Decision Made - Next Stop, CUHK!

Decision Made - Next Stop, CUHK!

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Hi again! A BIG thank you to all who read my first post and shared some thoughts on which university to choose for a JD programme. Your comments were much appreciated and really helped me get through the decision-making process more efficiently. So, after much thought and consideration on both personal and professional fronts, I have decided to pursue my JD studies at The Chinese University of Hong Kong!

The Chinese University of Hong Kong (or CUHK) is a reputed university worldwide with high placements as delivered by the QS and Times Higher Education Rankings. For example, it is currently part of the "Top 10 Universities" within Asia overall, with its Law School ranking in the "Top 20." With its state-of-the art facilities and faculty, CUHK is surely not an opportunity to miss out on. In fact, it is the first university I've come across to separate its Graduate Law Center from its main campus in Shatin, Hong Kong. In other words, instead of mixing its Graduate law students with the rest of the student body in Shatin, the university has them appear for classes in a wholly separate office-style campus in the Bank of America Tower in Central Hong Kong; the heart of the business hub! I believe this is a very clever technique to intellectually enrich the minds of future lawyers while they study the subject!

                                           

Hence, with the outset of my decision, I have completed all the formalities, registered for the JD programme and even got a conditional offer  for graduating with a First Class Honours and a 4.0 GPA in Accounting & Finance. Now that this degree is well-over, I am all set for selecting courses and starting this new adventure in law very very soon! I have to select courses such as "Principles of Constitutional Law", "The Legal System", and alike- courses that are very different from the typical "Corporate Finance" and "Advanced Accounting" I took in undergrad. Moreover, the teaching system in classes is very different from what I've experienced so far. For example, instead of regular 1-2 hour lectures that take place 2 times a week, I have to attend 3-hour seminars for each course every week. Some of these seminars take place in the late evenings, something that I am not used to since I mostly attended morning and afternoon lectures during my undergraduate studies.

On top of this, I'll have to complete a big dissertation in law in order to graduate with a JD. This is very different as well since I have only been writing essays and papers for my courses till now, not writing a piece that equals to a whole course!

Keeping all this in mind, one thing I have come to understand is that my study style for the JD will have to be very different from the one I undertook for my Accounting & Finance. This is because, unlike Accounting, the field of law is not a bunch of formulas and equations that must be memorized in order to debit and credit properly. The field of law is not limited to certain principles or case studies. Instead, the field of law is like the ocean, vast and endless. Maybe this is the reason why people often relate law to big, heavy books; simply because there is no stop to it. Laws are developing and changing every day, in every jurisdiction and in every case worldwide. Hence, as lawyers, we can never claim to know “everything” and rather strive to know the most we can in order to reach solutions.

Overall, even though I have not formally started my JD studies yet, this journey is already bringing many changes to my life. Some are exciting, some challenging, but that's what makes it interesting! Stay tuned for more details in the next blog!

Cheers,

Raveena

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Henry Wang's picture
Wed, 10/07/2013 - 21:50

Your posts are very intriguing if not very specific to yourself. You talk a lot about rankings, but that is really indicative of a "myself as a function of the system" mindset. It is inherently a very reactive mindset. I'd be much more interested in seeing what specific dragons / problems you would like to solve with your legal education vs. dragging a very personal decision onto the realms of this website

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Raveena_Mital's picture
Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:15

Thank you for your valuable comment and feedback. I completely understand your point. Actually since these were only the first two pots, I wanted to share a general introduction to the JD program, what it's like, its course structure and the like, just in case people from other disciplines are also interested in pursuing this as a Graduate program. The application of such a study and the contribution of business and law to the society will surely be addressed in the future posts.

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meher_1's picture
Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:33

A wonderful and fascinating post! Excited to read the rest of your journey!
I have some questions actually regarding the JD Program. I am keen on pursuing it as well but I am an English Honours Graduate. So, how will the JD assimilate the different people who do not possess a degree in law and come from different backgrounds? Also, can I specialize in an area of law in the JD and then use that for my career life as well?

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Raveena_Mital's picture
Thu, 11/07/2013 - 12:56

Thank you for your valuable comment and feedback Meher, and I will surely keep updating my journey in the blog! Yes, you surely can pursue the JD Program after your English Honours Degree. In fact, the major attraction of this program is that it is built for graduates who have not studied law in their undergraduate years and thus have background from all fields except the legal one. Hence the JD aims to collaborate the different minds and knowledge of such people and help them apply what they have learned in the legal framework. This is because all the different fields- whether it be business, engineering, arts and the like, have a connection with law since the rule of law must be followed when applying these concepts to society. Therefore, if you would like to learn the legal application of your studies as well and interact with people from diverse backgrounds in order to reach solutions, then I would highly encourage you to take the JD program too. Like I mentioned in my post, in the initial year of the JD, you would be required to take the compulsory introductory courses in law (such as Principles of Constitutional Law, Principles of Company Law, The Legal Framework and more). Then for the second year, you can choose to specialize in an area of law of your choosing (such as International Arbitration, Family Law, IPR etc.) and then choose your electives accordingly. So in this sense, this specialization can help you choose the line you want to take for your career. For example, if a business graduate like me wants to take the JD and finally become a corporate lawyers, then it would be beneficial for me to specialize in International Arbitration in my second year. In this way, I can combine both my degrees and choose a career path that calls for both. Hope this answers your questions and do let me know if you need more information!

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meher_1's picture
Mon, 15/07/2013 - 08:24

A Big Thanks for the detailed comment and feedback. I surely understand the JD Programme much better now and I am glad that us Arts people are able to take it as well. I will look up some law schools as well and will most probably consider taking it in Singapore or the US. Thanks again and I look forward for your next post!

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