SCL Chair Mark O’Conor reflects on a learning experience and asks for help with some forthcoming learning experiences
A couple of weeks ago I had the chance to slip into the audience at our recent Back to Basics event.
Although I could not stay the course for the whole day, it was immediately apparent that it was an outstanding day and the resulting 'social media echo' was testament to the quality of the presentations, and the ways in which complex concepts were made far more accessible. So I would like to thank our extraordinarily knowledgeable Trustees, Neil Brown and Chris James, for their 'epic performances' (as one tweeter put it) and their special guests who helped on the day.
What did impress me was the significant number of junior lawyers attending, some at an SCL event for the first time. Engaging new members in our activities is a critical part of the SCL's mission, obviously for the Society itself, but also in the course of enhancing know-how among the legal world and beyond.
Which is why I would love to see as many of us as possible support our inaugural Student Tech Law Challenge coming up next February in London. The event will see students and recent graduates compete in teams of two by living ‘a day in the life of a tech lawyer’ negotiating an IT/ technology contract. It will be their chance to network with potential employers at an early stage in their careers and see at first hand the extraordinary range of legal issues that tech law encompasses. It’s a great idea so hats off to Ryan Adams and Michael Butterworth, the inspirations behind it.
Here is what we need from you: we are looking for members either to attend on the day, or even better, to sponsor a prize. May I suggest an offer of a summer work placement for the winners? The exact date is to be finalised (it will be a Saturday in February 2018) but I wanted to give you plenty of warning to put things in place and so we can announce your involvement as soon as we start to publicise the event. Just get in touch with Caroline with any offers of support, even if tentative, or if you have any questions.
At the very least we’d like to start signing up competitors at our first University Ambassadors event for students, slated for late November. The Ambassadors scheme is another pillar of our student outreach efforts - read more about the scheme here.
These initiatives do make a difference. My last word this month is to report the pleasing news that the recipient of our 2017 Bursary, Zoe Christodoulou, has just started her LLM at QMUL. I hope she is just one of many who we can help benefit in the future.