About Me


Professor Choe-Smith's teaching and research are in ethics, bioethics, social and political philosophy, and the philosophy of law. She earned an MA and PhD in Philosophy from Georgetown University and a BA in Philosophy and Political Science from the University of California at San Diego. Her educational training also includes a JD from the University of California at Davis and an MA in Philosophy of Religion and Ethics and an MA in Theology from the Talbot School of Theology. 

Professor Choe-Smith has had the privilege of teaching at different colleges and universities. She previously taught at Boston University, Bentley University, University of Massachusetts at Lowell, and Georgetown University. Before pursuing a career in philosophy, Professor Choe-Smith practiced law as a Senior Appellate Research Attorney with the California Court of Appeal.

Professor Choe-Smith has always been interested in questions of justice, especially global justice. What standards of justice apply to state and non-state actors in the international context?  What do we owe the global poor or those who are oppressed or displaced and no longer enjoy the rights of citizens in their countries of origin? How do we resolve our differences and live together in our various domestic contexts given cultural pluralism and our fundamentally different conceptions of justice? Professor Choe-Smith invites her students and peers to join her in thinking through these and other questions. 

In the same way that Professor Choe-Smith's research has a practical focus, her teaching also has a practical focus. This is maybe most evident in her efforts to design courses that have an experiential learning component, including her service learning version of Phil 101 Ethics and Social Issues, in which the service opportunities connect with the issues in applied ethics covered in the course. Students are able to volunteer with organizations such as the International Rescue Committee that helps refugees and other immigrants and My Sister's House that helps victims of sexual abuse and domestic violence. This is also evident in her efforts to design and teach a philosophy internship course, such as the Phil 195 Judge Epstein Judicial Internship Program. Her students should gain an appreciation for philosophical theories and concepts, but also exposure to many real world issues in ethics and law.