find the latest legal job
Corporate and Commercial Partner
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Full time · Join a leading Adelaide commercial law firm
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Sydney NSW
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
Legal Inhouse / Lawyer / Company Secretary
Category: Other | Location: Brisbane QLD 4000
· Fantastic Company · Potential to be Part Time / Flexible Work Pattern
View details
Infrastructure Lawyer/SA
Category: Construction Law | Location: Sydney CBD, Inner West & Eastern Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Global elite law firm · Dedicated Infrastructure team
View details
In-house mentors extend a hand to regional students

In-house mentors extend a hand to regional students


Providing regional university students with the same opportunities as their city-based peers encourages them to enter the profession and adds to industry diversity, the general counsel of Telstra Legal has said.

Telstra Legal recently ran a mentorship program with Southern Cross University’s Summer Law School, which allowed students from regional NSW to be mentored by Telstra lawyers.

Fourteen Telstra lawyers participated in the program, which ran from 9 November 2015 to 12 February 2016.

“Talented people from less typical backgrounds can be discouraged from joining the profession, or pushed out by an inflexible or unsupportive environment,” Telstra general counsel Carmel Mulhern said.

“Even though we have strong diversity performance within our legal team, there can be long-term cultural issues in the profession that mean diverse talent may not find its way to our doors.

“We think it’s a great investment in the development of a future generation of lawyers from regional Australia. It gives students access to insights and guidance from experienced practitioners.”

Speaking with Lawyers Weekly, Angela Powditch, a Southern Cross University law student who participated in the program, said she gained a lot from being mentored by Telstra legal counsel Virginia Galloway.

Ms Powditch explained that after an initial introductory email she had friendly and informal conversations with Ms Galloway on the phone, which she was able to tailor to her interests.

“It was amazing to get insight that you mightn't necessarily read on the internet or learn at uni,” Ms Powditch said.

“It’s fantastic to have her as a contact too, even though she's in Melbourne and I’m here – the world's a small place.”

Ms Galloway was able to provide Ms Powditch with insight into government work, private practice and in-house, having worked in all those areas herself.

“I definitely feel like I have more of an understanding of the profession now,” Ms Powditch said.

“You never know who you might meet if you just put your hand up, and [you] often get more back than you think you're going to.”

Ms Galloway said she believes it’s important that regional law students are offered the opportunity to participate in programs like this.

"It is so important and it’s great that Telstra, and hopefully other companies, get involved with this sort of thing because it would be difficult for [regional students] to get that sort of exposure otherwise,” Ms Galloway said.

“It’s the kind of thing that anyone would benefit from. When you're at uni you often don’t really know where to go, so anyone that's got years of experience and ideas is going to be useful.”

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

In-house mentors extend a hand to regional students
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Nov 24 2017
Demand lifts in 2017/18 for short-term finance to cover crises
Promoted by NWC Finance. The first five months of the 2017-18 financial year have seen unpreceden...
LCA welcomes religious freedom panel
Nov 24 2017
LCA welcomes religious freedom panel
The Law Council of Australia says the establishment of a panel which will examine the human right to...
Law Society launched a new website, legal politics and lawmaking
Nov 24 2017
Law Society launches project to engage young Aussies
The Law Society of NSW has launched a new website to engage young Australians in legal politics and ...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...