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International Honors Program

Moot Court Classroom
IHP Scholar and CICL Student Fellow Ashlee Aguiar '16 during the final round of the Hon. Milton Mollen Moot Court Competition (October 2014)


The St. John’s International Honors Program (IHP) offers selected entering St. John’s students who plan to pursue international legal practice a partial or full-tuition scholarship to fund their studies, as well as access to additional stipends to fund research, academic travel, and student teaching.  IHP Scholars are entitled to draw up to $5000 after successful completion of their first year of law school, in the form of a grant paid for by the Center for International and Comparative Law.  The grant may be used for: research, travel and living expenses for eligible summer projects and employment.  Students apply for IHP before entering St. John’s Law, and participate in the program for their full three years at St. John’s.

The Application Process

Students apply to the International Honors Program at the same time they apply to St. John’s Law.  In addition to the St. John’s Law application, students also write an IHP Addendum, explaining their reasons for wanting to be IHP Scholars.  Upon admission to St. John’s Law, applications are sent to the IHP Review Committee.  The Committee looks at the complete application, focusing on:

  • LSAT, undergraduate GPA and undergraduate university;
  • Undergraduate majors that serve as a foundation for international legal practice, such as, international relations, political science, area studies, foreign languages, economics, history, business administration, and international business;
  • Academic achievement in international topics, including an honors thesis, membership in academic honors societies and publications;
  • Experience living or working overseas, including study abroad, Peace Corps, military service, and/or volunteer activities; and
  • Demonstrated ability in one or more foreign languages.

Who are St. John’s IHP Scholars?

St. John’s provides four potential academic tracks in the International Legal Practice Pathway that cover a broad range of legal practice in a globalized economy:

  • Cross-Border Transactions and Business Counseling;
  • International Dispute Resolution and Litigation;
  • Public International Law and Human Rights; and
  • National Security and International Law Enforcement.

IHP scholars have a demonstrated interested in one or more of those tracks, and come to law school with an academic background and/or expertise and experience that match well with international practice.

What is the IHP Scholars Program?

While at St. John’s, IHP Scholars participate in a full program under the supervision of the IHP Faculty Director, which includes, beginning in the first year, participation in the International Honors Colloquium – a monthly program that brings the IHP Scholars and the Center for International and Comparative Law’s Student Fellows together with St. John’s faculty for focused discussions led by a practitioner or scholar on hot topics in international practice.  IHP Scholars also have preferential access to:

  • Summer study abroad in Rome or Paris following 1L year;
  • Placement in an International Law Practicum or Academic Exchange in Spring of 2L or Fall of 3L year;
  • Guaranteed spot in limited-enrollment international and comparative law electives in 2L and 3L years;
  • Placement in the limited-enrollment Advanced International Law Colloquium in 3L year; and
  • Teaching Fellowships in 3L year.

In addition, beginning their first day of law school, IHP Scholars are assigned a faculty mentor (drawn from the extensive list of faculty with expertise in international and comparative law), a 3L student mentor, and a Career Development Officer with expertise in international practice.  Together, these IHP mentors help guide the IHP Scholars as they make decisions regarding curriculum, research, summer jobs, and long-term career planning.

International Law Day

We recently celebrated our inaugural International Law Day, where admitted students interested in international legal practice spent a full day at St. John's Law School.  These students sat in on courses focused on International Business Transactions and International Human Rights Law; spoke with current IHP Scholars, CICL Student Fellows and other JD students; learned about the international programs at St. John's and had a private lunch with the Center's Co-Directors and the Dean of the Law School!  You can see the schedule for our inaugural International Law Day here

We invite all aspiring IHP Scholars to:

  • Sit in on an international law course;
  • Speak with current IHP Scholars;
  • Meet with international and comparative law faculty and administrators; and
  • Tour St. John's Law School. 

To learn more about the International Honors Program, please contact Professor Christopher J. Borgen at [email protected] or (718) 990-1982.