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2013 Student Application

Application Process

Students from participating schools will be selected through a centralized application process based on a personal statement addressing why they want to participate, their resume, and a virtual interview.   

Ideal Candidate

Students that thrive within the LawWithoutWalls experience possess: a creative and entrepreneurial spirit; the maturity to embrace the challenges of collaboration and cross-cultural teamwork; a willingness to boldly engage in community brainstorming; the ability to solve problems and think outside of the box; and demonstrated leadership qualities.

Credits and Registration

LawWithoutWalls is a new and innovative educational model that is offered across the globe at many different types of educational institutions.  Therefore, decisions about the registration process, the number of credits, and other requirements vary by school.  Some schools offer LawWithoutWalls as an independent study.  Others offer it as a course for credits.  For example, the U.S. participating law schools offer 3 credits.  Still others offer it as a seminar in fulfillment of a writing requirement.   Please email your school's Lead Faculty (see below) or visit your school's LawWithoutWalls information page to find out how LawWithoutWalls is offered at your school. 

Application Steps

1) Prepare the following two documents: 
a) Statement of Interest (2 pages or less), and
b) Resume  
2) Send one email (with a subject line of "LawWithoutWalls Application") with both of these documents attached to:  
b) the Lead Faculty at your school (as per the following):

Timing

Application documents must be received by the date provided by each school (please direct any questions to the Faculty Lead listed above). Applications are currently still being accepted for the following schools: Fordham Law School, Harvard Law School, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, Tel Aviv University Buchmann Faculty of Law, University of Sydney Law School, and Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. The application period has ended for all other schools. Selected students will be notified by the end of November.

Overview

LawWithoutWalls is a part-virtual, educational collaboratory at the University of Miami School of Law. It brings together a transdisciplinary group of people and institutions from around the world to engage on the burning issues facing the legal profession, collaboratively solve legal problems, and develop the skillsets needed to thrive in the new, global legal marketplace.  

Students will be welcomed into the LawWithoutWalls community, beginning with the in-person KickOff in Segovia, Spain in January 2013. Students are assigned a broad problem in legal practice or education, and through virtual dynamic teaming with Acadmic, Practitioner, Corporate, and Entrepreneur Mentors from multiple disciplines, will create a business idea to solve a specific problem within their topic. Students will then reunite with the entire community in April at the ConPosium in Miami, Florida to present their business idea to a panel of venture capitalist and attorney judges, and perhaps even secure funding to make their business concept a reality.

In addition to the KickOff and virtual dynamic teaming during the semester, students will actively participate in weekly Virtual Thought Leader Sessions. These interactive sessions include real-time video conversations with Thought Leaders from around the world, allowing the community to debate hot issues at the intersection of law, business, technology, and innovation. The sessions are fully synchronous and are broadcast live over the web across nineteen time zones. Using a computer and a webcam, students will interactively participate within a global think tank of lawyers, business professionals, academics, entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and technologists. 

LawWithoutWalls is a learn-by-participating model that breaks down the barriers between law and business, between attorney and client, between student and professor. It develops the broad and comprehensive skillset necessary to thrive in the ever-changing world of law and business. This includes presentation, communication, entrepreneurial, teamwork, global and cross-cultural, business planning, branding, technology, social media, business networking, self-awareness, work-life balance, innovative research, professionalism, ethics, and idea generation skills. 

Teams

Prior to the LawWithoutWalls KickOff, individuals will be grouped together to create balanced and complimentary Teams based on geographic and cultural diversity, experience, skill sets, and expressed interests. Each Team consists of: 

• Students

Each team is assigned three or four students.  The majority of students are pursuing a graduate degree in law (J.D. or LL.M.) or are in their final or penultimate year of an undergraduate degree program in law (LL.B.), while others are pursuing a graduate degree in business (MBA).

• 5 Mentors (an Academic Mentor, two Practitioner Mentors, a Corporate Mentor, and an Entrepreneur Mentor)

Each Team's Mentors help guide its topic research and development of the Project of Worth.  They provide critical feedback and commentary on the students' work quality and process.  They ask critical questions about the Project of Worth's viability and positioning and coach the team on the creativity and courage needed to develop an innovative business idea

As an additional resource, each Team has access to our group of Advisors that include Subject Experts, Venture Capitalists, and Alumni of LawWithoutWalls. 

Topics

Each Team is assigned a controversial or unsettled topic in legal education or practice. Each Team's ultimate goal is to develop a Project of Worth within this topic that they will present at the end of the semester at the ConPosium. The topics for LawWithoutWalls 2013 are:

  • The Law School Law Firm: Can and Should Law Schools be Legal Service Providers?
  • A School for General Counsels? How Should Prospective GCs Develop Their Skillset?
  • Discovery in the Cloud: Can a Reasonable Expectation of Privacy Survive the Age of Technology?
  • Law Firm Efficiency: Tomorrowland or Fantasyland?
  • Supermarket Law Firms: Honey, Can you Pick Up Some Ice Cream and an LL.C.?
  • Crunching Mega Data to Make Decisions: Risks and Rewards of Quantitative Legal Prediction
  • Crowd Source and Open Source Lawyering: Good Job or Flash Mob?
  • Cyber Justice: Using Technology to Provide Legal Services to Underserved Around the Globe
  • Not Lost in Translation: Delivering Legal Services Across Multiple Jurisdictions and Common/Civil Law Traditions
  • Doing Well and Doing Good: New Models for Pro Bono in Legal Education and Practice
  • Building a Better Mousetrap: Recreating and Redefining Successful Social Networking by Law Firms and Law Schools
  • The Increasing Importance of Corporate Compliance: More Jobs For Law Grads or Another Threat to Lawyers’ Monopoly?
  • The Death of the Cover Letter: Rethinking How to Find a Job and Build a Career
  • The New Face of Diversity:  Supporting Minority Attorneys in the Local and Global Legal Marketplace

Note: Although an applicant may express a topic preference in her or his Staement of Interest, topic assignments can not be guaranteed.

Collaboration

LawWithoutWalls is so much more than a course... it's a community, and one that has its own culture and spirit that invites collaboration. Not only will students share ideas with colleagues from around the world, they will also share their cultures, styles, values, and worldviews.  Working so intimately with people from other countries and cultures requires great maturity, honesty, patience, and empathy, and everyone will engage in open dialogue to maximize the opportunities offered by this global and inter-personal approach to learning. Students will need to work together with others who have very different ways of doing things, and over the course of the semester will likely learn more life lessons than legal lessons.

Communication is a foundational element of the LawWithoutWalls collaborative experience, and we will focus on the art and subtlety of excellent oral, written, and non-verbal (in-person and virtual) communication.  Teams will build trust and mutual respect as they attempt to actualize better versions of themselves and the legal world.

Expectations

Mandatory Participation

Given that LawWithoutWalls occurs over a very condensed time period, participation in every part of the syllabus is mandatory.  That means that in addition to working collaboratively on their Projects of Worth, students must attend the technology training sessions, KickOff, Virtual Thought Leader Sessions, Virtual Team Meetings with their Mentors, and ConPosium.  Students that cannot fully attend the KickOff and ConPosium will not be allowed to particiapte.

Work Load

This course is an intense experience in teamwork and communication. Because students work within culturally and professionally diverse teams and are challenged to create a Project of Worth, the work load can be great at times.  Moreover, the type of work is different than that assigned in traditional classes. Students create action plans to address real world problems in legal practice or education.  Thus, the ideal LawWithoutWalls student is one that appreciates challenges, embraces hard work, and isn't afraid of a learning curve.

Privacy 

Participating in LawWithoutWalls involves sharing one's audio and video during Virtual Thought Leader Sessions. When students register for the course, they will be required to sign a likeness release form authorizing Miami Law (the sponsor of LawWithoutWalls) to use their likeness to promote LawWithoutWalls and to further its educational mission.

Costs 

Costs for participating in LawWithoutWalls varies by instituion.  At some institutions, the costs for travel and lodging are covered in large part by the home intituion.  At other institutions, students are asked to contribute to covering those costs. And at others, students are required to find their own funding to attend the two in-person events.  Please ask your Lead Faculty how funding works at your school.

At the KickOff in Segovia and ConPosium in Miami, breakfast, lunch, and refreshments will be provided, but students are responsible for covering the costs of dinner and additional dining/entertainment along with other out of pocket costs like additional travel costs and expenses (transporation from the airport, transportation around town, etc). Regarding technology, to participate in LawWithoutWalls, each student must have access to a computer with a webcam and secure a strong and reliable internet connection (either through their school or at home), preferably a wired one.  

Schedule

LawWithoutWalls runs from January 2013 to April 2013 and is divided into 3 segments:

1) KickOff and Preparation Period

The LawWithoutWalls KickOff will be held at the IE Campus in Segovia on 19-20 January 2013. During this two-day in-person event, LawWithoutWalls participants get to know each other, interact in team building and idea generation exercises, sharpen presentation skills, and unpack the concept of a Project of Worth. Soon thereafter, students begin researching their assigned topics, attend technology training sessions, and meet virtually with their Teams to begin to get to know one another.

2) Virtual Thought Leader Sessions and Virtual Team Meetings

From 22 January through 12 April 2013, students meet weekly with their Mentors to work collaboratively on their Projects of Worth.

From 30 January through 27 March 2013, students participate in a Virtual Thought Leaders Session each week for 110 minutes. For those of us who embrace the true global nature of our working world and who strive to connect to all corners of it, convenience and ease for everyone involved is an impossibility. We have tried our best to find a weekly time that allows participation from individuals across 19 of the world's 24 time zones, and have accounted for Daylight Savings Time changes to produce the following 4 schedules: 

Schedule A: 30/31 January through 13/14 February 2013
Stanford: Wednesday 14:00 to 15:50
Fordham: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Harvard: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Indiana: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Miami: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Montréal: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50 
NYLS: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Wharton: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
UC Derecho: Wednesday 19:00 to 20:50 
São Paulo: Wednesday 20:00 to 21:50 
UCL: Wednesday 22:00 to 23:50  
IE: Wednesday 23:00 to Thursday 0:50 
St. Gallen: Wednesday 23:00 to Thursday 0:50 
Tel Aviv: Thursday 0:00 to 1:50 
NLS: Thursday 3:30 to 5:20 
STL: Thursday 6:00 to 7:50 
Sydney: Thursday 9:00 to 10:50

Schedule B: 20/21 February through 6/7 March 2013 (change from Schedule A is underlined)
Stanford: Wednesday 14:00 to 15:50
Fordham: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Harvard: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Indiana: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Miami: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Montréal: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50 
NYLS: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
Wharton: Wednesday 17:00 to 18:50
UC Derecho: Wednesday 19:00 to 20:50 
São Paulo: Wednesday 19:00 to 20:50 
UCL: Wednesday 22:00 to 23:50  
IE: Wednesday 23:00 to Thursday 0:50 
St. Gallen: Wednesday 23:00 to Thursday 0:50 
Tel Aviv: Thursday 0:00 to 1:50 
NLS: Thursday 3:30 to 5:20 
STL: Thursday 6:00 to 7:50 
Sydney: Thursday 9:00 to 10:50

Schedule C: 13/14 March 2013 to 27/28 March 2013 (changes from Schedule B are underlined)
Stanford: Wednesday 15:00 to 16:50
Fordham: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Harvard: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Indiana: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Miami: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Montréal: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50 
NYLS: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Wharton: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50

UC Derecho: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50 
São Paulo: Wednesday 19:00 to 20:50 
UCL: Wednesday 22:00 to 23:50  
IE: Wednesday 23:00 to Thursday 0:50 
St. Gallen: Wednesday 23:00 to Thursday 0:50 
Tel Aviv: Thursday 0:00 to 1:50 
NLS: Thursday 3:30 to 5:20 
STL: Thursday 6:00 to 7:50 
Sydney: Thursday 9:00 to 10:50

Schedule D (for Student Mock Presentations): 1 April 2013 to 5 April 2013 (change from Schedule C is underlined)
Stanford: Wednesday 15:00 to 16:50
Fordham: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Harvard: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Indiana: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Miami: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Montréal: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50 
NYLS: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
Wharton: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50
UC Derecho: Wednesday 18:00 to 19:50 
São Paulo: Wednesday 19:00 to 20:50 
UCL: Wednesday 23:00 to 24:50  
IE: Thursday 0:00 to 1:50
St. Gallen: Thursday 0:00 to 1:50 
Tel Aviv: Thursday 1:00 to 2:50
NLS: Thursday 3:30 to 5:20 
STL: Thursday 6:00 to 7:50 
Sydney: Thursday 9:00 to 10:50

3) ConPosium

The ConPosium will be held on 13-14 April 2013 at the University of Miami in Miami, Florida, U.S. During this two-day in-person event, students present their Projects of Worth alongside Thought Leaders and team Mentors to a diverse group of judges including venure capitalists. The ConPosium is a highly interactive, energetic event that brings together the LWOW community to celebrate our shared experience. 

Technology

LawWithoutWalls embraces technology. Though tech expertise isn't required to apply, a willingness to learn new technologies and utilize them in new and exciting ways is. Students must have constant, private access to a computer with a webcam and a strong and reliable (preferably wired) high-speed internet connection during all Virtual Team Meetings and Virtual Thought Leader Sessions (which sometimes occur during the very early morning or very late night).  Video teleconferencing is a major component of the experience and all students will be trained in Adobe Connect before the first Virtual Thought Leader Session.  We will also utilize an assortment of web-based apps like Skype, Google Drive, Google+, Twitter, and Facebook, and students will be challenged to learn how they work and how they can best be used to enhance the collaborative educational process. 

Assessment

Assessment in LawWithoutWalls is an integrated, collaborative process.  Students get and give continual feedback to and from the other members of their Team.  Additionally, students evaluate LawWithoutWalls, their team, and themselves at the end of the semester. Students who receive credits from their school will receive a grade to be given by their Faculty Lead in collaboration with Michele DeStefano and Michael Bossone.

Testimonials From Previous LawWithoutWalls Students

"LawWithoutWalls is unlike any other experience you will have during law school.  Its unique format and content will give you the opportunity to interact with students from across the world while exploring cutting-edge topics in the legal profession."   
     - Mike Rozensher, Harvard Law School
 
"LawWithoutWalls is a wonderful experience, it helped me overcome some weaknesses in my personality and think independently; in addition, it helped me learn how to become a succesful team player. The most precious thing that I got from LawWithoutWalls is a life-long friendship with my teammate."  
     - Wu Dan, Peking University School of Transnational Law
 
"LawWithoutWalls enabled my group to explore an area of the law that we had not previously encountered in law school. The experience of engaging in discourse across the globe with our phenomenal international partners and mentors was a thoroughly enjoyable and enriching experience (not to mention a great exercise in schedule coordination). In addition, the weekly virtual class discussions were excellent: topical and engaging, every class discussion was an opportunity for us to hear from and speak with leaders in both the legal sphere and the wider professional world. I would absolutely choose to participate in LawWithoutWalls again."  
     - Kyle Marshall, University of Miami School of Law
 
“LawWithoutWalls is a unique and invaluable opportunity to create an international network of peers, mentors, and friends at the beginning of your career.  This one-of-a-kind programme enables you to develop insight and opinion on a wide range of topics relevant to legal practice and education whilst developing key research and presentation skills that are fundamental to any future career.   LawWithoutWalls provides a rare opportunity to collaborate with experts and colleagues from around the world and I would strongly recommend it to anyone looking to pursue a career in law.”  
     - Anna Pope, University College London Faculty of Laws
 
"I loved that LawWithoutWalls paired us with amazing students, world famous professors, and provided access to some of the best contacts in the legal profession to help shape our project. I made many close friends throughout the course, but also connected with people who continue to serve as mentors. Post-course I met with LawWithoutWalls practitioners to discuss my project, career path, and life in general. Working with a group who was excited about the things that interested me provided such a dynamic platform for problem solving. Additionally, LawWithoutWalls helped to sharpen the following skills: working as an integral part of a team, communication across a diverse range of professions, countries and media, and research/interviewing skills."  
     - Christy Garg, New York Law School
 
"LawWithoutWalls was the most innovative learning experience I had in law school. It provided a unique opportunity to think creatively about law and the legal profession and to apply the legal analysis skills we learn in law school to a real world problem--something we are expected to do in our profession but for which legal education rarely prepares us. LawWithoutWalls also compelled me to take interest in and ownership of the legal profession in a new and more meaningful way; it opened my eyes to the challenges that we face as law students and lawyers in a dynamic, globalizing world."  
     - Mari Byrne, Fordham Law School