This edition of Indigenous Intern News looks at the experiences of Suzie, Mikaela and Kat over the last two months.
I attended the Paris Agreement: Implications for Australian Lawyers along with my fellow intern Mikaela French. The seminar was presented by the Environmental Defenders Office and was held at Banco Court, with a distinguished guest speaker list which included The Hon Justice Alan Wilson SC, The Hon Justice Brian Preston SC and Dr Justine Bell-James. This was an informative presentation outlining the possible repercussions Australian lawyers might face in light of the Paris Agreement, which took effect on 4 November 2016 and was ratified by the Turnbull Government on 10 November 2016. Possible implications Australian lawyers might face include advising their clients on how to be informed and respond to climate change risks, and to understand the significant impact climate change will have on governments and the private sector.
Another highlight was the Logan City Council launching an Indigenous Internship program in partnership with Gadens. I was fortunate to be the first recipient and will be interning in the Corporate Property Division. I hope to achieve real world experience in the public sector whilst learning and understanding the operations and functions of local government. As a Logan resident for over 20 years, I’m honoured and excited to begin this next chapter in my career.
Over the summer holidays, Kathryn and I attended the annual Career Tracker Leadership Development Institute, along with 560 other interns throughout Australia. This national event was held in Sydney, where we participated in workshops, networked with professionals and attended the Gala Dinner on our final evening. Kathryn and I had the opportunity to meet staff from Gadens and Dentons at the dinner and share our experiences.
In addition, the Queensland Law Society hosted a Lawlink event supported by the Indigenous Lawyers Association of Queensland. This event allowed Indigenous students to meet the current President of the Queensland Law Society and network with legal professionals and students from other Universities.
The Honourable Justice Philippides has shown her support time and time again for the CareerTrackers program. Over the last couple of weeks, she has provided tickets for multiple events for the Indigenous Interns.
Justice Philippides provided tickets to Indigenous Law students to attend the Eighth Blackbird concert at the Conservatorium Theatre in South Bank. Suzie and I attended, along with our CareerTrackers advisors, and sincerely enjoyed the concert. Neither of us was familiar with chamber music; however, we were enriched by the experience nonetheless. During the interval and after the show, we had the opportunity to network with members of Musica Viva, one of the composers and members of the Indigenous Lawyers Association Queensland.
Another experience afforded to the interns by Justice Philippides was the opportunity to attend a screening of the new film Zach’s Ceremony. Suzie and I once again attended with other interns and were able to network with producers of the film, Zach himself, and Justice Philippides. I would strongly recommend that everyone watch the film. Zach’s Ceremony explores the notion of growing up Indigenous in Australia, its implications – particularly in the twenty-first century – and promotes the beauty of Aboriginal culture and traditional ceremonies. It was an incredible film and there were no dry eyes in the room!