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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Tokyo, Japan
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Budget Sheets: Summer
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Fact Sheet:
Language of instruction: English Areas of study: Law
Class Standing: J.D., LL.M., Other
Program Description:
Summer Abroad in Tokyo, Japan 

 Classes | Externships | Fees & Financial Aid | Housing | Exploring The Area | Travel Information | Testimonials | Contact Us

Mix & Match: Students may be placed in externships with top law firms and corporations in Tokyo or Seoul, South Korea. Alternatively, students may choose to continue on with their studies in Geneva or Oxford. 

Anticipated 2018 Dates:
5/28/18 - 6/19/18
Approximate Externship Dates: 6/25/18 - 7/27/18

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 ABA Disclosures 2018
Classes: Doing Business in Japan (4 units), Japanese Patent and Copyright Law (1 unit, optional)Tokyo2

Doing Business in Japan (Required – 4 units): There are three components that constitute the singular core class of Doing Business in Japan.The program begins with an introduction to the Japanese Legal System, which in the past has been taught by Professors Taniguchi and Abe. Students will explore court structures and basic principles of the civil law as adopted in Japan. The following weeks will include a lecture on Regulation of International Trade (in the past taught by Professor Matsushita) and an introduction to international contracts and financing by Professor Jimenez.  The classes will be held at the Asia Center of Japan. The students will be evaluated by an examination administered by each professor. 

Site may visits include:
  • National Diet (parliament)
  • Supreme Court
  • National Patent Office

Japanese Patent and Copyright Law (Optional – 1 unit): This optional course is for students who want to explore more deeply the Japanese intellectual property law system, comparing Japanese and U.S. systems, primarily patent and copyright law. This course is typically held at the office of the instructor. The class will likely be held in the evenings. The class will be taught by Professor Yoshiyuki Inaba, Senior Partner at TMI Associations, Tokyo Office. 

For more general information and FAQs on all of our programs, please visit

Externships: Tokyo, Seoul, or Mongolia (3-4 units)

Tokyo Externships: Externship placements will be arranged in Tokyo law firms, which have international law practices. Additionally, a limited number of externships may be arranged in corporate law departments at well-known Japanese corporations. Placements do not require knowledge of the Japanese language. However, bilingual students are in demand and may find a wider range of placement opportunities.

Seoul Externships: Externships are available in premier Korean law firms and corporations, including many specializing in intellectual property and in international transactional work.

Mongolia Externships: Externships are at a firm that is currently on the cutting edge of so many issues critical to a transitional economy, working and consulting with the government in improving access to health care and legal services. In a country like Mongolia, so rich in natural resources, they have produced draft legislation and legal reviews for transfers and licensing of mineral resources. In a country whose constitution guarantees a right to a clean environment, they have successfully resolved cases concerning use of land and access to mineral resources. The firm is in Ulaanbaatar, a fascinating city of about 800,000, still cognizant of the fact that the Mongol Empire was the largest ever established. A statue of Genghis Khan sits in the very center of the city. An externship would place you in U/B at the time of “Nadam”, a celebration of Mongolian culture, accomplishments, and place in world history.

Students gain practical experience by doing legal work under the supervision of a legal professional in the host country, while receiving invaluable integration into the legal culture of the country and make invaluable professional contacts. The expectation of an extern is full-time work from the period of the externship (e.g., 40 hours or more a week of supervised legal work). Santa Clara Law requires a minimum of 50 hours of supervised legal work for each externship unit of credit. Priority of externship placements is established in the order in which a student’s completed application and deposit payment are received. 

Please note placement times vary. Some placements may not be finalized until the start of the class portion and some placements are finalized during the class portion. Please be patient and do not book non-refundable travel.

Fees & Financial Aid

Deposit: A non-refundable deposit of $300 for the class and an additional non-refundable deposit of $700 for an externship (if applicable)  is required to secure your spot and it is applied to the tuition charge.

Tuition: The tuition charge is $1,125/unit for J.D. students. LL.M. students should contact us for tuition information.
In example, the total is $4,500 for classes and an additional $4,500 for an externship (if you select this option), for a total of $9,000.

Financial Aid: US law students are typically eligible for  financial aid to cover tuition, airfare, housing, food, local travel costs and school supplies (click here for more information). Financial Aid goes through a student's home institution. A consortium agreement is setup between the home institution and Santa Clara University.


Students are responsible for making their own housing arrangements during classes and the externship period. Students typically stay at the Asia Center of Japan (8-10-32 Akasaka, Minato, Tokyo 107-0052, Japan), where classes are held. Each year, the Center blocks some rooms for students of the program. Information about how to reserve a room at the Asia Center of Japan will be provided by the Program Director. Students are responsible for paying for their individual reservations. The 2015 pricing was as follows: 5/30-7/1 Single (new building) @ 7,000 JPY/night  (included free breakfast coupon), Twin sharing (new building) @ 6,000 JPY/night/person. Rates may fluctuate depending on current exchange rates. This includes a free breakfast coupon. The cafeteria at the Asia Center serves good, inexpensive food. Prior participants have enjoyed dining at this cafeteria as well as many other restaurants, since there are a wide variety of restaurants in Tokyo.

Santa Clara University does not endorse any housing provider or have any relationship with any housing provider and students should thoroughly research their housing options.  

Exploring The Area

Travel within Japan is convenient and efficient. The famous “bullet trains” make all of Japan accessible. Cost of transportation is reasonable when Japan Rail passes are purchased in the United States prior to departure. Tokyo presents an almost limitless panorama. This city of shrines is home not only to the Imperial Palace surrounded by the splendor of its gardens, but is also recognized for its Ginza district and skyscrapers. In addition, students may take the opportunity to explore China, Korea, and Southeast Asia before or after the scheduled program. Whether your interests lean toward sightseeing in cities like Kyoto, Nikko, Osaka, or Hiroshima, or you seek the adventure of climbing Mt. Fuji, the opportunities to enrich your experience are boundless in the Tokyo Study Abroad Program.

Travel Information

AXA/ACE Travel Assistance Program Information (all students enrolled in the program are covered)
US State Department Tips for Traveling Abroad
US State Department Travel Safety Information
US Department of State Country Specific Information
US Embassies/Consulates
US Department of State: Passport Services
US Department of State Worldwide Caution
Centers for Disease Control Health Information
Traveling with Disabilities in Japan


Summer 2017 Student Evaluation: Overall Experience 4.54 (Scale of 1-5, 1=poor, 5=excellent)

"The externship experience not only gave me an opportunity to build my legal skills but also exposed me to the law firm culture in Japan, but most importantly, I made important networks in Japan that will follow my legal career forever." Moony Qi, Berkeley School of Law (2017)

"Loved the program. The site visits were amazing and we even got to speak to a senator! In terms of the classes, nothing quite puts the U.S. legal system into perspective like learning about another country's legal system. And the externship was a life altering experience, which definitely helped me find my career path." Jonathan Liu, SCU (2017)

"I had a wonderful time with the SCU Abroad in Tokyo Program this summer. The courses were engaging, the professors were honest and knowledgeable, and the tours to the various government facilities (i.e. the National Diet, Japan's Trademark and Patent Office) were quite insightful. The reading materials provided were quite concise, interesting, and very easy to digest. I enjoyed learning about the legal challenges facing a society formed around a history that was starkly different to that of the United States. The program director was consistently informative in terms of the requirements of the program, when the program students were to meet for tours, and how the classes and internships were going to be conducted. The professors and the program director in Japan were wonderful people and made me feel welcome in Japan. My overall experience in Japan has opened my eyes to the possibility of pursuing a profession in international law with an emphasis on U.S.-Japan international trade relations." Anonymous, SCU (2016)

"Adding to the amazing contacts I made and the immersive culture experience, I was pleased by the quality of the law classes offered by SCU Law in Tokyo. I was enriched as much academically as culturally. It was also a wonderful time to interact with other future attorney from around the United States who share a common interest and a common curriculum for the summer. Friendships made during such a formative experience imbued this program with unique multidimensional networking value. Furthermore the connections available to the SCU Tokyo/Seoul program are truly unique and cannot be found elsewhere. My mentorship and large-firm training were high-quality and indispensable. I cannot recommend this program enough." J. Gabriel "Gabe" Ballard, SCU (2015)

“I finally got real, hands-on experience researching law, writing memos, and interacting with lawyers. I could not ask for a better experience.” Eric S., St. Mary’s SOL (2012)

“All of the professors were effective in communicating the concepts to the class.” Anonymous, Valparaiso Law School (2011)

“Getting to speak with a House of Rep congressman was highlight of my trip!” Anonymous, Santa Clara University (2011)

Contact Us

Tokyo Program Directors: Professor Donald Polden,
The Center for Global Law and Policy:

Tokyo, Japan Enrollment limit: 35

2018 Visual Dates

This program is currently not accepting applications.