The University of Queensland Law Society Inc. (UQLS) is a not-for-profit, volunteer-run organisation with a long and proud history of serving the academic and extra-curricular needs of University of Queensland Law students and the broader UQ community. The same aims and purposes that inspired the former Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia, Sir Harry Gibbs, to found the UQLS in 1937 continue to drive us in everything we do.
The Patron of the UQLS is Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce AC, Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, a former student of the T.C. Beirne School of Law herself.
The UQLS is organised into five portfolios:
1. Education & Competitions
2. Publications & Marketing
4. L Card & Activities
5. Professional Sponsorship & Careers
Education & Competitions
For over 75 years, the UQLS has sought to promote excellence in both teaching and learning. The Society works in close consultation with the Law School and represents the interests of law students.
Three Education Officers are available to represent the concerns of law students. The UQLS acts as an advocate for the student body and actively seeks the opinions of students in a variety of forums.
The UQLS also provides the Allens Notepool which allows access to the summaries of outstanding students in a number of courses. These may be downloaded from the UQLS website.
The UQLS runs a series of competitions throughout the year that encourage students to develop their practical legal skills, with a focus on oral advocacy and alternative dispute resolution. In 2013, the UQLS will run Mooting, Negotiation, Client Interviewing, Witness Examination, and Paper Presentation competitions. The UQLS Competitions Team is assisted by the Competitions Advisory Board.
First and Second Year
The UQLS aims to ease the transition to law school by hosting a number of events and activities with the objective of helping first year students develop friendships and study skills. In 2013, the UQLS will host the First Year Dinner, the Hopgood Ganim First and Second Year Retreat, the Cooper Grace Ward Buddy Program, and the Cooper Grace Ward Amazing Race. These events will also be accompanied by the production of two publications: the First Year Survival Guide and the First Year Handbook.
The UQLS believes that equality of opportunity is paramount to enable all law students to make the most of their time at law school. To this end, the UQLS provides a number of student support initiatives, including a textbook loan scheme, an equity grants program, and scholarships. The UQLS also believes that the health and well-being of law students is also critical to students achieving their best. In 2013, the UQLS will recognise this important issue by hosting a number of equity awareness forums and by producing a health and well-being guide.
Postgraduate, Exchange and International
The representation of postgraduate and exchange students is fundamental to the UQLS being a student body for all law students. The Postgraduate and Exchange officer acts as a liaison between the UQLS, the Law School, and the postgraduate and international student cohort. To facilitate this liaison, the UQLS hosts the Welcome BBQ for all international students and provides a buddy program to assist these students settle-in to law school. The UQLS also produces an annual exchange publication called Go Global. The purpose of this publication is to provide a guide to those students seeking to go on exchange and careers in an international capacity.
L Card & Activities
On a social level the UQLS organises a wide variety of social functions throughout the year. These include the Law Ball, Pub Crawl, Croquet Day, King and Wood Mallesons Law Dinner, and semester wrap up parties. Keynote speakers at recent Law Dinners include the esteemed journalist Kerry O’Brien, The Hon Michael Kirby, The Hon Gough Whitlam, The Right Hon Malcolm Fraser, Justice Kiefel AC, and David Jackson AM QC. Functions such as these help to promote an enjoyable and inclusive university experience.
The L Card
The UQLS also produces The L Card, the biggest student discount card in Brisbane, in conjunction with the QUT Association of Justice and Law Students (QUOTALS) and Griffith University Law Society (GULS). The L Card provides students with special deals at numerous hospitality, retail and services outlets in Brisbane. Visit the L Card website to see the full list of deals.
In the sporting arena, the Thomson Lawyers Law Cup provides a day of friendly competition between law students and practitioners. Every semester, the UQLS fields teams in the UQ Mixed Social, Mixed Netball and Uni Touch competitions.
The Corrs Chambers Westgarth UQ Law Revue has become an entertainment highlight on the university calendar. It annually plays to four full houses at the Schonell Theatre at UQ. The Revue is a satirical take on all things law, politics, society, popular culture and university.
To assist students in learning about and gaining employment with their law qualifications, the UQLS organises a Professional Development Seminar Series in March where students can gain information from a wide range of employers. In addition, the UQLS hosts Annual Professional Drinks, where students and practitioners have the opportunity to meet and mingle.
In Semester 2, the UQLS runs the popular Barristers Work Experience Program (BWEP) and the Ashurst Work Experience Program (AWEP), which gives second and third year students the chance to undergo 40 hours of unpaid work experience with a practising Barrister and at Ashurst.
Want to know more?
Elections are held at the Annual General Meeting in August/September for all of the UQLS Executive positions. This is your chance to get involved in the running of the UQLS, so look out for calls for nominations.
If you have any questions or suggestions, drop by the office in the West Wing of the Forgan Smith building (Room 1-W227) or consult the contacts page.