Columbia Law School
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Columbia Law School Executive LL.M.: Elite, intensive, transformative

Before joining Columbia Law School, Patrick Yip already had five degrees. The Vice Chair for  Deloitte’s China practice had an undergraduate accounting degree and master’s degree in tax from the University of Texas at Austin, an undergraduate law degree from the University of Cambridge in the UK, an MBA degree from the University of Chicago, and an LL.M. degree from UC Berkeley. Learning about law, economics, and finance and seeing how they interact in the context of real-life issues fascinated him. Yip loved using all he knew to create value for his clients and colleagues.

When he came across Columbia Law’s Executive LL.M., he saw an opportunity to further boost his impact. “I found Columbia’s E.LL.M. a rather innovative programme that would enable me to learn about the latest developments in critical, emerging business and legal issues that are relevant and impactful to my practice and career,” he says.

True enough, Columbia Law lived up to its “sterling reputation as an academic powerhouse.” “I was often amazed by the exceptionally high quality of the faculty (and their research and points of view) and the diversified student body,” Yip says.

The E.LL.M. is a six-month, accelerated, hybrid programme which combines online learning with a 12-week residency in NYC, culminating in an Ivy League Master of Laws degree. Unlike traditional LL.M. programs–which also culminate in a Master of Laws degree–junior and senior practitioners can attain personal and professional growth while fitting the programme around their life and career commitments. Columbia Law also understands the importance of being located in NYC, a capital for business, law, and culture. Curated events are held throughout the Summer Residency, such as a Yankees Game, a Broadway show, kayaking in the Hudson River, and events with Columbia Law alumni.

“I believe I am now a more enlightened and equipped professional post-Columbia,” says Yip. “I am more prepared than ever to take on the new challenges with which I will be faced in a rapidly changing world.”

A Six-Month Transformation: The Executive LL.M. Program at Columbia Law

Small classes, close relationships

The E.LL.M. curriculum focuses on global business law. Bringing these modules to life is a faculty that has shaped policy and influenced the world’s most powerful public and private institutions. They’re part of a vibrant community of scholars and industry bigwigs who are leading the creation of AI regulation, driving entrepreneurship and community development, and helping to “save the world”.

“The premier faculty is highly qualified and has deep expertise in international and comparative law,” says Daniel He ’19 E.LL.M., partner at Junhe.

The calibre and experience of Columbia Law’s faculty members match each year’s E.LL.M. cohort – which can be characterised as experienced, ambitious, successful, global, and committed to growth. Together, they explore an innovative and cutting-edge combination of practical business knowledge with law.

Ivy Ngana ‘21 E.LL.M., Senior Counsel at Wells Fargo got an introduction to American law while also delving into areas of corporate law such as M&A and securities regulation. Carolina Nery Selders ’20 E.LL.M., PhD candidate at the Pontifical Catholic University, São Paulo, discovered the practical implications of the global economy on the legal world.

Other subjects taught in the programme have included Financial Statement Analysis, Data Analytics, and Regulation of the Digital Economy – ideal for roles that intersect law with other rapidly evolving disciplines. The unique “Colloquium in Global Business Law” class, for example, changes each year in response to the market, alumni feedback, and the incoming class.

Students build long lasting connections with the world-class faculty during the program, especially during the Summer Residency. The E.LL.M.s are the only students the professors teach during the summer and they interact with them daily during the residency. E.LL.M. students are often invited to sit in on court cases, visit legal associations, and share a meal with their Columbia professors.

Inside Columbia Law’s Executive LL.M. Program

Course materials and discussions are well-designed for experienced, busy practitioners. Naomi Chen ’20 E.LL.M., Chief Compliance Officer at China Construction Bank, remembers the thought-provoking discussions and the exchange of motivating ideas with other experienced legal professionals from all over the world. Min Gon Kim ‘21 E.LL.M., Senior Associate at Demarest Advogados, was glad the programme let him, a father of two children, live and learn in a premier law school while only being away from work and family for three months.

“The classes were very lively and motivated me to be an active participant. Every class encouraged self-reflection and critical thinking in the application of the concepts learned in a professional setting. What I learned in class added value to my professional development,” says Kim.

Columbia Law School

Source: Columbia Law School

“When I look back, I feel Columbia’s Executive LL.M. programme was my perfect selection for continuous professional education. The practical experience, rich faculty, and high-quality resources have been designed to satisfy the intellectual hunger of professionals,” says Sanjay Jhanwar ’20 E.LL.M., managing partner at Chir Amrit Legal LLP.

The benefits extend past campus and graduation. As E.LL.M. alumni, they have access to a 27,000+ alumni network comprised of leading global legal practitioners.

“Alongside huge values added to my resumé, for me, the degree from Columbia Law means a door key granting access to new professional horizons in my life,” says Kim. “With a degree from an institution as recognisable as Columbia, I see doors open for me in American and international legal markets.”

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