Student: Alison Wong (2014)

If you’re interested in international relations, economics, modern history and/or cases with names such as EC-Bananas, then you may want to give International Trade Law a go. If those selling points are not enough, you’ll be assigned to read the smallest and cheapest (approx. $40) textbook in the history of law school!

What I enjoyed most about this course:

All economic perks aside, the course is fascinating and more relevant to our lives than one would imagine. You’ll gain insights into the philosophical and practical underpinnings of international trade law. You’ll learn about how the international trade regime is the only form of international law that countries manage to comply with almost everyday. You’ll get to test out your diplomacy skills in a mock World Trade Organization (WTO) trade round. You’ll learn to interpret and apply principles such as ‘most favoured nation’ and ‘nondiscrimination’ to real-life cases. And to top it all off, the course is jointly taught by a PhD student, and Yale-educated professor who explains the complexities of international trade in refreshingly simple, digestible terms.

What I found challenging:

The main challenge of this course is the 5000 word essay that accounts for 80% of your final mark. However, you can start preparing well in advance as you’ll receive the essay topics early on in the course.

How the course will be relevant for the future:

The lecturers make a point of highlighting how useful this course is for your career prospects - and they have a point. As the world economy becomes increasingly integrated, businesses and governments will continue to seek the expertise and skills of international trade lawyers. Pursuing a career in this area could also mean that you’ll be jetting off to work in organisations such as the WTO and International Chamber of Commerce (located in Paris), just to name a few!