My name is Benedict Coyne and I'm the Queensland Convenor and National Committee Member of Australian Lawyers for Human Rights. I am the state convenor so I oversee activities throughout Queensland. I am also a national committee member and the chair of the new Human Rights Act Sub-Committee.
What I enjoy about the profession is using my expertise and knowledge that I've learnt from studying at Southern Cross University to afford people access to justice who wouldn't otherwise have it. It's very energising working with clients who have suffered wrongs and you can assist them in getting redress for the damages that they've suffered through the legal system.
What I look forward to everyday is the challenge of representing my clients and getting the most optimal outcomes for them, and also being there to give them, you know, comprehensive legal advice to put them at ease with the processes that they're going through. With Australian Lawyers for Human Rights I'm absolutely energised by the amazing networks of very inspirational individuals throughout Australia that I get to meet who are very focussed on working for social justice.
Yes I have many interesting stories prior to starting my career and studies at Southern Cross University. Once I finished school I really wanted to experience the world and so I enrolled in what I call the University of Life or of the world and I undertook a lot of travelling and also a lot of voluntary work in orphanages in Nepal and also work on a lot of social justice issues across Australia and environmental issues from Western Australia to Tasmania and Victoria.
Me and a group of friends also devised a plan to ride our bicycles across Australia, which we did from Perth to Melbourne, to raise awareness of environmental issues, which was fascinating.
So I studied a Graduate entry Law degree. I was enrolled actually by correspondence but I did some of the degree at the Lismore campus, which was brilliant. My want to study Law to was founded on my strong passion for social justice. And so I spent quite a lot of time comprehensively researching a law school that would suit my needs and the flexible delivery option that Southern Cross University offered was brilliant.
Well University is the foundation of my career and of my legal career. One of the benefits about going to university when you really and truly know what you want to do and what you are passionate about is you'll work really hard and you'll be engaged, which I did. And I got, you know, I worked hard and I got good grades and that afforded me many opportunities including being associate for Justice Bromberg on the Federal Court in Melbourne. And it's also now allowed me to progress into a Masters of International Human Rights Law in Oxford in the UK, which is very exciting as well.
So that grounding at university and all of the opportunities that came through there, including working at community legal centres, including using the university's network to access a whole range of different opportunities has really set me up very well for a strong foundation for my legal career.
I'm Benedict Coyne, and that's my story.
Whether it’s defending a client in court, challenging a ruling in a sports tribunal, building a case to protect the environment or kick-starting a corporate career, a law degree can get you there.
Our double degrees in law can multiply your employment opportunities. With a focus on social justice, critical thinking, academic rigour and work-ready skills – all enhanced by learning under the Southern Cross Model of teaching – our professionally accredited qualifications open the way to a range of careers, including:
- Lawyer (specialist or generalist)
- Property conveyancer
- Entertainment lawyer
- Court officer
- Environmental lawyer (one of the fastest-growing fields of legal research)
- Human rights and social justice advocate.
Students have the opportunity to learn from prominent people in the law, human rights, social policy and justice. For example, our public lectures and seminar series have been presented by luminaries such as Ms Raelene Webb QC (President of the National Native Title Tribunal, Mr Walter Sofronoff QC, and Professor Rosalind Croucher AM (President of the Australian Law Reform Commission).
Higher Degrees Research
Southern Cross Model is a better way to learn
For almost a century the sandstone walls of Universities housed the same teaching model. The Southern Cross Model is different – immersive, responsive, in tune with the 21st century student. By joining Southern Cross, you are part of a better way to learn.
Prepare for university with a pathway program
If you have the passion, we have the entry pathway. We offer preparation courses to refresh your academic skills, increase your entry rank, or get you on track for a degree with a short course.
How to apply
Ready to take the next step in your higher education journey? Find out how you can apply.
The University offers a wide range of scholarships for undergraduate and postgraduate students.
There are many ways to get into Southern Cross University. Discover your options with an entry pathway.
Student life at SCU
Our UniLife program aims to encourage both your academic success and support your wellbeing.
Get in touch
Future students (domestic)
T: 1800 626 481
T: 1800 005 687
T: +61 2 6620 3666
Future students (international)
T: +61 2 6620 3876
For more details