I was lucky enough to take part in the University of Stockholm Winter Programme during Semester 2, 2021. I was enrolled in the International Criminal Law Course, which focused on the processes and procedures of the International Criminal Court (ICC). One of the key highlights of this experience was the opportunity to engage with students from around the world – from Paris, Hungary, Australia and Sweden! Only 27 students enrolled in the course, ranging from those early on in their law degree, and those like myself who are close to graduating.
We were honoured to be taught by Professor Mark Klamberg, who is well-known in the International Law field and is often cited by the top International Courts. I must admit the course was intensive and tested my time management and organizational skills. The lectures were four days a week, from 9:00-11:00 pm NZ time, with seminar assignments due every third day, two written group assignments, an oral assignment (which was marked by a former International Criminal Court Judge!) and a final essay. Regardless, it was extremely rewarding and looking back; I am very proud of all I have accomplished over the three month period.
As there was only a limited number of students enrolled in the course, and participation at each lecture/seminar was mandatory, it was not long before we all became well-acquainted and got to know one another. The group assignments allowed me to work with students from Australia and Sweden, which provided a different perspective/outlook towards the law – especially a civil law perspective that contrasts with our common law system in New Zealand. Through this, I have made a number of lifelong friends who anticipate getting together and pursuing our Master’s degrees in the near future. One of the most memorable parts of the course was the guest lectures by the renowned International Criminal Court Judge Christine van den Wyngaert who provided an insight into her profession and a few words of wisdom for us aspiring lawyers. She spoke about what was working well at the ICC and what aspects of the Court (which is still developing) required refinement – for example, upholding the participatory rights of victims at the ICC which is proving difficult for the ICC to implement. This course allowed for an invaluable insight into the International Criminal Law jurisdiction – an outlook which is not provided in any law electives.
It was a well-structured course, with each week focusing on a different aspect/topic of International Criminal law, and a good balance of lecturing and class discussions. I would highly recommend any law students interested in International law or Criminal law (or if you’re like me, both!) to complete this course. It was a wonderful experience and one which I am very grateful for. As I was enrolled at the University of Stockholm during the duration of this course, I am now considered an Alumni allowing me to undertake a Master’s degree at the University of Stockholm in the future. Once again, thank you to the lovely 360 International Team for this opportunity and your continued support throughout this course.