The Graduate Law Students Association (GLSA) represents all students enrolled in the Graduate Program at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. The object of the GLSA is to assist graduate students in their dealings with the Faculty and to obtain representation for students on various committees and organizations that pertain to the graduate law program. The GLSA strives to encourage and facilitate co-operation and understanding among students and faculty in order to improve the research activities and educational experiences of all graduate law students at the University of Toronto.

See also the Graduate Law Students Association website.

Graduate Program Annual Fund

The Faculty of Law has set up a Graduate Program Annual Fund to support graduate student programs and initiatives.

GLSA Executive Committee

President: Nicola Alexander (GPLLM) - nicola.alexander@mail.utoronto.ca

Vice President: Hyunju Park (Crystal) (GPLLM) - hyunju.park@mail.utoronto.ca

Treasurer: Wanessa Santana de Oliveira (GPLLM) - w.oliveira@mail.utoronto.ca

Director of Communications: Daniel Escudero (GPLLM) - daniel.escudero@mail.utoronto.ca

Social Affairs Officers: Muhammad Talal Khan (GPLLM) - mtfi.khan@mail.utoronto.ca, Ansshita Varshney (GPLLM) - anshita.varshney@mail.utoronto.ca

LLM Representative: Andrew Patel (LLM) - andrew.patel@mail.utoronto.ca

SJD Representative: Michaël Lessard (SJD) - michael.lessard@mail.utoronto.ca

GPLLM Representative: Ann Gardhouse (GPLLM) - ak.gardhouse@mail.utoronto.ca

GSU Rep: Carlos Vera de Freites (GPLLM) - carlos.vera@mail.utoronto.ca

Faculty Committees

GLSA Constitution

You can look at the GLSA Constitution (PDF file)

GLSA Guide

GLSA Guide for Incoming Graduate Students (PDF)

Executive Committee profiles

President – Nicola Alexander (GPLLM)

Nicola Alexander is enrolled in the Global Professional Law Master’s Program at the University of Toronto and is the current President of the GLSA. A former Business Executive in Banking, Energy and Technology, she spent the last twelve years in various Senior Management positions. An exceptional leader and mentor, she works with emerging leaders on personal development training, public outreach, and fundraising initiatives. Among her peers and business partners, she is respected for her uncanny ability to take her audience to a higher level of lateral thinking. Throughout her career, Nicola has demonstrated the qualities needed for success: A Passion for the job, a high level of effectiveness and resiliency- she is strategic, decisive and focused.

Vice President - Hyunju Park (Crystal) (GPLLM)

Hyunju Park (Crystal) is the Vice President of the GLSA and a GPLLM candidate at the University of Toronto. She holds an LL.M. in International Business Law from the University of Macau and an LL.B. from Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea. At UM, she was the founding President of the International Law Society, which was established with the vision of becoming a legal sandbox and a platform for students to network, share ideas, and prepare for international moot court competitions. Crystal is a two-time participant of the International Rounds of the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition held in Washington D.C., USA. Before coming to Toronto, Crystal was a Category Manager for IT Procurement at the Galaxy Entertainment Group, the highest-grossing casino in the world. She managed the strategic sourcing of IT equipment, IT infrastructure, integral systems required in the Hospitality/Gaming industry, and services contracts. Crystal speaks four languages, and in her spare time, she likes to train for marathons and practice Ashtanga yoga.

Director of Communications – Daniel Escudero (GPLLM)

Daniel is the Director of Communications of the GLSA and a GPLLM candidate. Before coming to the University of Toronto, he completed his LL.B at the University of Southampton in 2019 in the United Kingdom. Daniel also holds a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Political Science from York University and Double Master Degree Policing, Intelligence, Counter-Terrorism and International Security Studies from Macquarie University. He also worked for Southern Health National Health Service Foundation Trust as a Mental Health Act Review Manager chairing tribunal hearings on behalf of the Trust to determine if a patient should be retained or discharged from hospital care under the Mental Health Act 1983 and its Code of Practice. Daniel currently works for Pro Bono Students Canada University of Toronto Chapter in the Family Law Project assisting unrepresented clients draft court documents and provide legal information, including applying for custody, access, child support, filing motions, and drafting court orders.

Treasurer - Wanessa Santana de Oliveira (GPLLM)

Wanessa Santana de Oliveira is the Treasurer of the GLSA and is currently a full-time student and candidate of the GPLLM - Innovation, Technology & Law stream. She holds an LL.B and Civil Law Specialization from the University of Londrina, Brazil. Wanessa is a young lawyer accredited in Brazil and has professional experience working with corporate law, mergers & acquisitions and real estate at renowned law firms in Brazil. She is an AIESEC alumnus and has been involved as a collaborator of the graduate student board during law school. At the University of Toronto, she is focusing her studies on the impact of technology on lawyer's careers and on innovative methodologies that could be used to leverage from technology.

Social Affairs – Muhammad Talal Khan (GPLLM)

Muhammad Talal Khan is a GPLLM candidate and the Social Affairs Rep. Talal has a BA from the University of Waterloo after which he obtained a Graduate LLB from BPP University College in London. Talal previously worked for a Middle East IP boutique firm before obtaining an LLM from George Washington University. Talal specializes in IP, Anti-trust, technology and data privacy issues and is a member of several IP organizations including INTA.

SJD Rep - Michaël Lessard (SJD)

Michaël Lessard is the SJD Representative and is a current SJD student. He holds an LL.M from New York University and a BCL|LL.B from McGill University. As a member of the Québec Bar, he clerked at the Court of Appeal of Québec. His research focuses on the legal treatment of bodies, identities and the self.

GPLM Rep - Kathi Gardhouse (GPLLM)

Kathi Gardhouse is the GPLM Rep and she is currently enrolled in the Canadian Law Concentration of the GPLLM Program with the goal of becoming a licensed as a lawyer in Ontario. She finished her law school degree in Germany in 2016 and immigrated to Canada right after. During her studies in Germany, she enjoyed an education in the German civil law system as well as in the American common law. She also spent one year in Luxembourg, focusing on European and International Law, as well as philosophy of law. Here in Canada she commenced her MA in Philosophy at McMaster University and upgraded to the PhD program after one year. When time permits, she continues to work on her PhD thesis, which focuses on Gabriel Tarde’s sociology of law. 

LLM Rep – Andrew Patel (LLM)

Andrew is the current LLM Rep. Born in Toronto, directly after graduating from high school, Andrew attended the University of Leeds and graduated with an LL.B. in 2018. He then pursued an M.A. in Political Economy at Columbia University, graduating in 2019. Andrew has previous experience serving on councils and committees. At the University of Leeds, Andrew served as a Secretary on the Leeds Law Society. Similarly, at Columbia University, Andrew served as an M.A. Representative on the Graduate Student Council. After completing his LL.M., Andrew will be articling with Goodmans LLP in Toronto in August 2020. He enjoys cooking, trying new restaurants, exploring Toronto, and playing with his dog!

Social Affairs – Ansshita Varshney (GPLLM)

Ansshita is a GPLLM student in the Canadian Law concentration. She currently works as a Technical Project Manager. Her recent work areas include health care materials development application, personal information protection under GDPR compliance, and personal healthcare information protection under HIPAA compliance. Before joining the University of Toronto, she went to UTM to pursue professional studies in the areas of Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, where some of her project work included Medicare Healthcare Prediction Model, application of Big Data for Gender Prediction Model and Predictive Analysis of Customer Segmentation. She also holds a Post Graduate Certificate in Project Management and an undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering. She aims at contributing her efforts towards the areas of data privacy and legal frameworks against disruptive technologies. She loves to volunteer with PMI as a mentor to students at various universities and colleges, and as a judge at DECAU student competitions. Ansshita has been practicing yoga for over a decade. She loves basketball, dance sports, and social dancing

GSU Representative – Carlos Vera de Freites (GPLLM)

Carlos is the current GSU Rep and currently sits on the Gender Accessibility and Diversity Committee. Carlos graduated as a Lawyer from the Universidad Central de Venezuela. In Canada, he obtained a Paralegal and a Human Resources Management Diploma from Centennial College. He is also a Licensed Paralegal by the Law Society of Ontario. Carlos focused most of his law career in International Law, both public and private, and international relations. He attended the summer course in Private International Law at The Hague Academy of International Law, the Netherlands in 2013. Before coming to Canada, Carlos was pursuing a Master in Private and Comparative Law at the Universidad Central de Venezuela. In Canada, he has gained experience mainly in the Immigration Law field by working as a Case Analyst and Case Manager for Immigration Law Firms by assisting Lawyers and Immigrant Consultants with corporate immigration and global mobility matters, as well with temporary and permanent residence applications.