Seattle U Law recognized as top school for international law

February 9, 2023
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Seattle University School of Law earned an “A” grade in international law from National Jurist’s preLaw magazine, as reported in the Winter 2023 issue.

“Our law school has long been a powerhouse in international law, especially in the area of human rights, and I’m so pleased to see this recognition of our leadership,” said Dean Anthony E. Varona. “We’re building even stronger connections across the world, with our new India Center for Law and Justice, our new SJD Program, educational exchange programs, and a new focus on global technology, AI, and commerce.”

Seattle U Law offers many courses and seminars and multiple clinics, externships, and student organizations focusing on international law, and faculty have widely published influential scholarship in the areas of human rights, global trade, religious liberty, and transitional justice.

Also, faculty in the law school’s renowned Legal Writing Program, especially Professor Emerita Laurel Currie Oates and Associate Professor Mimi Samuel, have led writing workshops across the world — namely Afghanistan, Botswana, China, Ethiopia, India, Liberia, South Africa, and Uganda — to help foreign lawyers develop their global writing and communication skills.

“The groundwork for this newest accolade has been laid by numerous esteemed colleagues who are renowned for their scholarship in international, comparative, and human rights law,” said Associate Professor Sital Kalantry. “As the inaugural associate dean for international and graduate programs, I hope to expand Seattle University School of Law's footprint even more widely globally.”

International law faculty include:

Professor Emerita Janet Ainsworth, who taught for more than three decades at the law school, was also research professor in the Research Center for Legal Translation, China University of Political Science and Law in Beijing. She has sat on the editorial boards of several international journals and served co-editor of the Oxford University Press series, Studies on Language and the Law.

Professor Thomas Antkowiak directs the International Human Rights Clinic and is a prolific author of international scholarship. He and his students have brought matters before the Inter-American Commission and Court of Human Rights, the African Commission and Court of Human and Peoples' Rights, UN human rights institutions, and foreign jurisdictions.

Professor Mark Chinen writes on various aspects of international law, particularly international governance, theology and international law, and the relationship between domestic and international law.  

Professor Margaret Chon, the Donald and Lynda Horowitz Endowed Chair for the Pursuit of Justice, whose scholarship on intellectual property has explored the relationship between global intellectual property governance and sustainable development.

Associate Professor Gillian Dutton, director of the Externship Program, advises the law school’s International Refugee Assistance Program and the International Law Society, is an expert in cross-cultural communication and pedagogy, and leads an innovative transitional justice class with Morocco.

Professor Won Kidane teaches and writes in the areas of international arbitration, transnational litigation, international and comparative law, international investment law, and public international law.

Associate Professor Sital Kalantry directs the India Center for Law and Justice, which she founded originally at Cornell University. Her teaching and scholarship examines global comparative law and she has litigation experience in international and foreign court.

Professor Tayyab Mahmud has published extensively in the areas of comparative constitutional law, human rights, international law, legal history, and legal theory.

Professor Russell Powell previously served as Seattle University's associate provost for global engagement. His main area of research is comparative religious jurisprudence. Early in his career, he was a foreign service officer with the U.S. State Department.

Professor Ronald Slye teaches, writes, and consults in the areas of public international law, international criminal law, transitional justice, and international human rights law. He was chosen by Kofi Annan to be one of three international Commissioners for the Kenyan Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission from 2009 to 2013.

Finally, Dean Varona, who is multilingual and a native of Cuba, has lectured around the world (in several languages); served as a delegate to the International Association of Law Schools and as an academic observer at the United Nations Commission Against Torture in Geneva, Switzerland; is a Profesor Honorario at La Universidad de San Martín de Porres in Lima, Peru; and most recently accompanied Seattle University President Eduardo Peñalver on a multi-city academic diplomacy tour of India, during which they signed memoranda of understanding with several prominent Indian universities.

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