I graduated from Deakin University with a double degree in Commerce (majoring in Economics) and Law (Honours) in 2016. I am currently employed at MinterEllison as a graduate where I am on my first rotation (of three) in the Dispute Resolution team. As part of this rotation I have completed three months of Intellectual Property based litigation and am currently completing three months in the general commercial litigation team. As part of the graduate program the graduate cohort is involved in extensive ‘non-billable’ activities including undertaking clinics for Justice Connect, ongoing mentor programs and playing social sports on a Tuesday night and Thursday lunch time.
Additionally, working in the Dispute Resolution team I have been involved in a wide variety of matter including acting for EnergyAustralia in defense of a $1 billion lawsuit filed by Queensland Investment Corporation regarding a warranties claim, acting for an interested party in opposition to the merger of Tabcorp and Tatts and acting for Heinz in defence of proceedings issued by the ACCC regarding misleading and deceptive conduct in its snack range.
Highlights of my time at MinterEllison include conducting witness interviews, briefing Counsel, conducting mediations for one of the four big banks and being the direct line of contact (and answering questions) from CEO’s and major shareholders of ASX 100 corporations.
In my spare time I enjoy playing basketball, snow skiing and reading a good novel.
What has been your path to where you are now?
I commenced my studies at Deakin University in 2012, straight out of high school. Across my time at Deakin I was involved in a wide range of activities from participating in moots and mentor programs to having part time jobs as a basketball referee, in administration at a hospital and as a paralegal at a boutique law firm. I also volunteered at AED Legal Centre and at Youthlaw, both opportunities afforded to me through the Deakin Law School. I applied for the MinterEllison clerkship program in 2015 and having successfully completed that clerkship, was offered a graduate position in August 2016.
Being involved in extra-curricular activities has been central to the development of my legal skills with Firms seeking individuals that are ‘well rounded’.
What has been the most interesting task you have engaged in since being admitted into the legal profession?
Although yet to be admitted as the graduate cohort is still undertaking their Practical Legal Training, my most interesting task has been being the central intermediary between the Firm and the Director of a large government organisation. This has allowed for me to develop my legal skills as well as my communication skills. This role has allowed for me to be privy to private and commercially sensitive information, directly involved in mediations and settlements whilst also providing legal advice that shapes policy in a commercially relevant way.
What has been your greatest achievement?
Across my time at University my greatest achievements undoubtedly came from being involved in the activities that Deakin had to offer. Being involved in these programs allowed for me to represent Deakin at an International Negotiation Competition in India against 30 other Universities. My partner and I successfully made the grand finals, competing against in the initial rounds well known Universities including Oxford, Kings College London and Melbourne University. Although losing to Cambridge University in the grand final, the experience of travelling overseas and (partially) succeeding is an achievement that I am thankful to Deakin for Providing.
If you could go back in time and give yourself one piece of advice back when you were in law school, what would it be and why?
In line with the common theme of the above information, I would advise myself to be involved as much as possible across my time at University from my very first year. If I was asked what my greatest regret at University is I would say that it was not undertaking the opportunity to go on exchange. Being involved in University life, socially or academically, opens up numerous opportunities that not only enhances enjoyment of University life but increases your chances of being offered a coveted clerkship position and eventual graduate position.