trip. I am glad my first time to Asia was in a classroom experience where I learned about some of the history involved. It made the experience for me even if some of the material was dry.

Advice for future students: Don’t pack jeans - it’s too hot. Pack fabrics that flow. Again, it’s hot so pack lots of shorts, skirts, and sandals, but the classroom is insanely COLD. Get a suit made - I didn’t but wish I had now. It seemed like too much of a time commitment then. Get your gifts as you see them, getting back to a particular place is time consuming and can cut into other excursions. Buy pearls with Nancy. J Go to the Symphony or Opera. Plan your free weekend ASAP and bring a Chinese law student along! Make some time to study for the exam; it’s harder than everyone says it is. Be ready for some HUGE jetlag on the return. It was painful. I started my summer internship two days after returning home; I don’t recommend doing that.

Melissa Thaisz, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2011


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I was a participant in the China Summer Law Program the summer after my first year of law school. I love to travel and going to Asia was definitely on my bucket list so I was very excited that my law school had this program. The unique aspect of this program is that not only is the “studying” aspect emphasized by the introduction of Chinese Law courses, but also the “social” aspect of studying abroad. I was able to see things that many only see on television. Including excursions like climbing the Great Wall, walking around Tiananmen Square, visiting the site of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and the Mao Zedong mausoleum. If I had to sum up my experience in the program in one word it would be—AMAZING! I would highly recommend it to any student wanting to expand their worldview by studying abroad.

Akayla J. Jones, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2010


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Fellow Students,

I wanted to write a quick plug to all those interested in the China Summer Study Program at Peking University. This program is honestly one of the most fun, action-packed, educational opportunities I have ever taken part in. If you have never traveled in Asia now is the time to do it! The economy is dynamic, the law is developing, and the beer is cheaper than the water (also possibly cleaner). Here are a few of my own reasons for participating:

(1) Peking University is the Harvard of China; upon successful completion you receive certification in Chinese Law;

(2) International Law Experience at Top Tier Firms (we offer it) piques the interest of recruiters almost without fail;

(3) Missouri = Center of US-China Trade in future (see website below)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Midwest-China_Hub_Commission

(4) US/MO firms are rushing into China. Anyone heard of these guys? (see website below)
http://www.armstrongteasdale.com/

(5) [Missouri] Governor Jay Nixon inked a deal in Shanghai last year for over $4 billion in direct trade, lawyers in tow;

(6) Oh yeah, China is awesome - Great Wall, Terracotta Soldiers, Pandas, Fortune Cookies, etc.

Bobby Afshar, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2010


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I would encourage all law students to study abroad during their time at UMKC. My experience in China was hands-down, my favorite memory of the past 3 years. The program allowed me to travel to a country filled with culture and truly experience the beauty and power of China. Even more, we were afforded the opportunity to surround ourselves with some of the greatest legal minds in China and were thoroughly taught the basics of Chinese law. The law firm visits gave me a valuable understanding of what it means to practice international law and re-ignited an already burning flame of working in the international realm. Going to China with UMKC was an amazing experience that I hope many other law students will have the pleasure of experiencing.

Brittany Coleman, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2010


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The China Study Abroad program was one of the best law school experiences in my three years at UMKC! I not only had a blast enjoying the daily cultural field trips, I more thoroughly understood the American common law legal system by learning about a civil law system. It also is a great addition to my résumé and conversation topic in interviews. The best aspect of it, however, was the cost: it was affordable and I got 5 credit hours in three weeks!

Sadia Aslam, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2010


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The China Summer Law Program proved to be one of the highlights of my time in law school. It is right up there in the top 5 experiences of my life. The experience exceeded my expectations and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the program.

The first half of my trip at Peking University consisted of lectures by a variety of Chinese professors and visiting the enormous amount of historic sites located in and around the city. Many of us also explored the lively nightlife close to the university. I have some great stories; I better keep them to myself though.

After the Peking University classes ended, I started my externship. It was wonderful to get some practical experience. The timing of the externship coincides with the Dragon Boat Festival. Several of us took a trip to Inner Mongolia to spend the weekend in a village shooting off fireworks and riding around on ATVs. Good times.

My job search has even benefited by the trip to China. On every interview, once the interviewer sees the externship, I always end up in a long discussion about the trip. It breaks the ice and allows for a little looser atmosphere.

Everything isn’t perfect. There is pollution and some of the food requires an adventuresome spirit but I found the trip to China an overwhelmingly positive experience. With China becoming a powerful influence on the United States, most law students could benefit from understanding a bit about their culture and laws.

Mark Forshee, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2010


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My UMKC China Summer Law Study trip was one of the highlights of my time in law school. The academic portion of the trip was a horizon broadening experience interacting with the Chinese legal system. Even though I do not advise clients on any aspect of Chinese law as part of my practice, the experience taught me a different perspective from which to view the social and civil function of US law. The trip ultimately improved my understanding of the law that I practice every day by teaching me the basis of an entirely different legal system.

The opportunity for cultural excursions were significant, well thought out and enhanced the overall experience. They were worth taking advantage of. Additionally, the total cost for me, including all trip related expenses, was the same as taking the equivalent number of credits from Lewis and Clark. For the same price, I got a great experience in addition to the academic credit.

Troy Sexton, Lewis & Clark Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2009


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I attended the China Summer program the summer after my first year of law school in 2009. I was very pleased with how organized and well planned the trip was and how accommodating they were with me bringing my (non-law student) partner. For the price, it’s definitely worth the investment, and the timing was perfect as I was still able to make it back for a summer internship in DC. I would highly recommend this program for anyone interested in studying abroad in law school.

Evan Mascagni, UDC David A. Clarke School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2009


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The UMKC China Summer Program is going to be the same as you would expect: ADVENTUROUS, MIND-BLOWING, AND EDUCATIONAL.

I participated in this program at the end of my first year in law school, in 2009. Just as I had anticipated, the program turned out to be extremely fun, educational, and I got to earn credits towards my J.D. degree.

In addition to the fulfillment of my fascination of the long Chinese history and culture, I was provided an amazing opportunity interning in a prestige IP law firm. It was a truly EYE-OPENING and REWARDING experience. I earned a great recommendation and went back for another internship the following summer with the same boutique firm. If not for the UMKC China Summer Program, my law school experience would not be as memorable.

Jeff Chang, Wayne State University Law School
China Summer Law Program Participant 2009


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The China Study abroad program was an incredibly useful and fun experience. At a fraction of the cost of other study abroad programs, the cultural and educational value is rivaled by none. Whether it was lectures by professors high in government, museums and sightseeing, or interactions with business leaders, every day offered something new.

Jonathan Lowrey, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2009


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The UMKC China program was one of the greatest experiences of my life. I made lifelong friends during the program’s three weeks. The program itself gives you unprecedented access to the Chinese court system - a system normally closed off to foreigners. Your studies take place at the most prestigious Chinese University, Peking University. Interestingly, Chairman Mao was a librarian at that institution. Even in Chinese legal circles this program is viewed as the most prestigious. Most importantly this experience gave me a different perspective on life and the law.

Tyler A. Knott, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2009


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Attending the UMKC Beijing Summer Program was one of the most exciting and life changing experiences. Not only was I able to explore and observe the Chinese culture, but I was also able to learn Chinese Law. Peking University and its students were extremely inviting and friendly. They really helped make the experience memorable. The best part was getting the opportunity to climb the Great Wall and having McDonalds delivered to our hotel! Going to Beijing will be an experience that you will not want to miss.

Sophia Washington, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2009


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I attended the China Law Summer program through UMKC in 2007 and stayed through the summer to work as an extern in Shanghai. I made the most of the entire experience by aggressively exploring the culture on both a business and personal level during the program and externship, and by connecting with dozens of global professional along the way. We traveled extensively, learned as much as we could, partied hard, and created memories that will for certain last the duration of our lifetimes. The program is designed to have a balance that allows for extensive travel and plenty of free time, and is an excellent opportunity to learn about a very old culture that is rapidly changing. If you want to do things you would never do, say things you would never say, eat things you would never eat and learn things you never thought you would, then this program will suit you aptly. Seldom are we presented with what I refer to as “lifetime opportunities”; this is one of them.

Adam C. Maxwell, UMKC School of Law
China Summer Law Program Participant 2007