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JGU Launches 3 Year Law BA Honours Programme

Harvard Professor inaugurates the B.A. (Hons.) in Legal Studies at Jindal Global Law School with a public lecture on 'Changing the World Through Law'.

In a first, O.P. Jindal Global University (JGU) launches 3-year B.A. Hons. programme in Legal Studies that aims to nurture legal imagination while building a sound understanding of history and organization of legal systems from national, international and comparative perspectives and will be offered by the varsity’s law school. The programme will begin admitting students from the academic year 2020-21.

The B.A. (Hons.) programme in Legal Studies strives to familiarise students with major legal and political discourses while imparting skills essential for the performance of pre-legal and paralegal works as well as preparing them for careers in law, judiciary, academia, research, and public service. Its holistic training seeks to develop, in students, a strong legal and social sciences research foundation. The programme also enables them to express opinions on legal issues concisely and clearly, to identify, analyse and address legal problems and assess the social impact of the law.

Launching the new programme, Dr.C. Raj Kumar, Founding Vice-Chancellor of JGU and Dean of Jindal Global Law School said, “This new undergraduate programme in law will fulfill a much-needed gap in Indian higher education. It builds on the efforts of the Indian high school education system, which has introduced 'Legal Studies' as a course in recent years."

"The UG programme in law has provided an opportunity to pursue legal studies even before the study of law so that students can make informed choices as to whether they want to pursue law as a career. After the undergraduate degree in legal studies, they can choose to pursue the three-year LLB, which will empower them to become a lawyer," he added.

The BA Legal Studies programme is interdisciplinary in nature and the curriculum has focussed on the social, economic, and political context of law in society, which will enable the students to understand the nuances dimensions of building a society based on the rule of law and to promote access to justice.

"The students of BA Legal Studies being part of the Jindal Global Law School will have the opportunities to experience short term study abroad programmes in law that are held at Harvard University, University of Oxford, Fletcher School-Tufts University and also exchange programmes at many universities around the world including at the University of Arizona," said Kumar.

The launch of the first multi-disciplinary undergraduate programme in Legal Studies was preceded by a lecture on ‘Changing the World Through Law’ by Stephen P. Marks, Francois-Xavier Bagnoud, Professor of Health and Human Rights at Harvard University. In his lecture, Marks reflected on his youth that attracted him to the study of law and on the role of law in his professional life, not as a typical lawyer in private practice or a law firm but in public service where law figured prominently.

Marks gave many examples of the role of law in his early professional career and drew the students’ attention to law’s ambiguous relations to justice as reflecting existing power relations and as a force for social change.

He said, “The study of law can prepare you to make lots of money helping those with money protect and expand their wealth but, more importantly, the study of law can also prepare you to be a problem-solver and an agent for positive change in a time of new challenges, such as climate change.”

“A three-year degree in legal studies at Jindal Global Law School is an excellent way to prepare for life using and understanding the role of law in society for those who have an aptitude for legal reasoning and problem-solving with a vision of making a better world,” he added.

The event was attended by over 400 high school students along with their teachers and counsellors. The Vice-Chancellor felicitated the school teachers and ignited the students’ aspirations to become teachers and professors of the future while expressing his concern for Indian society where very few bright people want to take up teaching as a profession.



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