Chicago Law Students Explore How They Can Apply Legal Training to Public Service on a Global Stage

Law Students Explore How They Can Apply Legal Training to Public Service on a Global Stage

Students from the University of Chicago Law School were selected to join their peers from 13 top law schools across the United States to explore the future of public and private international law at the tenth annual Salzburg Cutler Fellows Program.

The online program, spread across two weeks, (February 24 - March 12, 2022) saw top law students engage with prominent legal professionals, public servants, and leaders in the fields of international law and public service.

Students included Christopher Crum, Travis Gidado, Tori Keller and Miriam John. They were joined by faculty representatives, Aican Nguyen and Tom Ginsburg.

Speakers this year included John B. Bellinger III, former Legal Adviser to the US Department of State and National Security Council Pavel Baev, Research Professor at Peace Research Institute Oslo and Senior Non-Resident Fellow at Brookings Institution Svitlana Starosvit, former staffer at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine and Ministry of Justice of Ukraine.

The 13 law schools taking part in the program this year were Berkeley, Chicago, Columbia, Cornell, Duke, Harvard, Michigan, New York University, Northwestern, Penn, Stanford, Virginia and Yale.

The Cutler Fellows Program is always looking to respond to current world events, but this year’s opening event happened at a particularly crucial time in history, as the most “notable use of force that we have ever seen on the European continent since World War II” happened simultaneously. The opening keynote session> looked to cover the future of international law after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the future of the Western order and the future of Ukraine.

In addition, Fellows received individual critique on their student papers from faculty of the participating law schools, as well as further advice on how to seek publication in journals. This year’s papers covered diverse topics, ranging from cyberwarfare and space weapons, Black Lives Matter, gender-based violence and climate justice amongst many others.

In the program’s Knowledge Café, students discussed personal ambitions and potential career routes in international law with mentors from Covington & Burling LLP, the International Monetary Fund and New Markets Lab.

When asked about the program, one of the participating students, Travis Gidado said: “The Salzburg Cutler Fellowship writing workshops were touted as a unique opportunity to receive feedback on nascent legal scholarship from exceptional people, and they did not disappoint. During our afternoon session, my small group discussed a wide range of complicated legal and policy issues with remarkable deftness, clarity, and nuance. Incisive questions were asked and answered, resulting in deeper conversations about the role of international law in shaping an increasingly unstable global order. It was an honor to meet such dynamic scholars and students from all over the country, and I know the Fellowship has already established connections that will grow long after the formal program ends.”

At the end of this year’s program, Salzburg Global Seminar President Stephen L. Salyer spoke about what it means to be a Salzburg Global Fellow and the value it can bring to their lives. “I hope as you move forward in your careers that you will find those in this network to be valuable mentors and counterparts in helping you to shape a more just and sustainable world.”

Throughout the year, Salzburg Global Seminar also convenes current and rising leaders on topics such as:

  • Education and Work
  • Human and Planetary Health
  • Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy; and
  • Finance & Corporate Governance

As Cutler Fellows, students are part of the wider Salzburg Global Fellowship and can connect with Fellows from around the world, giving them access to a rich and varied network.

Read more at Salzburg Global Seminar