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James Buikema

What event did you attend?

I attended the National Christian Legal Society Conference.

Where was the event located?

This event was located in Boston, MA.

What happened at the event?

The National Christian Legal Society conference had about two hundred attorneys and eighty to ninety law students in attendance. There were speakers that presented on general topics of Christianity in the law, and also break-out workshops that dealt with more specific issues.

What was the most interesting part of the event?

The most interesting part of this trip for me was having lunch with the founder of Christian Legal Society, Henry Brinks. It was cool to hear why he formed the group in 1961, and also his prospective of what should be the future of the organization. Along with meeting Mr. Brinks for lunch, I was able to connect with quite a few attorneys from the Chicago area.

What is a new or emerging topic that you learned about? 

One of the workshops I went to was about international human trafficking. The presenter represented a non-profit organization called International Justice Mission (IJM). Human trafficking definitely isn’t an emerging topic, but it was a new topic for me, and I learned a lot about different legal issues surrounding trafficking. IJM works with governments abroad with the goal being to end human trafficking.

How did the event impact you personally? 

The conference made a huge impact on me professionally. One concern I had coming to law school was how to grow in my faith during law school, and how to integrate my faith and being a lawyer. This conference opened my eyes up to what kind of projects Christian lawyers work on, and even if it isn’t a Christian legal issue, how Christian lawyers mesh their faith and their work together. I also had the opportunity to meet a lot of other Christian law students from across the nation.

Would you recommend this event to other students? If so, why? 

I would highly recommend other students to go to the national conference because it brings together students and practicing attorneys, which is extremely encouraging. It also has wonderful learning sessions about different aspects of the law that students might not otherwise be exposed to.

This interview was conducted in Spring 2015.

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