As a university student, Liwei Wang wrote a paper on Chinese antitrust law that was published in International Business Daily, an official government newspaper. Soon after graduation, she was hired by a prestigious Beijing law firm to work on IPOs for companies in the country’s booming economy. She researched environmental, property, and tax laws that might affect the success of the companies her firm represented. “The work was fantastic,” she says. “Every day was a new challenge.”
But Wang wanted to know more, so after a year on the job, she came to the Law School to learn the intricacies of the U.S. legal system and improve her already suitable English. “I was afraid I wouldn’t understand what the teacher is talking about,” she says, but that hasn’t been the case. When she has questions, professors and students are ready to help. “I love it here,” she says.
Wang is studying contract law, business associations and corporations, negotiation, and legal writing. Next semester the LL.M. student plans to take an antitrust course.
This isn’t her first experience studying abroad. In 2008, Wang spent the summer at the University of Oxford. “I love to experience different lifestyles and see different worlds with my own eyes,” she says.
Wang is also committed to helping others. Before arriving in Minneapolis, she interned at Peking University’s Center for Women’s Law & Legal Services. China’s first NGO, the Center fights for women’s rights in a country where their male counterparts are often paid more. Wang recently represented a woman at a large company who was paid one-fourth what men performing the same job were paid. The Center helped the woman win her lawsuit, but she was later fired anyway. “It’s sad,” Wang says. “Sometimes we can never win.”
When she returns to China in 2011, Wang hopes to get a job working on IPOs for a U.S. or British law firm. She had already decided on her long-term goal: “My ambition is to help reform the Chinese legal system,” she says. “I want to learn as much as I can and go back and help my country.”