Visiting Fulbright Scholar was inspired by Professor McCaffrey, whom she met in Moldova in 2005
Aliona Cara (shown left with Professor Angela McCaffrey), a Fulbright scholar and law professor from Moldova, is spending the 2007-08 academic year at Hamline University School of Law. She's learning teaching methods by observing Hamline law faculty in action, as well as doing research in the area of human trafficking for her Ph.D. Aliona's informal relationship with Hamline began in 2005 when she met Professor Angie McCaffrey, who traveled to Moldova, a small country located between Romania and Ukraine, as part of a legal educators exchange. The two stayed in touch, making the decision to study and do research at Hamline University School of Law an easy one for Aliona. "I was so impressed with Professor McCaffrey and I wanted to come to Hamline to learn from her and others on the faculty. I can see how the faculty really cares about students and works hard to make sure they are learning," she said.
Professor McCaffrey said, "I am very excited that Professor Aliona Cara is pursing her Fullbright studies here at Hamline. She has been a leader in issues of human trafficking in Moldova and is doing comparative studies of how other countries approach this difficult issue while here at Hamline. She is also taking classes and learning about American teaching methods at Hamline. When Professor Ann Juergens and I were in Moldova we introduced the concept of interactive teaching methods in her class. Classes in Moldova were at the time taught only in the lecture model. Professor Cara was very excited about the ideas for new teaching methods and developed a hypothetical while we were in Moldova to use in her class."
Aliona plans to share the teaching methods she observes to her colleagues at the University of Chisinau, where she teaches in the law school and is head of the English Department. With the growth of privatization in Moldova, which declared its independence from the former Soviet Union in 1991, has come a desire for new teaching methods in the law schools. In a private market, attorneys need critical thinking skills, interviewing skills, litigation skills and mediation skills.