For Law Students
Social justice experience for law students
Make a difference to social justice
Get some practical legal experience
Develop practical legal skills that employers are looking for
Students who get involved in social justice get:
- Satisfaction from helping disadvantaged people gain access to justice
- Practical experience which develops legal work skills that can’t be learnt from classes and texts, like communication with clients and analysing real life legal issues
- Opportunities to network with solicitors and other law students
- Connections with local community
- Work experience that looks good on a CV
How to get involved
(also see list of resources below)
- Social Justice Opportunities is a guide produced by the Centre and the Australian Law Students' Association for students and new lawyers on how to volunteer and find employment in the social justice sphere (go here for more details)
- Volunteer at a Community Legal Centre (see CLC Volunteers for current opportunities)
- Check with your Law Student Society or the Law Faculty at your university for pro bono programs or placements
- Enrol in a clinical legal education program
What is pro bono?
Pro bono means “for the public good”. Law students who get involved in pro bono provide a community service by:
- assisting in providing services to improve access to justice for disadvantaged people who can’t otherwise afford to pay for legal assistance, or
- assisting non-profit organisations that work on behalf of those people, and
- doing it without getting any kind of fee, reward or academic credit.
It’s a great introduction for students to the ethical responsibility of lawyers to contribute their services.
Where your social justice experience can lead you
Many students who become involved in social justice while they are studying develop a passion which leads them to a career with a social justice focus, like working in a community legal centre, legal aid, public interest law clearing house or a law firm pro bono practice. Pro bono legal work is also recognised for the purpose of the pre-admission Practical Legal Training requirement.
The skills and relationships that students develop from experience in a social justice environment, certainly gives them an advantage in applying for any job requiring practical legal skills.
Pro bono has become an integral part of legal practice. A guide to the pro bono practices of 30 of Australia’s largest firms can be found in the Pro Bono Practices Guide.
For more information please contact the Centre at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 02 9385 7381.
top of page >