On Friday March 14 a group of 47 Maryland law students, faculty, alums and friends arrived in Beijing to spend their spring break traveling around China. I met the group at the airport along with our China tour guide Zhong Xin and my student assistant Huang Jing. We have been having a terrific time. On Friday we visited Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. The group then went off to the Summer Palace while one of the students and I watched the debut of Major League Baseball in China with the Padres playing the Dodgers in an exhibition game at Wukesong Stadium, where the Olympic baseball competition will be held in August. We rejoined the group for a Beijing duck dinner. On Saturday night I led a group of students on an expedition to the watering holes of Houhai Lake. On Sunday we went to the Great Wall and then returned to Beijing for a tour of a hutong and dinner in a courtyard house.
A group of my Chinese environmental law students joined the Maryland group for some of their tours. On Monday the Maryland students came to the China University of Political Science and Law, where I teach, for a special program. The Maryland students showed some of the films they made in my environmental law classes over the years. They discussed with my Chinese students how to do it since I am asking the Chinese students to make films as a class project this semester. We also held a demonstration moot court, using members of Maryland’s International Environmental Moot Court Competition, who were questioned by some of my Chinese law students serving as judges. On Tuesday afternoon, we put on a program at the U.S. Embassy where both Maryland and Chinese students heard from lawyers working with environmental NGOs. These included Alex Wang, director of NRDC’s Beijing office, Zhang Jingjing, litigation director of the Center for Legal Assistance to Pollution Victims, and David Lennett, an environmental consultant who works with a number of NGOs in China. Two U.S. law firms hosted receptions for the Maryland students at their Beijing offices - Hogan & Hartson on Monday and DLA Piper on Tuesday.
I have posted online a web gallery of photos from the trip, which is at: http://gallery.mac.com/rperci/100148. I also have posted a gallery of photos of Major League Baseball in China at: http://gallery.mac.com/rperci/100141.