“Buffalo is one of the most friendly and international cities I have visited in the US. Buffalonians are eager to help and say “Hi” to newcomers who make Buffalo their home.” – Shao-Hua (Jason) L. ’18, Two-year J.D. Program graduate from Taiwan
The University at Buffalo (UB) School of Law is the State University of New York (SUNY)’s law school. Set on the flagship campus of a research-intensive public university, the largest in the Northeastern US, it is so much more than your average law school. UB School of Law provides a top-quality education in a community that embraces diversity and is dedicated to its students’ success.
UB’s Jump Start program is one example, offering a highly desirable study option for aspiring lawyers worldwide. This free, 4-week summer course is designed especially for UB School of Law’s incoming international students to welcome them to the law school prior to the start of the academic year, and to provide them with the necessary background information and institutional support to allow them to begin the semester fully prepared for U.S. law school.
On top of a valuable introduction to US legal vocabulary and concepts, UB Jump Start offers a seamless transition to campus life, giving students the chance to set up housing, address enrollment issues and meet fellow students before the hustle and bustle begins.
“I found the Jump Start program very useful and interesting,” says Bashir R. ’20, Cross-Border Legal Studies LL.M. student, originally from Afghanistan.
“It is a unique program that teaches participants the practical approaches for being a successful student in law school by providing the needed knowledge and tools,” he adds. “Everyone attends law school to learn as much as possible in order to achieve his or her dream. This program facilitates that achievement.”
Jump Start is delivered by William MacDonald, the school’s director of academic success. MacDonald draws upon his extensive expertise providing academic support to law students to provide an individualized educational experience to UB School of Law’s incoming international students.
UB School of Law is a space that allows a personalized and collaborative culture to flourish. Here, students are assigned their own faculty advisor as well as an accomplished attorney mentor who interacts with them throughout their law school careers. Close links to the Western New York legal community and alumni network form the bedrock of this law school, giving students access to unrivalled career advice and wide-ranging career opportunities. The School’s Career Services Office helps facilitate these relationships and provides invaluable assistance as students begin their search for employment.
“The Career Services Office is always there waiting to help you,” Shao-Hua, a Two-year J.D. Program graduate from Taiwan explains. “From drafting my cover letter and résumé to coaching me on interviews and offer negotiation, the Career Services Office helped me secure my summer internships and my current permanent position.”
Students of all programs at UB School of Law greatly benefit from the institute’s unique location. Buffalo itself sits just 20 minutes from the Canadian border and is consequently known as a hub for cross-border activity.
This proximity to one of the nation’s most influential trading partners inspires collaborative connections with some of the region’s most prestigious law firms, all of whom engage in cross-border legal practice. Students learn from experienced attorneys and members of the faculty, acquiring crucial skills that can be applied to cross-border work anywhere in the world.
“UB School of Law…provides international lawyers an opportunity to receive comprehensive US legal training in a relatively short period of time,” adds Shao-Hua.
“The externship opportunities with financial institutions and federal and state courts…give students hands-on legal experience even before graduation. I believe the experience I got from my externship at New York State Supreme Court and Morgan Stanley Capital Inc. helped me secure my current position at M&T Bank.”
But that’s not all that makes UB School of Law a desirable study destination. Widely known as ‘The City of Good Neighbors’, the people of Buffalo-Niagara are renowned for their welcoming nature and spirited sense of loyalty. Voted America’s Friendliest City by Travel & Leisure magazine, Buffalo wins peoples’ hearts and remains with them for life.
And when it comes to value for money, the UB School of Law student experience is one that does it best.
“As the only public law school in New York State, UB’s affordable tuition makes it a most cost-efficient investment,” Shao-Hua says.
“Students can pursue their career goals in a public interest institution or return and practice in their home countries without feeling significant financial pressure. The New York City Program on Finance and Law is one of the best parts,” he adds, “allowing you to spend one semester learning and practicing finance and law in Manhattan. This means you limit the expensive cost of living in the financial center of the world, yet have a taste of the Big Apple.”
Add the fact that the University at Buffalo features one of the most international student communities in the US – hosting a global population of 5,000 non-native students from 115 countries – and it’s clear that UB School of Law offers a valuable experience in a warm and welcoming environment.