Lebanese American University


Rave reviews for LAU’s English for Lawyers

LAU’s Continuing Education Program offers English for Lawyers and Beirut’s attorneys are giving it ecstatic reviews.

Lebanese attorney Michelle Sabagha-Jumblatt was on a trip to Canada when she heard LAU’s Continuing Education Program (CEP) was offering a course in English for lawyers. “I called long-distance to register because I know how serious LAU is.”

Sabagha-Jumblatt had previously taken a course in English for lawyers at another education center in Beirut, but was totally unsatisfied. “The LAU course,” on the other hand, “is unparalleled in its quality,” she says, adding, “Dr. Ghada Awada is fantastic! She gives us real-life applications to work on, such as contracts and power of attorney. We come tired from work but once we’re in class, we are excited and don’t even notice the clock ticking because we learning and benefiting so much.”

Many Lebanese lawyers  are French educated, but operating in a legal world that is increasingly globalized and reliant on English. For them, the CEP course is particularly useful. For example, Issam Moallem is a fully employed French-educated attorney currently enrolled in the program.  While pursuing his Ph.D. at Montpelier, he also has his eyes on LAU’s English language LL.M. degree, and is confident the CEP course will prepare him for it. “I’m feeling the benefits already,” he enthuses. “This morning I sent two emails to clients using the English legal prepositions we learned in class. It was thrilling to see how useful what we learn is! In class, Dr. Awada asks us to draft contracts and then we go over them and redraft them, making corrections. She is really amazing.”

CEP Director Michel Majdalani explains that the center “diligently works on recruiting those exceptional trainers who have a unique combination of practical know-how, street smart orientation and superior communication skills.”

And exceptional Awada is. A researcher with a Ph.D. from the École des Hautes Etudes Internationales et Politiques (Paris), she authored several legal textbooks and articles. In the classroom, she moves effortlessly between languages, always ready to help students whether they are French or Arabic educated. But it is her passion and commitment, not just her expertise which has left a deep impact on students.

“Among all the programs I have designed, this one is the dearest to my heart, due to its challenging nature,” says Awada. “The endless appreciation I receive from the participants feeds my passion even more. I’m inspired by K. Patricia Cross who believed that the task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate ‘apparently ordinary’ people to unusual effort.  The tough problem is not in identifying winners — it is in making winners out of ordinary people.”

The English for Lawyers program is part of a new cluster of professional English programs recently pioneered, designed and introduced by CEP to serve the various professional communities of practice. While it has already offered the English for Healthcare program, the center is planning to start English for Tourism, English for Banking in addition to the more generic English for Professionals.

“The positioning of these professional courses is creating a new demand in the marketplace as we speak the language of the professionals and not the other way around,” Majdalani says.

Click here for more information about the English for Lawyers program. 


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