CityU signs agreements with Oxford and mainland institutions to train professionals

Sharon Ng

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The School of Law of City University of Hong Kong (CityU) has signed collaborative agreements with University College, Oxford, UK, and the Supreme People’s Court of PRC and National Judges College, to provide legal education and training to both local law students and mainland judges. The agreements reflect the efforts of CityU to provide globalised education through cooperation with top institutions.

CityU’s School of Law signed an agreement with University College, Oxford, UK under the Global Legal Education and Awareness Programme (G-LEAP) on 27 February.

Under the latest agreement, CityU law students will be able to spend a month studying at the University College, Oxford. Students who finish the programme will be eligible for a credit transfer to an equivalent course being taught at the CityU School of Law. This programme will commence in June 2009 and is expected to involve 40 CityU law students. The School is seeking further collaborative opportunities with other overseas universities.

The School of Law also finalised two agreements with the Supreme People’s Court and National Judges College in Beijing on 29 February, to provide advanced legal training for mainland judges. In one of the collaborations, the School will design several customised Master’s degree courses for as many as 30 judges, who will be enrolled in courses at prestigious institutions in the United States and United Kingdom, such as University College, Oxford for one month.

This is the first time the Supreme People’s Court and National Judges College have collaborated with an academic institution outside the mainland to provide training for mainland judges.

In addition, the School signed another agreement for “Advanced legal training for mainland senior judges”, with a view to providing judiciary training. The one-month course will be held once or twice a year, with 30 to 35 senior judges selected and recommended by the National Judges College participating in the course in Hong Kong.

“China’s judges are forging ahead in terms of professionalism and internationalisation,” said CityU Acting President Professor Richard Ho Yan-ki. “With globalisation in tertiary education becoming increasingly important, CityU has been actively exploring various collaborative and exchange programmes to widen students’ global perspective and allow them to tackle challenges worldwide.”

Chair Professor Wang Guiguo, Dean of School of Law, said it was an honour to have University College, Oxford, joining the School’s G-LEAP. “It is always a dream for students in Hong Kong and all over the world to gain a chance to study at University College, Oxford,” he said.

“The training of mainland judges has now entered a more advanced stage. Mainland judges also need to understand overseas legal systems. Judges who enrol in the programme can study at CityU as well as renowned overseas institutions, so they can compare the different viewpoints and judicial procedures of overseas countries. At the same time, our local law students will benefit from studying alongside the mainland judges,” Professor Wang added.

Professor Adrian Zuckerman, University College, Oxford, said the arrangement placed CityU students in a privileged position. “Not only are CityU students fortunate enough to study in such a major city as Hong Kong, the gateway to China, but they will now have the global edge with access to University College, Oxford,” he said.

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