Q&A with LL.M. Student Dr. Ahmed Dabash, Fulbright Scholar from Egypt, Ph.D. in Islamic Law
Editor’s Note: This is part of a series of Q&As with incoming Minnesota Law students.
Dr. Dabash, LL.M. ’19, graduated from Cairo University with high honors and a Ph.D. in Islamic Law. In the fall of 2016, he traveled to the United States as part of an Egyptian delegation to observe American democracy and inclusiveness. He wants to continue his studies in Comparative Law, Human Rights, and Bioethics at the University of Minnesota and integrate his studies in western academia to his teaching and research in Egypt. He is currently a Fulbright scholar.
You are Fulbright scholar. Can you describe that experience and what you are doing?
For an international student, being a Fulbrighter is an extraordinary experience. Each Fulbrighter is gifted in a way. I met many Fulbright scholars in different disciplines in Egypt and in an Arkansas pre-academic program operated by Spring International; all of them are proud to be a part of this exchange and global understanding program, and believe that this program is changing the world. The Fulbright binational committee in Egypt choose the best of the best through a complicated process of interviews, tests, and paperwork; in my case, I have four degrees: B.Sc., B.A, M.A and Ph.D. I am a tenured faculty member at Cairo University. My previous research includes a comparison between the Islamic legal system and civil law. I published three papers, one of which is in technology law. My future research will focus on a legal comparison with the American common legal system.
Why did you choose Minnesota Law?
With the Fulbright, I could apply to five American universities. The University of Minnesota was on the top of my list because of its great reputation as one of the best law schools. Minnesota Law’s LL.M program is the perfect program for me because it will enable me to undertake this comparative legal study. I also love Minnesota Law because of its great location in the Twin Cities with its wide diversity and development. Living in Minneapolis fits me the best as a foreign student coming from Cairo, one of the biggest cities in the world.
What do you hope to get out of your LL.M experience?
Minnesota Law’s LL.M program is distinguished by 11 different concentrations and a very wide variety of courses. Whatever it is, you are going to find your branch of interest in law. My B.Sc. is in pharmaceutical science; my Ph.D. is in Islamic law. I believe my LL.M experience will help me merge all my experience together by studying Bioethics, FDA law, and Human Rights to focus my area of future research in Islamic bioethics and human rights.
What do you plan to do after graduation?
As a teacher of law, I am interested in learning the Socratic method and engaging in an atmosphere of inquiry and critical thinking. Upon returning to Egypt, my aim will be to integrate what I learn from western academia in teaching and research. As earning an LL.M in American law makes me an authorized highly qualified consultant, my long-term goal is to become a full professor and participate in the field of legislation. In addition, teaching comparative law in a highly ranked university is also one of my hopes.
What are the three words that describe you best?
Describing a human life in only three words is not that easy, but you can say: philanthropist, persistent, and analytical.
Anything else you’d like to tell the Minnesota Law community about yourself?
I believe that my presence at Minnesota Law will enhance its community because I can share my own experiences studying and practicing Islamic law, economy, and politics in Egypt. I believe I have a lot to discuss in the classroom through my multidisciplinary experience.