Mishayla Kercival and Ms Nontando Tusi with Inanda
Seminary learners Ms Onke Mbuyisa and Ms
Learners who attended the Law as a Career Day student recruitment initiative on the Howard College campus recently left with a clear picture of the numerous possibilities a law degree offers.
The event, hosted by the School of Law, aimed to bring key stakeholders – learners, parents, educators and University officials – together at one venue to engage on the academic offerings at UKZN with specific emphasis on the discipline of law.
Talks by UKZN’s Director of University Relations and Marketing, Mr Len Mzimela; a Lecturer in the School of Law, Mr Vishal Surbun; and an Academic Administration Officer, Mr Sthembiso Khanyeza, provided a holistic insight into a career in law and other scholarly activities at UKZN.
Surbun’s presentation revolved around the benefits of acquiring a law degree, its versatility, the admissions criteria and the School of Law’s rich history.
‘Law is not just for lawyers. It’s a diverse discipline offering studies in different areas of law. Law can be described as a great tree with many branches, a discipline you won’t get bored with,’ said Surbun.
He told the audience that getting a law degree made it possible to enter the traditional fields of law and become a practising attorney or advocate or a judge in time. However, he said the versatility of the degree also enabled individuals with a law degree to become legal advisors within the corporate sector, public sector and other fields.
‘Any field of human endeavour has rules and follows laws, therefore lawyers are needed in different fields. The law and lawyers will follow humanity wherever they go, therefore law is just not for lawyers.’
Mzimela informed guests of the innovative research successes of UKZN; the supportive environment the University offered students; the important international collaborative initiatives UKZN shared with Higher Education Institutions abroad and the scholarships which rewarded academic excellence achieved by students.
Mzimela indicated that student counselling support services were available, not to students experiencing difficulties only, but also to new students who wanted to hone their skills, such as study techniques and time management.
International student exchange and study abroad programmes offered to UKZN students prepared them, he said, to function at a global level and learn about how the rest of the world existed.
Learners who attended the presentation found it enlightening and informative. Students appreciated an in-depth presentation dedicated to one discipline (law), instead of a presentation that discussed a series of disciplines.
Ms Nontando Tusi, a Danville Park Girls’ High Grade 12 learner, described the presentation as ‘highly informative’. She said listening in to the presentation made her realise the difference between getting information on academic programmes from the website and first-hand information from a person.
‘I have been passionate about the law profession from a young age. There’s a purpose behind law. I also love a good argument and a career in law will allow this,’ added Tusi.
Ms Mishayla Kercival, also of Danville Park Girls and a member of her school’s debating team, said: ‘The talk was friendly, informative and I enjoyed the freedom to ask questions. Other careers talks I attended have been general. A law-specific presentation was good.’
Ms Dannah-Grace Suter of Maris Stella found the information presented to be helpful and had given her a lot to think about. ‘I’m fairly certain I want to study law because it will allow me to make a difference. Law impacts the way our society is run.’
Ms Ruy Mannarui of Westville Girls’ High School said she attended the presentation because of her interest in environmental law. She found it both “enjoyable and informative”.