Typically, the month before graduation from law school, most students are thinking about final exams and graduation ceremonies while anticipating preparation for the bar exam – but not Regent University School of Law students Chelsea Mack and Natasha Delille. From April 15-23, these two third-year law students participated in – and won first place – at the Third Annual Ukrainian Student Summit held at the Dnipropetrovsk State University of Internal Affairs.
This year’s competition consisted of 22 teams from Ukraine, Poland, Romania and the United States. In keeping with the summit’s goal of proposing ideas for encouraging the development and sustainability of democracy, each team was tasked with creating a presentation addressing “The Challenge to Democracy in Increasing Globalization.”
Mack and Delille’s presentation addressed the topic of judicial reform, outlining ideas for how Ukraine could develop and improve democracy in Ukraine. Their unique presentation featured video interviews with two Regent students from Ukraine.
“We wanted to use our presentation to restore hope amongst Ukrainians [and] communicate that corruption is an issue that can only be solved by first changing the hearts of the people,” Delille explained. “We wanted to show the Ukrainians in attendance that we genuinely cared about the success of their nation.”
In addition to their presentation, the students also spent two days traveling to five different law schools and venues in Ukraine, alongside Regent Law Associate Professor James Davids. “Many students were fascinated [with the idea] that Christian principles could be intertwined into a national system of law and structure,” Mack recalled after the summit. “I was reminded during this trip that there are nations—including developed nations—who are in the midst of searching for a secure foundation to base their legal and political systems on.”
The two law students were first made aware of the opportunity to participate in the summit by Davids, who invited students throughout the law school to compete for two slots to accompany him abroad. “For several years, Regent Law has purposely provided its students with global opportunities to serve,” Davids explained. “These opportunities have broadened students’ perception of life and how law can—and should—serve societies.”
Now that they have graduated, both Mack and Delille are hard at work studying for the bar exam, but their experiences in Ukraine have made them eager to get to work on the international stage.
“Participating in the competition will demonstrate to prospective employers the gravity of our intent to work internationally,” Delille said. “It will also reflect our ability to communicate legal concepts across borders.”