Anglia Ruskin law students win through to Sydney finals

Published: 13 March 2007 at 16:40

Two students from Anglia Ruskin University’s Anglia Law School have won through to the international finals of a major law competition which focuses on interviewing and client counselling.

Joanne Martin and Scott Porter won the National Client Interviewing Competition at Oxford Institute of Legal Practice. They were crowned top team over eight other finalists, beating Cardiff University to second place and Oxford Institute to third place.

The Competition is sponsored by the Law Society and, on average, 24 universities from England and Wales take part each year. Anglia Law School has won this competition on four occasions which is an unbeaten record.  The competition consists of a first interview with a client by two students acting as legal advisers. This year the subject of the interview was Family Law which provided some interesting legal and moral problems for the interviewers. The students had to interview three clients in the finals and were assessed panels of three judges consisting of an academic, a legal practitioner and a counsellor.

The students now (4 April) go on to compete internationally on behalf of England and Wales during Easter at the University of Sydney accompanied by their coach, Lindsey Squire.  They will be competing against teams from America, Canada, Australia, Scotland, the Caribbean, Hong Kong and India and others.  As well as the competition they will be able to experience the legal ambience of Sydney with tours of Sydney’s Legal Precincts and a master-class on the listening lawyer.

Legal Practice student Joanne Martin said:

“We were all stunned, speechless and elated when we found out we had won. It was quite nail biting as the results were read out in reverse order and when we did not come second or third we did not imagine that we had won.”

“The quality of the other teams was high. After the presentation we made multiple telephone calls to parents, partners and friends. We are proud to be representing the university and England and Wales in the international competition and thoroughly looking forward to visiting Sydney. We cannot wait to meet the teams from all the different countries as well as enjoying the sights and culture of Sydney.”

Coach Lindsey Squire added:

“The students worked incredibly hard to pull off this win and they are very strong when it comes to interviewing and counselling. We focus heavily on these skills and they practice a great deal which obviously puts them among the best in the country.”

“The Legal Practice course is a one year postgraduate programme. From here these students will move into training before becoming fully-fledged solicitors.”

The winning team wins £250 each and the winning law school wins £1000 from the Law Society of England and Wales.