Fordham Law

Leitner Center Establishes Clerkship Program for Ghana Supreme Court

April 08, 2008

Fordham Law’s Leitner Center has developed a judicial clerkship program for the Supreme Court in Ghana. Fordham Law Associate Clinical Professor Paolo Galizzi, director of Leitner’s Sustainable Development Legal Initiative (SDLI), led the development of the program and was present for the official launch at the Supreme Court in Accra, Ghana, on March 13.

The program will provide four Ghanaian lawyers a clerkship opportunity in which they will assist Justices at the Supreme Court in researching cases, drafting memoranda and court opinions, and verifying references and citations, as well as performing other administrative functions. After a review at the end of the first year, the clerks can be asked to continue their duties for one additional year.

“Ghana is a stable and in many ways a model democracy in West Africa, and Fordham Law is proud to assist its judicial service in creating opportunities for young Ghanaian graduates to assist the Justices at the Supreme Court in the delivery of high quality justice,” Galizzi said. “This program is part of the long-term partnership with the country that the Leitner Center has established over the years—one that is a mutually beneficial exchange dedicated to strengthening the rule of law to promote development and poverty eradication.”

To foster this partnership, Fordham Law will also be sending three of its own students to Ghana to work as interns in the Supreme Court over the summer. The first three students, selected among many highly qualified applicants, will begin the ten-week internship at the Supreme Court on June 2.

The development of the clerkship program was made possible by the support and encouragement of the co-directors of the Leitner Center, Tracy Higgins and Martin Flaherty, and facilitated by the Judicial Service of Ghana and in particular by the support of the Chief Justice of Ghana, Her Ladyship Georgina Theodora Wood, and the law faculty of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi, Ghana.

Contact: Steve Eichinger