VLGS Dean Beth Locker attends First Philippine Clinical Legal Education Summit
Beth Locker, Vermont Law and Graduate School (VLGS) associate dean for experiential learning, director of the JD Externship Program, and professor of law, attended and spoke on a panel at the First Philippine Clinical Legal Education Summit, held December 1 to 3, 2022 in Manila, Philippines. The summit was held by the Philippines' Legal Education Board, in partnership with the Supreme Court Oversight Committee on the Implementation of Rule 138-A or the Revised Law Student Practice Rule, the Philippine Association of Law Schools, and the Association of Law Students of the Philippines.
“The opportunity to meet with law school professors and deans from across the Philippines and see first-hand how they are embracing our model of experiential education was thrilling,” said Locker. “They are providing their students with hands-on, practical skills while also addressing access to justice issues.”
Locker has spent the past 2 years working with The Legal Education Board of the Philippines to help create an externship program within their nation, modeled after the program at VLGS. In 2019, Filipino law schools were charged with implementing a new Supreme Court rule requiring experiential education in the law school curriculum. The Philippines delegation, made up of judiciary, deans, and commissioners, sought the help of VLGS in order to create their program. Locker, together with The Asia Foundation and Nicole Killoran, professor of law at VLGS, developed training materials and supported the creation of a nationwide legal externship program across the Philippines.
“Professor Locker has been very instrumental in providing our law schools with ideas on how they can successfully institutionalize their own externship programs,” said Charm Nolasco, court attorney at the Supreme Court of the Philippines. “I was more than happy when she flew to the Philippines to attend the First Philippine Clinical Legal Education Summit, and unselfishly shared her thoughts on how clinical legal education is being implemented in our law schools and how they can move forward to strengthen and sustain the program."
“It was a blessing that with the help of The Asia Foundation, the legal education community of the country met an enabler: Beth Locker of the Vermont Law and Graduate School,” said Josefe C. Sorrera-Ty, commissioner of the Legal Education Board of the Philippines. “Beth was very generous with her wisdom and time. She held our hands as we took our "baby" steps into the new world of Clinical Legal Education. More than a hundred law schools benefited from Beth's teaching. Beth has made a profound impact not only on the lives of the law faculty of the country but also on the lives of Filipino law students. Beth gave the legal education community optimism and confidence that we will deepen the learning of our law students and enhance access to justice through the Clinical Legal Education Program.”
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