The second edition of Finishing School for Law Students was held from September 10-12, 2010, at Ashir Bhavan, Kochi. The three-day residential course that was attended by 18 law students from across the country was conducted by ADR Centre. The course was inaugurated by Dr N R Madhava Menon, a noted legal luminary.
In his inaugural speech, he spoke on the topic, Legal Profession: Recovering from Self-inflicted Wounds and Search for Fresh Moorings, and said the legal profession had to adjust itself with the changing times.
“Finishing Schools can help those students that are not fortunate to get plum jobs in mega corporations. It can enable them earn a decent living on their own, while serving people meaningfully,” Dr Menon said.
The Finishing School for Law Students is a welcome development, he said, as it could impart essential skills and information that are not ordinarily taught in law schools. “There is no other country in the world that allows poorly educated law graduates to become professional lawyers without any kind of screening to test their basic competence to handle the rights of others,” he said, adding that the profession was on the threshold of huge changes, some of which were the consequences of technological developments and globalization.
The course was a combination of interactive and skill-building sessions, and group discussions. Day one saw sessions on Advocacy, Court Management, Etiquette, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mock Mediation, and Language as a Tool for the Lawyer. The faculty for those sessions comprised of Helen Heeranandani, Professor Bhaskara Iyer and Advocate Sreelal Warrier. Sessions on Legal Entrepreneurship and Corporate Laws were held the next day. Students were also taken to Justice V R Krishna Iyer’s residence, where they were enlightened after interaction with him. It was followed by a boat ride on the back waters of Kochi.
The concluding day began with a session on ‘Involvement of the Media in the Judicial Process’ by Dr Sebastian Paul. Prasant VG conducted a session on ‘Changing Dimensions of Legal Profession and the Challenges Ahead’, while Zarine Habeeb discussed higher studies.
Students were awarded Course Certificates by Course Director Professor K C Abraham. The next Finishing School is slated to be held in the first half of 2011.