The 1997 agreement between the Republic of Latvia and the Kingdom of Sweden on the foundation of the Riga Graduate School of Law (RGSL) distinguishes the principle of internationalization of higher education, which has become a leading RGSL motive. RGSL employs competent and highly qualified teaching staff from Latvia as well as abroad. Currently students from 26 countries, including Latvia, are studying at RGSL. In line with the international agreement, the study process at RGSL is organized in English. The institution likewise implements international projects and attracts international financing; therefore, the English language is an important tool for achieving its aims.
Administrative procedures at RGSL are conducted mainly in Latvian; however, a portion of internal normative acts is translated into English in order to ensure that they can be understood by international students and teaching staff.
In view of Professor Mel Kenny’s professional expertise, research accomplishments, international profile and experience in teaching at foreign higher education establishments, the RGSL Constitutional Assembly unanimously approved his candidacy for the position of RGSL rector. Professor Kenny was director of the Centre for European Legal Studies at the prestigious University of Exeter Law School (UK). His academic experience has been highly valued at such universities as Leipzig, Bremen and Lucerne, where he has lectured in commercial law, consumer law and finance law. To fully prepare for his duties, starting from autumn 2016 professor Kenny was – and still is – studying Latvian. His candidacy will be put forward for approval of the Cabinet of Ministers upon reaching the necessary Latvian language proficiency level.
In light of RGSL’ s long-term experience with participation of foreign teaching staff in governing the institution, RGSL is willing to participate in a discussion on using foreign languages in Latvia’s higher education.