Odysseas Theofanis

Financial Law, The University of Chicago, Illinois
2016-2017 Fulbright Graduate Student

Academically, I had the opportunity to study in one of the top U.S. law schools. The competition was very intense, and I had to spend long hours in the library to cope with it, especially during the first quarter. Nonetheless, being exposed to the US legal system and education was incredibly rewarding. Our professors did not just teach us the black letter law, which was taken for granted. On the contrary, their goal was to instill us a method of thinking and give us the tools to argue about future applications of the law that had not come up yet, where they had to provide arguments for both sides. Moreover, we had to deliver weekly written assignments, improving thus our lawyer skills and competencies. What I found the most important was the variety of classes we were able to take such as Structuring Financial Instruments, Behavioral Law and Economics, and Private Equity Agreements.

On another topic, I was very impressed by the openness of American people, how willing they were to speak with us  and initiate conversations. They were not afraid to talk and deliver their thoughts to us, and they would never make us feel like strangers. Accordingly, our professors were very open to listening to our ideas, and they were very eager to work with us, either by co-authoring papers or offering us research assistant positions. Even though it is a cliché, America is the land of opportunities to people who are willing to work hard (and, of course, have a bit of luck).

My Fulbright year is almost over, and I already feel nostalgic, thinking about the experiences that I lived these last ten months. Looking forward, it was one of the best years of my life and the year that transformed me the most as a person and as a lawyer. I will always be grateful to the Fulbright Foundation for helping me in achieving my dream and transforming me as a person.

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