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My name is Taryn Dusek. I just finished my first year as an evening student at SMU Dedman School of Law Law, and I am currently studying at University College in Oxford, England with the summer abroad program. I am taking Income Taxation with Professor Lischer, as well as a tutorial on the E.U. Constitution. I have never studied abroad before. In fact, the most time I’ve ever spent abroad was a few weeks on a school trip to Europe when I was 15, so I am very excited to experience it as an adult.
Our first week in Oxford was certainly packed with activities. I arrived in Oxford last Tuesday morning at about 9 a.m. and checked into my room at University College. I then lugged my much too large suitcase up a few flights of stairs to my room and after resting for a few hours met up with the rest of the group to get a quick tour of central Oxford from Professor Winship. The evening culminated in a group dinner and a World Cup game. >> Read more
Week 2: Highlights from the High Table Dinner - Tradition of the Oxford Program
It’s about 11 p.m. in Oxford, and I just returned to my dorm room from another Tuesday night High Table dinner. One of the traditions of the Oxford program is the High Table dinner, held every Tuesday night while we are studying at University College. We meet as a group for a reception in the Fellows’ Garden around 6:30 p.m., and then continue on to dinner as a large group in the Alington Room. Each High Table dinner features a multi-course dinner followed by a guest speaker. The guest speaker traditionally shares the meal with the SMU Dedman School of Law students, and tonight I was fortunate to sit with our guest speaker, Dr.Dorota Leczykiewicz, Junior Research Fellow at Trinity College.
Dr. Leczykiewicz has an enthusiasm and passion for her studies that is truly contagious, and after we left dinner a number of students wished to speak with her further. The tradition after High Table dinner is to meet in the University College Cellar for fellowship and continued discussion. I was very excited to see that Dr. Leczykiewicz and her husband had decided to join the rest of the SMU students and professors when I made my way down to the Cellar. For the rest of the evening I had the opportunity to speak individually with Dr. Leczykiewicz about her research and knowledge regarding the European Union and its effect on the legal systems of the member states. Since I am taking a tutorial on the E.U. Constitution at Trinity College while I am in Oxford, this matter was of particular interest to me. However, I found myself even more engaged by what she had to say regarding the educational experience. >> Read more
Week 3: Tour of Legal London
Last week, we began our week of classes with a day spent away from Oxford. On Monday, we got on the train in Oxford and made the quick trip to London for a tour of the Inns of Court and what is commonly referred to as “Legal London.” We met our tour guide, Victoria, outside the tube station and made our way to the Middle Temple, one of the four Inns of Court in London.
The Inns of Court in London have the right to call men and women to the Bar, or admit those that have completed all of the necessary qualifications to become a practicing lawyer in England. The Inns of Court have a long tradition, and many important historical figures have been members of one of the four Inns of Court. Victoria took us on a day-long tour of the Inns of Court, and taught us all about the history of the Inns and the legal profession in England. I personally found the tour fascinating, since I honestly didn’t know much about the differences between the legal profession in the United States and England. I not only learned a lot about the history, but also about the daily lives of attorneys in England today. >> Read more