In 2021, Shane Cooper joined UNH Franklin Pierce as the Associate Dean for Administration and Enrolment.
The move to UNH Franklin Pierce came after nearly three decades in the US Navy, where he was a submarine officer and then Navy Judge Advocate. With a law degree from Cornell Law School and an LLM from Columbia, Dean Cooper brings along a wealth of experience and management skills to the law school.
In October this year, Dean Cooper will be visiting India, visiting several law schools on a week-long trip. In this interview, we sit down with Dean Cooper to understand the whys and how’s of the India trip, what Indian applicants can expect from the UNH Franklin Pierce LLM experience, and a whole lot more.
Have you been to India before? Is there any one thing in particular that you are most looking forward to?
No, this will be my first visit! I am very excited about the opportunity to visit India!
I am most looking forward to connecting with the people and prospective students in particular. I have had so many positive interactions with the students from India who have attended our programs at UNH Franklin Pierce.
This will be an incredible opportunity to see the country of India, visit various law schools, and meet prospective students so I can get a better understanding of our students’ backgrounds and situations as I work with students from India in the future.
What can Indian law students and lawyers expect from your rather whirlwind tour of India? What would be the profile of attendees you are hoping to reach out to?
I am happy to explore the possibilities with them and why they would want to pursue an LLM, JD, or Master’s degree with us to advance their professional and personal goals. I think it is also a chance for LLM applicants to get a better sense of how we function and the kind of applicants we are looking for.
Also, for those students who are going to need financial aid, this is a great opportunity to meet and have your profile assessed. In partnership with Royzz & Co. Law Firm, we even offer a special International Student Scholarship for one student from India enrolling in our LLM or Master’s in Intellectual Property program.
One of the reasons that got you to UNH Franklin Pierce was your desire to work for a cause that is greater than just one individual - how would you describe the "cause" that drives UNH Franklin Pierce?
Our law school’s mission is dedicated to promoting a community of scholars, oriented toward the practice of law, who teach, learn, and empower others to contribute productively to a global legal system.
I view our goal at the law school as educators to provide our students with the best possible legal education and draw in a diverse group of students from all over the world. In this way, we believe that our graduates will be empowered with their specialized legal knowledge to contribute positively to society in their areas of expertise such as intellectual property or commerce and technology law which will drive innovation, economic growth, and prosperity to society.
In the same podcast, you recounted how law school changed the way you thought - could you give me an example of two from your own experience? And how does UNH Franklin Pierce encourage these changes for their LLM graduates?
I recall that law school provided me with exposure to diverse points of view and introduced to me real-world challenges that law could play a role in helping to shape or solve.
For example, I served in a law school clinic where we helped low-income residents with their landlord-tenant issues and claims for government benefits. It exposed me to the idea of how knowledge of the law and advocating for others who needed a voice to help them could make a profound impact on a person’s and their family’s life.
In another example, I recall working through trial advocacy classes where we were routinely asked to switch sides on the same issue and it introduced me to the idea of flexibly thinking about an issue from all perspectives without being too fixed on one specific point of view.
This is an extremely valuable tool that has helped me navigate so many problems and chart out possible solutions.
At UNH Franklin Pierce, we offer these experiences to our LLM students by their exposure to competing ideas and offer them practical opportunities to work through legal issues and problems whether that is in the classroom, extracurricular activities, our clinics, or follow-on practical training after their studies.
You also worked at the Naval Justice School, an organization that essentially trains all attorneys in the JAG Corps - are there any best practices learned here that you wish to bring to UNH Franklin Pierce?
Yes. At Naval Justice School, we focused on practice-based experiences to help train our attorneys to be ready to work with clients and leaders immediately upon graduation.
What I appreciate about UNH Franklin Pierce and hope to build upon is our law school’s focus on preparing our students to be practice-ready attorneys as soon as they graduate.
In case prospective LLM applicants want to set up a one-on-one session with you during your India visit, how can they go about doing this?
I will be happy to be available at the hotel following our day’s events and will hold meet and great opportunities in each city.
I will be at the ITC Maurya in Delhi on Tuesday, October 3 from 6:30-8:30 pm, at the ITC Windsor in Bangalore on Thursday, October 5 from 6:00-8:00 pm, and at ITC Kohenur in Hyderabad on Saturday, October 7 from 6:30-8:30 pm.
Please Register here
If you can’t make it to one of these locations, you can also register for a virtual meeting with my colleagues back in New Hampshire or contact us via WhatsApp at +1-603-513-5300 to schedule a meeting. We hope to hear from you, and I look forward to meeting with you soon!