LIV and ACAP launch the PLT that opens doors to the legal profession

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The Law Institute of Victoria (LIV) and the Australian College of Applied Professions (ACAP) have combined their expertise in the legal and education sectors to launch a new industry-led Practical Legal Training (PLT) course in Victoria.

This new course raises the benchmark for PLT, providing law graduates with an immersive, mentor-guided experience and equipping them with the practical and professional skills employers demand, along with enhanced opportunities to engage with the profession through the LIV.

LIV CEO Adam Awty said he was excited by the new offering, which will genuinely connect PLT students with the profession.

“As the peak body for the legal profession in Victoria, the LIV is in a unique position to provide genuine connections for students with potential employers, and the opportunity to be involved in LIV activities and networking with the profession during their PLT. This course is a first step in a young lawyer’s legal career, not just the last hurdle in finishing law school,” Mr Awty said.

Mr Awty also said the opportunity to work with a leading global education provider brings the best opportunity for students to learn relevant, applicable skills to ensure readiness for entering the legal profession.

“We’re excited to be partnering with ACAP because they bring expertise in post-graduate education across the professions, not just in law. We know from employers in our membership that graduates need extended business, communication, and problem-solving skills, a keen, embedded ethical framework, and a solid understanding of the profession they are entering. An understanding of resilience and health and wellbeing strategies will also ensure they are well equipped to meet the challenges and opportunities of professional practice.”

The LIV’s General Manager of Knowledge and Learning, Kellie Hamilton, added, “We’ve spoken and listened to our membership – both employers and young lawyers. ACAP has worked with us to design this course from first principles –responding to employer demand and specifically developing a digital-first, ethically embedded course, whose graduates will empower and sustain the next generation of the Victorian legal profession.

ACAP CEO George Garrop said ACAP’s psychology expertise and applied learning approach will help to develop well-rounded future leaders in the legal profession.

“We are thrilled to have partnered with the LIV to launch a newly designed PLT course that responds to the needs of the profession, connects today’s legal industry leaders with the leaders of tomorrow, and reinforces that people and people skills are at the centre of legal practice,” Mr Garrop said.

“The PLT course combines ACAP’s deep knowledge of psychology, management, and criminology with LIV’s legal sector heritage and access to leading legal practitioners and mentors for our students. Together, we are preparing our students to succeed in the PLT program, by offering the practical legal skills and extended personal and professional skills imperative for their career success.”

The PLT will be spearheaded by Course Director Adam May, a longstanding member of the LIV and an Australian Legal Practitioner who holds Master’s degrees in both law and education, and comes to ACAP with 15 years’ experience delivering practical legal education in Australia.

“I am thrilled by the opportunity to be leading this PLT which will reshape the next generation of the legal profession. This course brings the best of both worlds in high-quality education and connection to the legal profession which will open the door to a world of opportunities,” Mr May said.

“We know that the law is more than just what is on paper and in textbooks. This course will mean students are confident and ready for the workplace. This includes important topics like ethical and professional responsibilities, managing vulnerable clients, cross-cultural awareness, and respect in the workplace.”

The course has also been developed in close consultation with a five-person committee of leaders from across the legal profession. The members of the course committee are Dr. Andrew Cannon AM FAAL (adjunct Professor at Adelaide and Flinders Universities, and Chair of the Course Committee), Genevieve Collins (Chief Executive Partner, Lander & Rogers), Alice Cooney (Principal Solicitor, Office of Public Prosecutions), Matthew Hibbins (Melbourne Managing Partner, Minter Ellison) and the Honourable Nahum Mushin AM (former Judge, Family Court of Australia).

Course enrolments for the Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice are now open for the first intake, which begins 30 January 2023. Visit ACAP’s course page for more information.

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