A Christmassy night in La Défense

One of the many traditions at the “Grande Ecole du Droit” alongside September’s Welcome Presentation is the annual Christmas Party taking place at EY Law Firm’s headquarters in La Défense. Each year, the Christmas Party gathers all generations of the Grande Ecole du Droit’s students, as well as the program’s teachers and partners for a festive evening. The event is always a treat for the students after the first semester’s exams and a pleasant occasion to get together before the winter break. Unlike every previous Christmas Parties usually organized by the program’s founders Pr. Véronique Magnier and Me. Stéphane Baller, this year’s event was in the hands of motivated 2nd and 3rd year students. The main goal for us was to freshen up this traditional event as well as keep it entertaining for the audience. Challenge accepted.

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©Christophe Rabinovici

We decided to highlight the GED’s achievements in 2016 and thus, make it fully reflect on what has been a productive and innovative year. In fact, as well as being a perfect way to underline this year’s major events, choosing a retrospective dynamic for the evening allowed new students and alumni to catch a glimpse of the latest commitments of the student’s association, AEGED.

We first started our retrospective with the « Oral’s day », an innovation of the association which was set up in 2016. Among 1800 candidates and 150 eligible students, 30 would become the lucky ones and enter the GED, thanks to the four 2nd year students who organized this selection day. The purpose of the oral’s day, beyond recruiting interesting profiles, was getting to know those we would potentially “share our lives with” for the next couple of years.

From future GED students to freshly graduated ones, another novelty we decided to cast a light on that evening was the Graduation Ceremony. Indeed, this significant event was a key moment in the alumni’s lives: this never-done before ceremony meant a lot for former LL.M students as Locif Choulak recalled in his testimony. We looked back at the first ever ceremony of this kind at the GED as a rewarding night for those who successfully completed their LL.M and had just come back from their foreign universities all over the world.

During the event, we also wanted to present some students’ collaboration with TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL FRANCE which is part of TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL, a worldwide movement driven by one vision: a world where States, firms, civil societies and individuals in their everyday life won’t be affected by any kind of corruption anymore. This mission was achieved by a group of dedicated students thanks to the legal clinic of Paris Saclay created by Pr. Magnier.

Therefore, not only was it an opportunity to shine the light on some of the GED’s most impressive work throughout the past year, but it was also a way to look into the program’s near future and upcoming projects.

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©Christophe Rabinovici

One of the major innovations this year alongside the “Oral’s day” is the AEGED mobile phone application. Created by 1st year student Benjamin Rathelot, the app allows us to have a quick overview of the association’s ongoing missions and coming events and is meant to ease our everyday access to crucial information. When introducing his creation to the audience at the Christmas party, Benjamin shared his desire to further the GED’s digital revolution and expand its visibility through innovative initiatives.

The association also has many projects for 2017 as Me. Baller mentioned in his closing intervention, starting with the exportation of some activities of the AEGED such as the methodological guidebook to write a dissertation and many more projects to come. But one prominent event that was announced by Me. Baller that night was our all new partnership with the European Companies Legal Association French Chapter (http://www.ecla.org/)

Thanks to such a significant event we were once again proven that being part of the Grande Ecole du Droit is an exciting and rewarding adventure. We are very thankful for EY Law Firm to have considerably helped in the process of organizing the 2016 Christmas Party and look forward to the next one to be an ever more innovative and full of surprises event!

Camille Collos and Flora Merret