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Practical skills with plenty of options

Joshua Lim's first hand student experience at Deakin Law School

Now in his final year of a combined commerce/law degree, Joshua Lim is looking forward to finalising his practical training and making a start on his life-long ambition to be a lawyer.

‘I’ve always wanted to study and practise law,’ he says. ‘Every job has its role in the fabric of society and I feel the law is about relationships between people and everything else – whether it’s other people, corporations, governments or even the environment. In the big picture sense, I see the role of a lawyer is to ensure that that fabric doesn’t fray.’

Studying both on-campus and online, Joshua says that a law career appealed to him because of its potential to make a positive difference.

‘I wanted a career that not only played well to my skills and provided a good career path, but one that provided fulfilment,’ he explains.

The commercial focus of the Joshua’s combined degree has offered him the opportunity to sample a wide range of commercial and corporate-related law topics while providing broader options.

‘The course doesn’t force students down the commercial path but provides a  wide variety of other fields from criminal and sentencing law, human rights and international law, and family law. There are plenty of options to choose from with a strong emphasis on doing what feels right for your own interests.’

During his time at Deakin, Joshua has taken advantage of as many work placements as possible and was also one of the first students to enrol the in Deakin’s specialised law clinics.

‘I had a marvellous experience with the New Venture Law Clinic and absolutely loved it. I am very glad that I have been asked to come back and now continue to work with Deakin on this front,’ he says.

The Deakin Law School offers two law clinics – the New Venture Law Clinic and the Civil and Commercial Law Clinic – which give students the opportunity to work on pro-bono cases under the supervision of experienced lawyers and academic staff.

Joshua says this experience has provided a meaningful experience that’s given him a great sense of fulfilment.

‘The students form an integral part of the Deakin law firm – much more than just being a volunteer or intern. It offers the ability to enhance your legal skills and experience what it’s like working on real cases with real clients – and real risk.’

A member of the Deakin Law Student Society for five years, Joshua was president during 2016 and has been an active participant in many facets of student life.

He’s worked as a student mentor, served a term with the Deakin University Student Association and one of the university’s political clubs and continues to work with the Law School Advisory Board and also as a  Peer Support Agent with Deakin’s Division of Student Life.

‘Lastly, I have been blessed with the opportunity in opening Deakin’s Community Mates Chapter – an international organisation which endeavours to link students with local charity and non-for-profit organisations to improve the community and affect change for the better of all peoples. Although there are always challenges in these roles, I’ve gained and learned so much. It’s allowed me to grow and has made me a better person!’ he says.

After completing the final requirements to practise as a lawyer in Australia, Joshua says that while his long-term goals are still a work-in-progress he’s looking forward to applying his knowledge and skills in the professional field.  

‘As to where that takes me I’m not completely sure but  one day I’d like to start my own firm – perhaps in the area of family or criminal law, or small claims civil disputes. I am passionate about the law and am looking forward to where it will take me.’

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