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Pepperdine Caruso Law Moves Summer Session to the Virtual Classroom

Academic courses and professional training programs in dispute resolution will be offered online to prepare students for conflict management demands.

The Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University Rick J. Caruso School of Law will offer its premier academic program and popular training courses, which are usually held in Malibu, California, in a remote instruction format. This necessary shift creates an opportunity for law students and practicing professionals to take advantage of the Institute’s comprehensive curriculum, taught by its distinguished faculty and nationally-recognized trainers. Programs begin May 18 and run through August 1, 2020, with a second session planned for later in the summer.

Professor Sukhsimranjit Singh, an experienced international mediator and the managing director of the Straus Institute, anticipates a greater demand for conflict resolution skills as the world adapts to a new normal created by the COVID-19 pandemic. “Now more than ever, we need empathetic leaders, effective peacemakers, and skilled problem solvers,” he says. “We need individuals to identify challenges, manage conflict across languages and cultures, and help rebuild resilient communities.”

Translating Theory into Practice Online

Known for its hands-on instruction and small group training style, the Institute and its programs are well-adapted for the online environment, carrying forward the practice-centered modules that serve as the hallmark of a Straus education. Professors at the Institute are experienced and well-versed in teaching courses online, as the Institute has successfully implemented three online degree programs since 2017. “The ability to effectively conduct negotiations online arises naturally from this format,” says Tom Stipanowich, Associate Dean of the Straus Institute. “The field of virtual mediation will become increasingly important in the years to come.”

Opportunities for Visiting Students

Juris doctor (JD) candidates from any ABA-accredited law school can apply to enroll as visiting law students and may receive credit toward their JD degree at their home schools. The Straus Institute offers one-of-a-kind classes for law students in dispute resolution, mediation and arbitration, and conflict management in two-week or intensive weekend formats. Interested JD students can find more information or apply here.

Skills-Based Training Programs for Professionals at All Levels and Across Industries

Two popular training sessions, the Professional Skills Program and Mediating the Litigated Case, will be conducted by professors and experts from around the world. The Gateway to Straus program, a summer institute designed to introduce students to US law and alternative dispute resolution (ADR), will be held over five days and in its online format, can draw participants from anywhere in the world without the added cost of travel. Registration links and more information are available here.

Caruso Law will expand its traditional summer schedule for current JD students with additional courses. Six classes will be taught online during the first session, and at least one class will be offered in the second. This larger course list will allow students to progress further in their law school career during a season in which fewer law firms and courts are able to hire summer interns. The summer schedule is posted here.