Five more questions before you graduate

image shows six students who graduated from ANU Law in July 2018
Top row from left: Abbey Seckerson, Will Randles, Kieran Pender. Bottom row from left: Chenyang (Ben) Ye, Max Henshaw, Maddison Godwin

It can be difficult. It can be challenging. It is certainly not for everyone and sometimes it takes a while for people to find out. But none of these are reasons preventing you from trying it out, because you will never know if it is for you until you tried.

Graduates tell us why they studied law, what they achieved while they were with us, and what lessons and experiences they'll take into the next phase of their lives.

Why did you decide to study law?

When I first started, there were two main reasons. First, I’ve always enjoyed a challenge and studying law certainly provides that! Though I struggled a fair bit early on, I gradually got the hang of it.
The second reason was to study a discipline that gave me choice. Studying law can allow you to work across such a wide range of industries and sectors.

Max Henshaw – read his full profile here

Originally from being from a disadvantaged rural area in NSW, I chose law to help make a difference in people’s lives. Many people seek out lawyers when they are in one of the most stressful times of their lives, so if there is any way that you can alleviate that stress – even if it is just helping them understand the words in a document – then it can make a real difference in their life.

Maddison Godwin – read her full profile here

What was the best thing about your time at ANU College of Law?

It is hard to pick just one, but I am particularly grateful for the international exposure I was given by the ANU College of Law. This has two aspects. Firstly, in the class room I was exposed to comparative and international law, and imbued with an understanding of the cross-border nature of law.

The ANU College of Law is a world-leader in these areas, and the expertise of members of faculty shone through in their teaching. Secondly, the ANU College of Law - and the university more broadly - offer a range of exciting international opportunities.

Kieran Pender – read his full profile here

I thoroughly enjoyed developing and writing my honours thesis under the supervision of Associate Professor Ron Levy. While the process was challenging, I appreciated the opportunity to discuss and workshop my ideas with a leading academic and create a substantial, original piece of academic work.
I also had the incredible experience of completing an internship at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Paris during my time at the ANU College of Law. I was able to research and analyse access to justice issues in OECD countries and learn from talented and passionate policymakers.

Abbey Seckerson – read her full profile here

What would you say to someone who is thinking about studying law?

It can be difficult. It can be challenging. It is certainly not for everyone and sometimes it takes a while for people to find out. But none of these are reasons preventing you from trying it out, because you will never know if it is for you until you tried. There is absolutely no shame in saying ‘I think law is not for me’ after giving it a go – I know many talented and hardworking friends who had that revelation after a year or two in the law school.

But if you are thinking about studying law, if you are interested in the intellectual challenges and rewards it may bring, if you are curious about seeing the law in action or developing a legal mind, you should definitely check it out. And of course, it is always good to chat to lawyers, academics and law students about their experience – people are very happy to share their stories!

Chenyang (Ben) Ye read his full profile here

How did winning prizes help you?

Winning prizes has helped build self-confidence and distinguished me in applying for jobs. It has also supplemented my (at times dire) income, helping me to support myself at university.

William Randles read his full profile here

What’s next?

Maddison Godwin: Currently I am enrolled to do my GDLP at ANU and am excited at the prospect of being admitted into practice where I can put my advocacy skills into practice. In the meantime, I am looking forward to taking some time off studying and travelling to Greece and Turkey for a short holiday.

Abbey Seckerson: I will continue building my practical legal and policy skills in my role in the Australian Public Service, and hopefully enjoy some time off over the summer. I then plan to commence a Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice with the ANU in 2019.

Updated:  10 August 2015/Responsible Officer:  College General Manager, ANU College of Law/Page Contact:  Law Marketing Team