Today I’m pleased to welcome Anila Scott-Monkhouse, who teaches English as a foreign language at the University of Parma in Italy, and Legal English in the EFLIT programme.
Over to you, Anila!
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EFLIT (English for Law and International Transactions) is a postgraduate training project aimed at offering professionals and graduates in the fields of Law, Business and Economics, and Political Sciences a course combining a linguistic focus (i.e. Legal and Business English) and a content focus (i.e. Law in English) in order to improve both their communication and professional skills, and expand their knowledge in foreign legal practice through interactive and experiential learning.
Each year it also offers study visits to the Temple University Beasley School of Law in Philadelphia (USA) in April, and to Worcester College in Oxford (UK) in September within the “International Legal Practice” programme by ECCLE (European Centre for Continuing Legal Education).
This year EFLIT introduced a three-day study visit to London (29 October – 2 November 2014) to experience ‘Legal London’ over the long Halloween weekend.
The actual study visit started on Thursday 30 October with a mini-lecture by Tim Wood, journalist and expert in tours of the London courts, who provided a brief explanation of the courts and jury trials in England as an introduction to the observation of trials at the Old Bailey, London’s Central Criminal Court. Participants then sat in the public galleries to observe several trials, with cases ranging from misconduct to sexual harassment, murder and terrorism, and the different stages of a trial (e.g. preliminary hearing, cross-examination, concluding statements, etc.).
In the afternoon participants visited Withers Law Firm and were welcomed by partner Filippo Noseda and other solicitors specialising in different fields related to international transactions (Real Estate, Wealth Planning, Dispute Resolution, etc.), with a focus on the relationships which the firm has with Italy. A small reception at the end gave participants a chance to network with the lawyers and perhaps lay the basis for future collaborations.
Friday 31 October began with a visit to the Inner Temple, where the Sub-Treasurer Patrick Maddams and other barristers welcomed the participants with a talk on the English legal system, the Inns of Court and becoming a barrister.
This was followed by a visit to the Temple Church with the guide of the Master of the Temple, Reverend Robin Griffith-Jones, who explained the role this church played in the sealing of the Magna Carta. After a tasty lunch offered by the Inner Temple, the afternoon was devoted to a guided tour of the Supreme Court of Justice and meeting the Chief Executive Jenny Rowe.
Saturday 1 November was dedicated to a tour of the Houses of Parliament, which took participants into the heart of the law-making process in England.
The study visit also allowed plenty of time for social events and an afternoon for shopping and/or sightseeing.
Participants gave very positive feedback on the experience, and the London study visit is very likely to become another of EFLIT’s classic favourites. Anyone involved in international relationships and transactions is welcome: lawyers, notaries, judges, prosecutors, in-house counsel, trainees, paralegals, chartered accountants, tax advisors, financial consultants, academics, PhD and undergraduate students.
The aim is to expand horizons and offer a dynamic environment for participants of any nationality to interact with professionals from a range of backgrounds in order to exchange ideas, share experiences, establish working relationships, possibly create business opportunities, and for professional networking in general.
For more information, see here.
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Regarding disclosure, I have no commercial relationship with the EFLIT project, and the above guest post is a documentary report drafted by its author.