Legal Counsel, Avanade Italy S.r.l.
Area of Practice: LL.M. U.S. Law & Policy
Year Graduated: 2015
Hometown: Milano, Italy
Undergraduate: Università degli Studi di Milano
In 2014, Licia Liguori arrived from Milan, Italy, a legal counsel for a multinational IT company and a desire to improve her understanding of U.S. intellectual property law.
One year later, she is headed back to Italy with an LL.M. from McGeorge School of Law-a crucial advantage that will help her excel in a global business environment.
"It was always a dream for me to have an American education," says Licia, 32, who graduated in May with an LL.M. in U.S. Public Law and Policy. "I feel more confident now in doing negotiations in America because I know the legal terms, I know how it all works-I know the system."
Licia is on leave as Legal Counsel for Avanade Italy S.r.l., a multinational IT provider subsidiary of Avanade Inc., a joint venture between Microsoft Corporation and Accenture LLP. She plans to return to her company and says that her McGeorge degree is an important career step.
"Avanade is an international company and there are plenty of opportunities in global teams, but if you want to advance you have to know American law. After all, we are a joint venture of American companies," says Licia. "I took all the intellectual property classes and now I have a strong background in this area, which is very important to have."
Her McGeorge degree is Licia's second LL.M.; in 2009 she graduated from the University of Valladolid School of Law, in Valladolid, Spain, with an LL.M. in Spanish Law. In 2008, Licia received her J.D. from the University of Milan-Bicocca, in Milan, Italy.
Licia applied to 10 U.S. universities and was accepted to all of them. She said she chose McGeorge for its national reputation among international law programs (U.S. News & World Report ranks the International Law program among the top 20 nationwide), its affordability, and its strategic location. Once Licia arrived on campus, she said she was impressed with the professors and the support system for international students.
"The faculty members here were fantastic, they helped me a lot," says Licia, who delivered her graduating class' LL.M commencement speech. "They were always available to talk with me during office hours, to give me all the explanations I needed. The professors here make the difference. They called you by name and they make you feel member of the University and not just an "international visitor". I've never met such amazing professors as I have here."