The Competition Commission recently recommended to the Competition Tribunal that the proposed large merger – in terms of which Tsogo Sun is to acquire a 40% stake in Sun International's cash-spinning GrandWest casino in Cape Town and the smaller Golden Valley Casino in Worcester – be prohibited.
The graduates of 2014 join the legal profession at a time of change. The Legal Practices Bill is set to change the legal landscape in many ways and only time will tell how successful it will be. A very South African expression "we live in interesting times" (borrowed from the English expression, which is, apparently, adapted from a traditional Chinese curse "May you live in interesting times"), has been used repeatedly over at least the past two decades and its use does not look likely to diminish any time soon. In 2013 without prejudice carried a feature on the changing legal landscape as seen by the corporate law firms.
The competition to secure articles of clerkship is fierce. The fact that most law firms target students in their second year of studies means that it is increasingly important for them to excel as early as possible. Consistently high academic performance is the first means of differentiation as this communicates how well candidates understand the content of their studies. However, candidates who can balance this with university, sport or cultural involvement have a distinct advantage. Demonstrable leadership qualities and resilience complete the "all-rounder" package that law firms look for.
"Taking advantage" is a phrase I hear a lot when lawyers discuss their work. I think it is linked to the idea of lawyers as business people concerned with competiveness and commerciality but it manifests in the restless and energetic pursuit of getting the best possible outcome for each client on each occasion. Not much wrong with this perhaps but is it the duty of a lawyer to take advantage of every given situation?
If others were to study your inbox and schedule…what would they say about you? In many ways, the approach you take to your inbox and what you allow into your schedule is determining your life (both professional and personal). Therefore, others can infer a great deal about you by the number and quality of your received and sent e-mails, as well as the appointments and meetings you have in your schedule. Would you feel comfortable having others see what is in your inbox and schedule?
Andrew Giliam graduated magna cum laude. In his penultimate LLB year Giliam received prizes for Interpretation of Statutes and Corporation Law and for final year he received the Spoor & Fisher prize for Intellectual Property Law and a Class Medal for Administrative Law. He was on the Dean's Merit List in the three years of undergraduate degree and the Faculty of Law from 2013 to 2014.
Samantha Bonato graduated summa cum laude. Samantha Bonato says she studied law is because, despite never having a particularly big interest in the law she knew that it was well suited to her personality. "From a very young age I have had a strong sense of right and wrong as well as what is ethical and unethical. I also have the ability to make a point through the use of words and good argument and my friends, peers and family picked up on this and always told me I should become a lawyer." She adds that once she started studying, she knew she had found her niche and that she had made the best decision of her life.
Jaloudi Badenhorst comments that it was her love of discipline that prompted her to study law. She quotes Mortimer J. Adler "True freedom is impossible without a mind made free by discipline." Badenhorst says of her degree that with hindsight she would have preferred to complete a BComm LLB rather than the straight LLB. She most enjoyed Private International Law. She tutored Introduction to Law in 2013 and was a senior tutor for Introduction to Law in 2014.
Pieter Carnelley graduated cum laude. Pieter Carnelley started his studies with a BA(hons) (Latin) and was on the Dean's List for the second semesters of his third and final year. "Law was always an interest," he says, "and so it was the obvious choice to major in for my BA." His favourite subjects were sentencing, jurisprudence and income tax." When Carnelley started University he decided to start playing piano and did the various grades with the Royal School of Music. "And in my final year I started doing woodwork," he says adding that he is very passionate about music of all forms, and also plays the guitar.
Brendan Beech graduated cum laude. Beech completed a BComm Law degree, majoring in Law and Economics before reading his LLB. He says he studied chartered accounting for two years before he realised he didn't enjoy dealing purely with numbers. "I remembered that my English teacher at high school advised that I should study Law as I had a way with words. Being a lawyer requires much interaction with people and it is this aspect of the discipline which I really enjoy."
Belinda had her mind set on studying law from a young age and says, "I could not settle for anything else. I turned down two different opportunities to study for other degrees." She adds that studying became a delicate balancing act because of her other roles as a wife and mother to her two daughters. Because of her other commitments she did not take part in many extra mural Activities. "My family is my support system and their support and understanding made me more determined. As difficult as it was, it was all worth it in the end and if I were ever to have to do it over again, I would."
Michelle completed a BCom degree before her LLB. "I enjoyed all my subjects," says Botha, "but if one subject had to be distinguished from the others it would be Insolvency Law." Botha would not change what she studied. "Now that I started working as a Candidate Attorney, I am convinced that law was the right degree for me," she says. Botha served on the Student Representative Council of the NWU Potchefstroom Campus with the portfolio Academics, during her third year of studies. "I also completed a part time interior design course through my University, during my final year," she adds.
Marli Ackerman graduated cum laude. Marli Ackerman was on the Dean's List for the four years of her undergraduate LLB. She was awarded the Phatshoane Henney Medal for LLB cum laude "I knew I had strong problem solving skills," she says of her decision to study law. "I also wanted to study a degree that would challenge me intellectually.
Tamzyn Cooper graduated cum laude. Tamzyn Cooper will be awarded the Phatshoane-Henney Medal for students who obtain their LLB degrees with distinction. She was on the Dean's list in both her penultimate and final years. Cooper first completed an undergraduate Bachelor of Arts degree majoring in Legal Theory and Psychology. "I wanted to study law from before I can remember, I think this was very influenced by TV shows such as Law and Order and Boston Legal. When I started studying I wanted to go into criminal law and help save the world one conviction at a time. However, I realised that I do not have the stomach for such a personal and harsh area of law.
Jason Fraser graduated cum laude. Jason Fraser, from a young age felt an inner conviction to study law. "I cannot point to any specific event or factor that triggered that conviction, but I knew with certainty that I wanted to study law. I just seemed to have an innate passion for and desire to study the law. And when I grew older and realised I had no exceptional mathematical or scientific skills, it was very convenient that my desire to study law would not require me to possess any exceptional abilities in those fields. So I'm lucky I didn't want to study medicine or accounting instead."