China Program

China Program Students and Professor at the Forbidden City


Thomas Jefferson School of Law, in cooperation with one of the most prestigious universities in China, Zhejiang University, presents a three week, ABA approved, International and Comparative Law Study Abroad Program in Hangzhou, China.

Classes are held in the mornings only, Monday through Friday, in the Zhejiang University Guanghua College of Law. This is the tenth year of this exceptional program located in one of the most beautiful cities in China and near the famous West Lake. Zhejiang University Guanghua College of Law offers an ideal environment for learning international and comparative law. The China Program is designed to encourage students to experience international law in an international setting, to exchange ideas with students from a different land, and to explore cultural differences that influence international business and legal transactions. Limited internships may be available while in China for the program.

Chinese students fluent in English and currently studying law at the Zhejiang University Guanghua College of Law will actively participate in the program. Four Chinese professors will be teaching a course on the Chinese Legal System and Its Reforms in English. In 2017, 39 students attended the China Program, including 29 American students and 10 students from the Zhejiang University Guanghua Law School. The participation of Chinese students from the Zhejiang University Guanghua College of Law in each of the five courses offered is an important feature of this program.

China Program activities include: a half-day tour of Hangzhou with a cruise on Westlake; an Orientation for students and faculty; a day in the Chinese Supreme Court in Beijing with discussions about the differences between Chinese and U.S. court procedures; a Brown-bag Luncheon Lecture Series featuring law professors, judges, practitioners and experts in international law; optional organized weekend trips to other cities in China, including Beijing and Shanghai; optional half-day trips to neighboring scenic sites; and other educational and social events.


Hangzhou is located in Southeast China, less than one hour (l50 kilometers) away from Shanghai, the famous, bustling metropolis that is well-known for its shopping and business opportunities. Visitors to China invariably comment about the extraordinary beauty of Hangzhou. Marco Polo, the noted Italian traveler in the l3th century, described Hangzhou as “the most beautiful and luxurious city in the world.”

Hangzhou is the capital of Zhejiang Province and is full of history, art and tourist attractions. Hangzhou is a scenic delight dominated by the famous West Lake – a favorite spot for honeymooners and romantics. West Lake is a classic example of a traditional Chinese landscape. The lake is lush with natural beauty, elegance and harmony associated with the Chinese culture. West Lake offers luxuriant weeping willows, serenely scented temples and pagodas, art treasures, and numerous ideal spots for relaxation.