The Bright Side of Brexit for Law Students

Apr 4, 2017 at 12:00am ET By Joanna Hughes

Not many members of the academic community came down on the side of Brexit. However, there may be an upside for law students, according to a recent Financial Times article. Here’s a closer look at why the UK’s withdrawal from the EU may mean new opportunities for law students.

A Teaching Opportunity

While it’s not clear yet what Brexit specifically means for international mobility and research funding in the UK, most agree that the future of international exchange may be in jeopardy. However, because of the ambiguity of the situation as well as the number of complex legal problems likely to arise during the transition, more law students are pursuing studies in EU law with an eye on making themselves more desirable in the post-Brexit job market.

“For those of us going to work for large international law firms,” one student told FT, “There is an expectation that many clients will be multinational companies, and that we cannot afford to be ignorant of major international political changes.”

More Knowledge, More Applications

And while the knowledge students learn in these law school classes is associated with Brexit, its potential applications are much broader. As Simon Collinson, chair of the UK’s Chartered Association of Business Schools told FT, “Business schools are good at being responsive, adjusting their teaching to political and economic changes like these.”

Take the Imperial College Business School, for example, where discussions on Brexit are already being integrated into the curriculum. Said Professor of Strategy George Yip, “I’ve already added a welcoming message to students saying what an incredible time it is in the history of the world to be discussing issues of international business.”

The takeaway? Brexit is happening. But with the right training and knowledge, today’s law students may be tomorrow’s leaders when it comes to navigating the transition to Brexit and its aftermath.

 

Joanna worked in higher education administration for many years at a leading research institution before becoming a full-time freelance writer. She lives in the beautiful White Mountains region of New Hampshire with her family.

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