Tuesday, July 3, 2018

In Memory of Teodor Taranu

I heard the tragic news that one of my students from ULIM has died -- the indomitable Teodor Taranu.

I loved every minute of my Fulbright in Moldova, especially because of my work with the law students at ULIM .  Teodor was smart, outspoken, bold. He always challenged me and questioned me - and made our seminars much more interesting and enjoyable.

 Later he welcomed my USFSP students in Chisinau when Larisa Patlis and I taught the joint study abroad course, connecting my Moldovan and Floridian students.

I am so sad that this bright light has been extinguished. He had so much to contribute to Moldova. My heart goes out to his family and friends.

Teodor's page in the Memory Book that my students presented to me
Teodor as an attorney arguing before the US Supreme Court (simulation in my US Constitutional Law course, held at the US Embassy's American Resource Center conference room)
after the US Senate Judiciary Supreme Court Confirmation Hearing simulation (held at ULIM), Teodor was the Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee
during our field trip to the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Moldova

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Athena Society -- International Women's Day Luncheon -- The Global Status of Women

I was delighted that the Honorable Betty Castor and Doris Weatherford invited me to participate in the Athena Society's International Women's Day Luncheon as a panelist to discuss my work in Moldova and in Macedonia.

There was only one problem, the luncheon was during my class period.  Thanks to the generosity of several Athena Society members, my students were sponsored and had the opportunity to attend the luncheon as well. Students were spread out among the tables - so each had the opportunity to learn more from the community leaders at their table as well as from the panelists.

 It was an honor to participate in the panel, moderated by historian Doris Weatherford.  The panelists included (as described in the program announcement):

"Nancy Natilson, a former banker, has worked on international projects for women since 1996.  Specializing in both microfinance and reproductive health, she has been a consultant on three continents with projects in Bosnia, El Salvador, Nicaragua, South Africa, Turkmenistan, Vietnam and more.

"Margaret “Peg” Ostrenko spent three years as a civilian contractor with the US Army in Iraq and the French army in Afghanistan. An expert in communication, Peg previously was employed by Bell South, the Miami Herald, and Tampa-area universities.

 and me -- Judithanne McLauchlan "a professor of political science at USF St. Petersburg and a Fulbright Scholar.  She’ll speak of her experience in two eastern European nations, the ancient nation of Macedonia and the former Soviet Republic of Moldova."

As you can see, the panelists were from different fields and covered many regions of the world. Together, we discussed "The Global Status of Women."

(For more about the Athena Society, see http://www.athena-society.com/)

In my brief remarks, I discussed the work that I did in Moldova and in Macedonia and provided a brief overview of the status of women in each country.

For more about my work during my Fulbright in Moldova, you can see my blog: http://jainmoldova.blogspot.com/

For one example of my work with students there, see this post about one of the campaign commercials a group of my women students produced in my campaigns workshop:

You can also see my USF students visiting the only shelter for survivors of domestic violence in Moldova (during my 2013 Study Abroad course) here:

For more about my work in Macedonia, see my blog: http://jainmacedonia.blogspot.mk/

For more about the work of students in my "Democracy and Civil Society" class at the University of Tetovo, including with Peace Corps Volunteer Maria and her colleagues at Forumi Gruas, the women's legal clinic - as well as events we organized together with Zonta Macdonia and Zonta Pinellas to raise awareness of the need to Say No to Violence Against Women, see

I also announced our upcoming event for International Women's Day -- featuring law professor from Macedonia

See http://jainmacedonia.blogspot.mk/2018/04/usfsp-womens-herstory-month-event_5.html

Members of the Athena Society greeted the students before the meeting began

Doris Weatherford, signing one of her may books about women in politics
Students in  my Women and the Law class read excerpts of Doris Weatherford's book about the Women's Suffrage Movement. Too bad we did not have longer for a mini-lecture or an "author meets critic" session

After the luncheon, we met as a  seminar and discussed students' progress with their research posters for our USFSP Women's HERStory Month event.  We were delighted that we had the opportunity to meet the Honorable Alex Sink

Sunday, December 17, 2017

In Memory of Rector Andrei Gallben, ULIM

I was so saddened to hear the news today that Rector Andrei Galben of ULIM has passed away.

The Rector was the Founder of ULIM, the first private university in Moldova.  This is the university where I was placed during my Fulbright  in Fall 2010 - and with which I have cooperated on may programs and activities since, including a joint study abroad course with my ULIM colleague Larisa Patlis. 

Rector Galben was a true visionary-- under his leadership he and colleagues at ULIM were able to achieve extraordinary things.  I especially admired his passion for international cooperation.

From our first official meeting, which happened to be on my birthday - and his! - when he officially welcomed me (and presented me with a bottle of my (now favorite) Transnistrian cognac -- to all of the meetings since -- Rector Galben earned my highest respect and admiration. Thank you so much for the opportunity to work with you and colleague at ULIM.  What a legacy!

From the ULIM website  http://www.ulim.md/news/

Comunitatea academică ULIM în doliu
A trecut la cele veșnice rectorul Andrei Galben

Cu profundă durere în suflete, anunțăm decesul rectorului Andrei Galben, după o scurtă și grea suferință, care s-a produs în seara zilei de sâmbătă, 16 decembrie 2017. Comunitatea academică a Universității Libere Internaționale din Moldova exprimă sincere condoleanțe și întreaga compasiune familiei și rudelor regretatei noastre personalități. De azi, 17 decembrie - până duminica, 24 decembrie, anunțăm o săptămână de doliu, la ULIM, ca urmare a trecerii la cele veșnice a lui Andrei Galben, rectorul și fondatorul instituției noastre.

Regretatul nostru rector, Andrei Galben, a fost o personalitate academică de primă importanță pentru R. Moldova, care a contribuit esențial la educarea multor generații de tineri prin modernizarea permanentă a învățământului superior. Mii de absolvenți îi datorează recunoștință pentru fondarea unei universități de importanță internațională, că au putut să beneficieze de condiții europene și oportunități educaționale în cunoscute centre academice ale lumii.
Dumnezeu să-l odihnească în pace!
Serviciul de Marketing și Comunicare, ULIM

A few pictures (from my blog) posted in memory of Rector Galben:

Rector Galben presenting me with a "Diploma of Excellence"  towards the end of my Fulbright


On my Returning Fulbright Award in 2012, meeting with the Rector to discuss plans for future cooperation, including the Joint USFSP-ULIM course planned for Spring 2013:


 More about the USFSP-ULIM Joint Study Abroad Course:


For an article written with Larisa Patlis about the Joint Course:

"Cultivating Global Citizenship in Higher Education: Civic Engagement and Service Learning in Joint Study Abroad Courses"

 See here for more about my tour of KVINT cognac in Tiraspol, see tour part 1 ,tour part 2 ,tour part 3

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

USFSP International Month Program: Moldova

On Monday, November 14, I made a presentation at USFSP's Poynter Corner (at the Poynter Library) to discuss MOLDOVA -- specifically my Fulbright research project regarding the impact of decisions of the European Court of Human Rights on legal and judicial reform in the Republic of Moldova.

Many weeks ago, when we planned the date for this event, we did not know that this event would come the morning after the Moldovan Presidential Election Run-Off.  Timely!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Fulbright Welcome Reception at USF Patel Center

On Friday, September 16 I took part in the 3rd Annual Fulbright Welcome Reception hosted at the USF Patel Center for Global Solutions. 

It was wonderful meeting the incoming Fulbrighters who will be spending time conducting research in central Florida, many at US and to meet those who will be going on Fulbrights abroad. I was delighted to announce that I will be heading to Macedonia next year!

There was also a poster presentation during the reception, so I presented my poster "Cultivating Global Citizenship in Higher Education: Civic Engagement and Service Learning in Joint Study Abroad Courses," in which Larisa Patlis and I discuss our Moldova Study Abroad course. 

Monday, July 18, 2016

USFSP article about participation in European Society for Comparative Legal History conference in Gdansk


Dr. Judithanne Scourfield McLauchlan, associate professor of Political Science, recently presented her research about human rights on legal and judicial reform in Moldova at the European Society for Comparative Legal History Biennial Conference (ESCLH) in Gdansk, Poland. It was there that she also had the opportunity to meet former Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski and former Polish Constitutional Tribunal Justice Ewa Letowska.

“The ESCLH is the premier organization that brings together scholars of comparative legal history,” said McLauchlan, who served as a Fulbright scholar to the Republic of Moldova in 2010 and 2012, and returned to teach an Education Abroad course in 2013. McLauchlan began researching and collecting data while in Moldova. “The theme of this year’s conference was ‘Culture, Identity and Legal Instrumentalism,’ and, of course, my research regarding Moldova fit well within this theme.”

As the place where the first shots were fired during World War II—and the birthplace of the Solidarity movement that helped bring an end to the Community rule across Central Europe—Gdansk has a rich 1,000 year history and is a city situated at the intersection of cultures and nationalities.
“I find Moldova to be endlessly fascinating,” said McLauchlan, who described the landlocked country as a study of contrasts. “Moldova is torn between its Soviet past and its European future with an uncertain present, making it a profoundly interesting state to study.”

Her paper assesses the impact of decisions made by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) on legal and judicial reform in Moldova. She reviewed the court’s judgments and corresponding reports from 1997 through 2014, and also interviewed more than 25 lawyers, judges, and human rights advocates, including the president of the Supreme Court of Justice (and former judge on the European Court of Human Rights), the vice minister of justice of the Republic of Moldova, and the Moldovan government agent before the European Court of Human Rights.

“I hope my findings will offer insights into the constraints faced by the ECtHR in implementing its decisions and the impact of the ECtHR on national legal systems, as well as contribute to the conference focus on the issue of law as an instrument of transforming reality,” McLauchlan said.

“This underscores once again that Dr. Judithanne Scourfield McLauchlan has, through her years of focused scholarship, become a leading international voice and expert on the import and role of Moldova in the complex puzzle of geopolitics” said Dr. Frank Biafora, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. “As Dean, I also commend Judithanne for always seeking ways to provide meaningful and relevant opportunities for USFSP students to benefit from her leadership and primary research.”

Her trip is supported by a Faculty International Travel Grant from the USF System.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

European Society for Comparative Legal History Conference: University of Gdansk, Moldova presentation

Day 4 of the European Society of Comparative Legal History conference was held at the University of Gdansk at the law school.

They must have saved the proverbial best for last, as my panel and the panel I was chairing were scheduled for the final day of the conference.

My presentation was part of a panel, "Law, Human Rights, and Democracy" -- and I presented my research

"The Impact of Decisions of the European Court of Human Rights on Legal and Judicial Reform in the Republic of Moldova"

I chaired a panel "Institutions and Politics," that included research paper presentations by scholars from Australia, Brazil, and Thailand.

After the final panel, buses took us back to the Old Town.  I changed and then went exploring myself.  Will post separately pics of the Post Office where the first shots of World War II were fired and my climb to the top of Europe's largest brick cathedral in a separate post.

the law professor who chaired my panel brought his copy of the Moldovan Constitution (in Polish) for our discusion

Here I am as Chair of final panel at the conference

in the atrium of the law school at the University of Gdansk

with the conference organizers EXTRAORDINAIRE!!  Anna Klimaszewska, Michal Galedek, and Maria Lewandowicz

as I was exploring the Old Town I was delighted to run into scholars from the conference - from Russia, Brazil (now Portugal), Poland, Germany (now Belgium), and Finland

I didn't take many food pictures on this trip, but this is a traditional Polish soup zurek (sausages and eggs)

Lech Walesa has an office in this building, and it is said that he occasionally will come out to greet visitors

Good Bye, Gdansk! What a wonderful conference.

At the Warsaw airport on the layover - took pictures of McDs signs in Polish for my daughter

found Dory in Polish in the In Flight magazine