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Debt’s Dominion: A History of Bankruptcy Law in America, an excerpt from a new book by Prof. David A. Skeel, Jr.

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“I was pleasantly surprised by the well-roundedness of the students and the different experiences they bring to class. In Torts there was a doctor who spoke about medical malpractice. In another class there was someone with a master’s degree in education and we had many discussions about different theories of education. Also, there were many people with experience in business and finance who were able to contribute a lot in corporations, for example.”

“Penn prepares students very well,” Sullivan continues. “Law has changed a lot in recent years. Penn had faculty and students in place who represented all fields of study.”

Sullivan plans to write his Ph.D. dissertation on issues of privacy generally. Law professors Stephen Perry and Anita Allen-Castellitto, whom he observes is “really wonderful – she knows everything about privacy and the law,” will serve on his dissertation committee along with Samuel Freeman, a member of the philosophy department who teaches at the Law School as well.

“I am really lucky to have a committee which consists of people who are the leaders in the field,” says Sullivan.

In the immediate future, he will clerk for the Honorable Anita B. Brody on the District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

John F. Oberdiek

Another J.D./Ph.D. Philosophy student is third-year student John F. Oberdiek.

“The prospect of pursuing a J.D. and a Ph.D. in Philosophy together was what most attracted me to Penn,” says Oberdiek. “It’s possible to pursue both degrees at a number of schools, but Penn’s is not an ad hoc joint program – the two sets of degree requirements dovetail.”

Before enrolling at Penn, Oberdiek studied Philosophy at Oxford University and New York University. He sought the Penn joint degree program because he thought a legal education would make him a more competent legal and political philosopher. He speaks with enthusiasm about the Penn faculty he has studied under.

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