When deciding on which law school was right for her, Laura Arcadipane ’15 was immediately drawn to Villanova Law’s JD/LLM International Studies program. The school’s core curriculum provided the analytical and writing skills she needed, and the program offered the international educational opportunities she craved. A testament to her hard work, Arcadipane graduated valedictorian of her LLM class this fall and today, works at one of the top international law firms in its Brussels office.
The JD/LLM International Studies program offers students the opportunity to earn both a Villanova Law JD and an LLM (Master’s Degree in Law) from a school abroad in three to three and a half years. Among the many degrees offered, Arcadipane chose to pursue her LLM in European and International Business Law (EIBL) from the University of Leiden in the Netherlands.
“Leiden’s Advanced EIBL program stuck out. It combined European affairs with business law, making it the most practical for my career and marketable in the U.S. and Europe.”
For Arcadipane, the most challenging aspect of the program was learning an entirely new legal system, but her first two years at Villanova Law had set her up for success – particularly her business organization class and legal writing classes.
“My legal writing classes prepared me better than I could have imagined,” she said. “With that strong foundation, I was able to focus on the new material as opposed to stressing about the writing style.”
The most rewarding aspect of her year in at the University of Leiden was participating in the European Law Moot Court Competition, which focused on state aid and public procurement – two topics which she hadn’t studied prior to the competition. In addition to legal research and analysis, Arcadipane and her team had to prepare arguments in both French and English, as the competition was bilingual.
“In this competition, you need to be prepared to answer a question in whichever language the judge asks it. Completing this competition and making it to the finals, both as an individual and as a team, is one of my proudest achievements.”