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Law students head to Byron Bay


21 November 2005
Students from 17 other universities around Australia have opted to spend some of their summer on the North Coast and study law with Southern Cross University.

A record 140 places have been filled, with bookings still coming in, for Southern Cross University's Byron Bay Summer Law School from December 3 to 23.

The annual event is an innovative and intensive academic program for students or professionals requiring specific legal knowledge. Most interest has come from undergraduate legal students taking the opportunity to gain a unit or two during their university break.

Lismore solicitor Ralph James, lecturer for Advanced Advocacy, said the SCU Byron Bay Summer School had a great atmosphere and the units were practical.

"The advocacy unit I teach is unique in that it gives students a chance to focus on courtroom and practical skills, whereas a lot of law at uni is theoretical," Mr James said.

"Students hear from the local magistrate, the presiding district court judge, the Deputy Senior Crown Prosecutor and Crown Prosecutor from Lismore."

Senior Solicitor with Grundy Television Marie Foyle, who teaches Entertainment Law, said the diverse backgrounds of students, from different parts of the country and different universities enhanced the quality of discussion and debate.

Other presenters and units at the summer school are: Dr Angela Ward, practising at the London Bar, on International Human Rights Law; James Cook University's Aidan Ricketts on Public Interest Advocacy; Lismore Barrister Graham Bassett on Cyberlaw; SCU's Professor Jim Jackson with Education and the Law; and Simon Clough on Mediation and Dispute Resolution. Retired Supreme Court judge Justice Greg James is guest presenter on a range of units.

The SCU Summer Law School offers a choice of seven law units, with units being taught across seven days and requiring subsequent independent study.

The Summer School also includes two forums open to the public: Cyberlaw on December 11 from 2pm to 4pm, and a forum on asylum seekers on December 17 at 7pm. The latter features a documentary by Kate Durham, and comments from guests including Julian Burnside QC, international human rights lawyer Dr Angela Ward, and Linda Smith from Rural Australians for Refugees. The venue for both forums is Byron Bay community Centre.

Find out more about Southern Cross University Byron Bay Summer Law School at or phone Julie on 66203104.

Photo caption: Lismore solicitor Ralph James.

Media information: Brigid Veale 02 66593006 or 0439 680 748.