A World of Academic Options
Whatever the topic—international business transactions, capital markets, banking, terrorism, climate change, trade, human rights, technology, crime, antitrust, refugees, nonprofit and intergovernmental organizations—international and comparative law at Stanford prepares students for the countless roles law and lawyers play in a changing international arena.
Stanford Law offers an innovative curriculum that encompasses law, business, and policy studies while immersing students in the theory and practice of international and comparative law. Taking advantage of world-class sister schools and departments, the Stanford Program in International and Comparative Law is highly interdisciplinary. Classes are often taught by or with faculty from other schools, and many members of the law faculty hold joint appointments at other Stanford schools or entities, such as the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies.
Stanford offers students incredible flexibility to customize a course of study or to focus on a particular area of international or comparative law. Joint degrees (most of which can be completed in three years) are available in International Policy Studies and in area studies that focus on particular regions of the world; students may also create their own joint degrees. Relationships with other Stanford schools and departments make it easy to take classes outside the law school, from the Global Politics of Human Rights to International Financial Markets and Monetary Institutions to First-Year French. Students can also take internationally focused “teamwork” classes with students from across campus, taught by law professors and their counterparts at other Stanford schools and departments, thus sharpening the collaborative skills required to address the difficult global challenges we face.
Elite attorneys and future law professors from around the world have the opportunity to expand their legal education at Stanford by pursuing specialized advanced degrees. Three Master of Laws (LLM) programs and the Stanford Program in International Legal Studies (SPILS) are open to select students and professionals who earned their primary law degree outside the United States.
Stanford Law opens a world of opportunities to work in international law and policy. Through the externship program, I earned full academic credit while working in the Office of the President of the International Criminal Court in The Hague. A concurrent long-distance tutorial with one of the law school’s international law professors enriched the experience. After leaving The Hague, I spent the summer in the Office of the Legal Adviser at the U.S. Department of State, which allowed me to work on international legal issues on this side of the ocean. I’ve since accepted an offer to return to the State Department to advise on international legal issues after graduation.
Max Rettig '10