LL.M. Profile: Ana Paula de Barros (LL.M. ‘17)

Photo of Ana Paula de Barros (LL.M '17) posing in the Law Commons

Ana Paula de Barros (LL.M '17)

Wake Forest Law welcomed Ana Paula de Barros (LL.M. ‘17) with open arms. Originally from Brazil, de Barros knew she wanted to pursue an LL.M. in the United States, and for her, Wake Forest Law turned out to be the perfect fit.

“Several people in the U.S. had told me about the quality of Wake Forest School of Law,” de Barros said. “I was attracted to the small program where we have the opportunity to foster close relationships with professors and deans of the university. For me, relationships matter.”

After working for eight years as a litigation associate at a Brazilian law firm, she knew that the LL.M. degree would be highly valued in Brazil and help her to grow professionally. She learned of Wake Forest Law in an LL.M. guide, and made the decision to join the program.

“I felt very welcome,” de Barros said. “We all felt a little insecure at the beginning of the course, but the professors and director of International Programs gave us the support and confidence to stay strong.”

While at Wake Forest Law, she has been proactive in getting to know her American classmates.

“I think we can learn a lot from the experience of being in the same classroom as all American students, because it really pushes us to work harder.”

De Barros says she enjoyed her International Business Transactions class with Associate Dean Of International Affairs Dick Schneider because she was exposed to real-life transactional situations. She also enjoyed the out-of-class negotiation cases in her negotiation class with Professor Ralph Peeples. The LL.M. program provides her with the skills needed for International Business Transaction and Dispute Resolution, according to de Barros.

“We live in a globalized world, so the more we know about other legal systems, the better prepared we are to deal with the needs and interests of our clients,” she said. “The biggest benefit of earning an LL.M. is the whole experience, like networking and learning new topics of law. The whole experience makes us better professionals, more creative when finding a solution and stronger to face challenges in our daily lives.”

Following graduation in May, de Barros says she hopes to find a job with a U.S. law firm or corporation.