Panel Echoes Value of LL.M. in Boosting Careers and Professional Networks


L to R Claudia Colom, Nicole Scott, Mauricio Comm Ferrieria Santos, Sandra Friedrich, Enrique Ubarri, and Shawn Snyder

“Miami Law’s LL.M. professors are like having Jack Nicklaus teaching you to play golf,” said Ken Bednar, “The professors are practicing attorneys at the very pinnacle of their careers.”

Bednar was on a panel recently with five other LL.M. alumni speaking to the incoming classes of Miami Law's eight LL.M. programs. Each of the alumni was representing the respective program from which they graduated, and each carried a message of opportunity.

Ken Bednar, a graduate of the Robert Traurig-Greenberg Traurig LL.M. in Real Property Development, is now an experienced trial attorney and partner in the Fort Lauderdale office of Lewis Brisbois Bisgard & Smith LLP. He concentrates his practice in the areas of real estate, financial services, banking, complex commercial litigation, construction litigation, corporate shareholder and partnership disputes, employment and hospitality industry-related litigation. He handles matters involving litigation of complex real estate and related title insurance issues including commercial foreclosures and workouts.

Other panelists included:

Shawn Snyder, LL.M. Estate Planning

Shawn Snyder, a graduate of the Heckerling Graduate Program in Estate Planning and currently an adjunct professor in the program teaching taxation, commended the incoming classes for their commitment to bettering themselves and their skills in their field of specialty.

“I strongly encourage you all to use this opportunity to build both personal and professional relationships with the professors and your classmates, as these relationships will provide a lifetime of resources and referral sources across the nation and potentially the world,” Snyder said.

Snyder is now a partner with the law firm of Snyder & Snyder, P.A. in Davie, Florida where he practices exclusively in estate planning, estate administration, and creditor protection matters. He is currently a member of both The Florida Bar and the Washington D.C. Bar. Snyder is the former chairman of the prestigious Florida Bar Wills Trusts and Estates Certification Committee and is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in the specialty area of Wills, Trusts, and Estates.

Claudia Colom, LL.M. International Law

Rivero Mestre LLP lawyer Claudia Colom obtained a Master of Laws degree in U.S. and Transnational Law from Miami Law in 2010. Prior to her time at Miami Law she graduated in 2002 from the University of Havana School of Law in Cuba, where she was born and raised and then practiced as in-house counsel for an international corporation. Before receiving her LL.M., she worked as a legal intern in an international, full-service law firm in Spain, where she was admitted to practice law in 2008. She is now admitted to the New York Bar.

“While at the LL.M. program, I focused in areas that interested me and gained the particular knowledge that has enhanced and improved my career prospects,” Colom told the students.

“The program has opened up a variety of opportunities that I wouldn’t have been exposed to if I hadn’t been part of it. Of course, the vast knowledge, helpfulness, and experience of the faculty and staff have played a major role in my professional career. In sum, the University of Miami School of Law has given me the opportunity to make lifelong friends and professional connections in the United States and all over the world, which is an invaluable global network to this day," Colom said.

Nicole Scott, LL.M. Taxation

Nichole Scott shared her experiences as a former student in the Tax LL.M. program. She is now a partner at Holland & Knight and a graduate and adjunct in the Graduate Program in Taxation. She practices in the firm’s Private Wealth Services Group developing the structures for transferring wealth from one generation to the next.

Mauricio Gomm, LL.M. International Arbitration

The White & Case International Arbitration LL.M. was represented by LL.M. alumnus Mauricio Gomm, a Brazilian international arbitration specialist and co-founder of GST LLP, a highly-ranked international arbitration boutique law firm with offices in Miami and Washington, D.C.

Enriquie Ubarri, LL.M. Entertainment, Arts and Sports

Enrique Ubarri, LL.M. '16, spoke on behalf Miami Law’s newest LL.M. in Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law. In satisfaction of the program’s practicum requirement, Ubarri is currently advising the majority shareholders of PR Crown Entertainment, owners of the Miss Puerto Rico Universe franchise. Ubarri advised JLP & Company, Inc in connection with all entertainment related matters.