Sean Ekhlas (LL.M. ’21) was living in Georgia when he decided more than a decade ago to move to Iran to be able to spend more time with his grandparents. His grandfather, who was an attorney himself, encouraged Ekhlas to also attend law school to continue their lineage of lawyers.
Ekhlas did just that. He earned his law degree in Iran and practiced in the country for about 10 years. He did a lot of pro bono work and focused on cases involving disputes. Once his grandparents passed, he decided it was time for him to move back to the United States, but he wasn’t ready to give up practicing law.
Ekhlas researched the options for LL.M. bar track programs that would help prepare him to get his license in the United States. He says it was clear from the moment he walked into the College of Law that it was a great fit for him. Here, he talks about why he knows he made the right choice in attending Georgia State Law and what his goals are after graduating.
What area of law are you interested in?
While I was still in Iran, I obtained an LL.M. in Intellectual Property law, but I have realized I am more interested in contracts. Not just regular contracts between a seller and a buyer. My interest is more into international and multinational contracts between companies doing business overseas. There are just so many different aspects such as jurisdictional and governing laws and dispute resolution. So, it’s just very interesting and there are so many factors that go into these big contracts so I would love to practice in this area.
What is your goal after graduating with your LL.M.?
I will complete my two-semester bar track LL.M. program in May and my plan at the moment is to stay in Atlanta and to expand my law connections. No matter how big people may think the law community is in Atlanta, it still is small and it’s very important to build up a good reputation and begin practicing at a firm as soon as I can. Ultimately, my goal is to have my own practice, no matter how big or small it is.
Are you happy with your decision to attend GSU Law?
Absolutely, for many reasons. The method of teaching, the interaction between the students and professors, and the amount of time they allocate for each student is amazing. As an individual student, I was able to get in touch with all my professors, they’re responsive and responsible. That support is fantastic.
Also, there is no doubt the curriculum at Georgia State Law comparative with other law schools is great. I don’t feel any different as an LL.M. student than a J.D. student. As far as the facilities and the opportunities provided to them, it is identical. So, I’m 100% sure that GSU helped me to achieve my goals and put me on the right track to the place that I am supposed to be.
Interview by Mara Thompson