July 2016

IPLS Newsletter

July 2016


Welcome to the July edition of Steps.  I am pleased to provide you with an update on IPLS activities over the past few months.

I am very happy to report that the first offering of our 13 week fulltime onsite course was very well received by all the trainees on the course. When asked if they felt the skills they acquired would be useful in practice, 77% agreed they would.

Based on trainee and employer feedback we are definitely including the course in our 2017 schedule.  Also included in the 2017 calendar are March and July intakes in Auckland and Wellington with onsites scheduled to take place outside business hours. More information is continued further down.

It is very important to us we continue to meet the needs of the profession. While we take every opportunity to consult with industry stakeholders it is not possible to talk to everyone. Therefore, we invite you to have your say by completing the five minute anonymous online survey.

Kind regards,

Bernadette Wilson
National Director

Fulltime onsite course proves a hit

Following the completion of its first 13 week fulltime onsite course on April 29, IPLS invited trainees to complete an anonymous online survey. The results of this survey were extremely positive and IPLS is pleased to confirm this course has already been scheduled to run in 2017.
While its blended learning course, which comprises a combination of onsite and online seminars, continues to form the majority of the 2017 schedule, IPLS is pleased to include the new full-time onsite option which will run from February 1 to April 29, 2017 in Auckland and Wellington.

The 2016 course comprised graduates from Chapman Tripp and Bell Gully as well as several independent trainees who were keen to benefit from such a course.

“The fact two such busy law firms were  prepared to have employees away from the workplace for 13 weeks clearly demonstrates the importance they place on the high value skills training provided by IPLS,” said IPLS National Director, Bernadette Wilson.

“It can be overwhelming for graduates trying to adjust to life outside university, settle into an unfamiliar workplace environment and give their best to their Profs course so it is particularly pleasing to see members of the profession recognising the value of allowing graduates to focus on Profs full-time,” she said.

“The onsite seminars are an important element of our existing programme and are always rated very highly by our trainees. Being in the classroom allows trainees to practice their skills in a safe and supportive environment and receive immediate, detailed individual feedback on their performance,” she said.

“IPLS has always maintained a strong focus on competency-based, skills training. Our approach is that skills are transferable across a broad range of transactions so we are taking this opportunity to include additional corporate and commercial transactions typically undertaken by a first year lawyer in a law firm.

“However, the development of the fulltime course also provided us with an opportunity to expand our library of transactions used to teach the required 11 skills,” she concluded.

Comments from the IPLS evaluation survey included:

“Looking at the structure of proper legal documents such as certificates of title, lease agreements, and agreements for sale and purchase.   I was very satisfied with the oral assessments. The structures were highly useful and I will probably use these in the future.”

“The learning objectives of the Legal Practice module were clear and easy to follow. I liked that the different modules used the same or similar fact patterns as this enabled me to get familiar with the relevant documents and (fictitious) clients. I thought it worked really well to have Professional Responsibility tasks scattered throughout the module and the class discussions following these tasks were extremely helpful.”

Comments from the Bell Gully in-house evaluation survey included:

“It was valuable to do such practical topics.”

“I felt the programme bridged the gap between studying theory at university and practicing skills in the real world.”

“It was good to have an introduction to what different areas do, before narrowing down into corporate/ litigation/ property.”

“The tutors were great, and this was a great way to start at Bell Gully. We became a group and felt more prepared and comfortable to start work.”

Evening onsites in Auckland and Wellington

Following several requests from students wishing to do the IPLS Profs course but finding it a challenge to take time away from their workplace, IPLS is pleased to offer onsites out of business hours in Auckland and Wellington commencing in March and July 2017. The new onsite option is based on the 18 week course designed for trainees who are employed fulltime.

Trainees will complete their Interviewing, Advising, Negotiation and Advocacy seminars over several evenings from 6pm to 9pm and several Saturdays from 9am to 3pm. This replaces the usual four weeks in the classroom.

“Trainees enrolling in the evening/weekend course option can be assured of receiving the same high quality learning delivered across all our courses,” said IPLS National Director, Bernadette Wilson.

Trainees will still enjoy plenty of opportunity to practice their skills and receive individual feedback prior to their assessments and during the Advocacy seminar, trainees will still complete a full trial.

Employers wishing to know more or interested in receiving the 2017 schedule of evening/weekend courses should email info@ipls.org.nz

Meet our new instructor

To meet the increasing demand for our very popular Profs course, we have a new Auckland-based instructor,  Lois Black.

Lois studied law at the University of Otago after a career in teaching and educational administration in Queensland, the UK and New Zealand. Lois worked as Research Counsel for the Judges at the North Shore and Waitakere District Courts before commencing private practice in civil litigation and dispute resolution. She is experienced in resolving disputes in a wide range of civil matters but she has a particular interest and expertise in building, estate and trust litigation and dispute resolution.

Lois is delighted to combine her love of teaching and legal practice in her role as instructor with IPLS.

IPLS marketing update

IPLS continues to engage with key stakeholders including law students and members of the profession. During the first half of 2016, we completed 11 marketing activities during which we spoke to more than 500 law students from across the six law schools.

Careers Fair
IPLS exhibited at the Careers Fairs in Otago, Canterbury, Victoria, Auckland and Waikato law schools during March and April. We spoke with almost 300 law students all keen to know more about the IPLS Profs course.

2016 IPLS Bridging the Gap launch
In May, we hosted the launch of the IPLS YLC Bridging the Gap mentoring programme at our Wellington learning centre.  This year there are around 50 pairs of law graduates from Victoria University and Wellington lawyers with up to five years’ PQE. The programme provides one-on-one mentoring and is aimed at making the transition from university to the workplace as seamless as possible.

Pizza and Profs
Throughout May IPLS hosted Pizza and Profs lunch-time information sessions at all six law schools. This year we added value with the inclusion of IPLS’ HR Consultant Anne Ratliff who provided a raft of very useful tools and information on Job Hunting. This was particularly well received in all locations with Anne surrounded by law students eager to know more during the informal pizza part of the event. Our message of ‘high-value’; ‘high-quality’ resonated with the students, a large proportion of whom indicated a preference for the IPLS approach.

Pasifika Law & Culture Conference
IPLS was proud to be a sponsor of the 2016 Pasifika Law & Culture Conference held at the University of Victoria on July 4-6. During the conference, IPLS hosted a breakfast for the Pasifika law student body presidents and senior representatives.

IPLS Website – Employers section
The IPLS website features a section aimed specifically at prospective employers of IPLS trainees as well as a Job Board where law firms are able to place Situations Vacant advertisements.

Have your say!

IPLS continually reviews its course to ensure the information provided to trainees is relevant and current. It is equally important to us that we are meeting the needs of the profession.

Would you prefer your graduates to do Profs outside business hours? For example: two or three evenings a week and some Saturdays with the rest online?

What do you think of the new 13-week, full-time course?

If you would like to have your say as to how we could better meet your business needs, please take two minutes to complete the online, anonymous five question Quick Poll here

Or, if you would like your comments on the record please email info@ipls.org.nz

Professional meeting rooms available for hire

Located in the heart of Auckland at 92 Albert Street, the Institute of Professional Legal Studies (IPLS) is pleased to make its dynamic new learning centre available to members of the legal profession for meetings, mediation, training, seminars and other events.

The centre offers:

  • Large classroom – seats 24 (with electronic whiteboard & 55” LCD TV)
  • Small classroom – seats 16 (with electronic whiteboard & 55” LCD TV)
  • Boardroom – seats 10
  • Three meeting rooms for breakout sessions – seat 4-8
  • Courtroom – seats 10
  • Spacious common room for meal breaks

Facilities available

  • Onsite IT specialist to assist with technology set-up
  • Onsite venue manager to assist with catering set-up
  • Catering can be arranged to suit your needs
  • Wireless Internet access
  • Multi-function printer/copier

For availability and pricing please contact IPLS on 09 358 1204 or emailinfo@ipls.org.nz