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Brazil – U.S. Legal Education Exchange Program (LEEP)

Posted by William Byrnes on July 30, 2011

Brazil-U.S. Legal Education Exchange Program (LEEP)


On Thursday, July 28, the 72 Brazilian lawyers who studied at Thomas Jefferson School of Law for the month said “adeus” to the law school and to each other in a closing ceremony in the Earl B. Gilliam Moot Court Room.

“It’s the end of a journey but it’s the beginning of a new journey,” said Carla McEwen, the director of the Brazilian exchange program at TJSL. “

“We are privileged to have been able to accommodate you for the past month,” William Byrnes, Associate Dean for Distance Learning, told the lawyers, who were here to study the U.S. legal system as well as learn something about American culture. “We hope we have created lasting relationships between the United States and Brazil.”

The program is formally called the Brazil – U.S. Legal Education Exchange Program (LEEP), and this was its first year of operation. Next year, Thomas Jefferson students will be going to Brazil to study and more Brazilian lawyers will be coming to San Diego.

“I am very, very glad I participated in the program,” said Barbara Gimenez, one of the participants. “I highly recommend it to my colleagues in Brazil.”

“It was a good overview of the U.S. legal system,” according to Julia Cadete, another participant. “The course fulfilled its goals.”

Luiz Fabricio said it was an enlightening experience for him. “I not only found out about the U.S. legal system, but I got to know the lovely San Diego and its many wonders.”

“We were learning every moment we were here,” said Franciann Araujo, “even when we were not in the classroom. It wasn’t just a legal exchange, but a cultural exchange as well.”

Carla McEwen was happy the students benefitted from the program, adding “we did benefit greatly too.” She is “very sad to see them go,” but has a sense of accomplishment that the exchange program went so well. “We fulfilled our mission.”

Members of the Attorney General Union (AGU), Central Bank, SUSEP (Seguros), and members of the Sao Paolo Bar may contact William Byrnes at wbyrnes@tjsl.edu or Carla McEwen (mcewenc@tjsl.edu) for more information for sessions in November 2011 (Central Bank only), January 2012 (all government) and next July 2012.

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