Assistant Dean of International Programs Travels the World to Promote Global Relationships with Syracuse Law

Andrew Horsfall speaks with Arlene Kanter in a bright classroom

Assistant Dean of International Programs at the College of Law Andrew Horsfall ’05, L’10 has a career that has put him all over the map. Most recently his travels have taken him to London, Poland, and Switzerland, but the stamps in his passport are too numerous to count.

Horsfall’s journey with Syracuse University began as an undergraduate at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and government with a minor in French and Francophone studies. After graduating, he went to work as an admissions counselor for Syracuse Abroad, helping undergraduates spend a semester in another country, while also supporting Syracuse Law’s summer externship program in London (now referred to as LondonEx). In hindsight, he sees that this first foray helped him understand how international higher education could become a profession he might enjoy.

Horsfall in London with JDi students
Andrew Horsfall with JDi students in London during the Comparative Trial Advocacy course in 2023.

But first, he decided to become a lawyer, earning his J.D. from Syracuse Law in 2010 and becoming a practicing attorney with Smith, Sovik, Kendrick & Sugnet P.C., in Syracuse. After a few years, however, another opportunity surfaced. “At the time, I wasn’t sure I would transition out of private practice altogether, but Syracuse Law had very recently launched its LL.M. program and was looking for someone to develop it who had familiarity with international higher education, legal education, and legal practice,” says Horsfall. “My experience brought together all of these, and I found myself in the right place at the right time.”

“The great diversity of students the program has attracted has led to a more vibrant and rich program for Syracuse Law. Faculty and students regularly interact with LL.M. students who are academics, judges, and lawyers of varied expertise.”

Andrew Horsfall ’05, L’10

Twelve years later, he has led the development of a robust portfolio of international programs that have allowed foreign-educated lawyers, academics, and judges to earn an LL.M. or Doctor of Juridical Science (S.J.D.); expanded the LondonEx program and short-term study abroad opportunities in several other countries; built strong partnerships with dozens of foreign governments, sponsoring organizations, NGOs, private organizations and global universities to support enrollment in the Syracuse LL.M. program; and fostered academic partnerships, created recruitment strategies for prospective student exchanges and managed programs that welcome visiting scholars and semester exchange students. In turn, these international relationships have also allowed Syracuse Law faculty and students to benefit from many of these programs and experiences, as well as represent the College at recruitment events, conferences and speaking engagements around the globe.

LL.M. students pose in their caps and gowns during commencement in 2024
Syracuse University College of Law LL.M. Class of 2024

The LL.M. program in 2012 started with just two students from South Korea and Sierra Leone but has since built itself into a program that welcomes 30-40 students each year from disparate corners of the globe.

“The great diversity of students the program has attracted has led to a more vibrant and rich program for Syracuse Law,” Horsfall explains. “Faculty and students regularly interact with LL.M. students who are academics, judges, and lawyers of varied expertise.”

LL.M. Students in a classroom at Orientation
The LL.M. class at orientation in August of 2023.

Horsfall has worked diligently to build pathways for students from various countries and cultivate routes to Syracuse Law on a regular basis through in-country visits by him and others at the College of Law. “The cultivation of relationships and development of new partnerships takes consistent effort that is well worth it. It can take months, if not years, to see ideas for collaboration culminate in a new project or the mobility of students or faculty, but the rewards are invaluable to everyone involved,” he says. “Facilitating the exchange of ideas, the exposure to otherness, and the widening of perspectives and opportunities to learn from one another are my core drivers.”

Currently, Syracuse Law has a number of Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) with foreign law schools (see sidebar). Horsfall’s intention is that these MOUs don’t only bring students to Syracuse Law but also create valuable partnerships that foster the exchange of researchers and professors as visiting scholars to collaborate on projects, lecture to students and faculty, and explore new ways of working together. He says support among faculty, which is high at Syracuse Law, through their own relationships and referrals from abroad are also key to success. See Syracuse Law’s thriving partnership with Poland’s University of Bialystok.

Andrew Horsfall, Dean dr hab. Mariusz Popławski and Craig Boise pose for a photo
Andrew Horsfall, University of Bialystok Dean dr hab. Mariusz Popławski and Craig Boise pose for a photo during a visit to the University of Bialystok in spring 2024.

While Horsfall oversees these international initiatives, he is quick to praise faculty colleagues and staff in the Office of International Programs. “Most of these accomplishments would not have been possible without the team effort among various faculty and staff who understand and support the mission of the Office,” he says.

However, most at the law school give Horsfall a tremendous amount of credit for growing the program to its current popularity, as well as continually looking for other opportunities to make Syracuse Law’s international connections even more robust.

“I don’t think you can talk about the success of our international programs without talking about Andrew’s contributions,” says Shannon Gardner, teaching professor and associate dean of online education. “He has been a part of this growing initiative to bring foreign students and professors here, while also finding ways to send others to various countries, which is beneficial in every way. Part of our success at Syracuse Law is the richness and diversity that these programs bring to our school and our students, which makes for an extraordinary law school experience.”