For law students Montana and Louise, the opportunity to travel to Myanmar was one they jumped at.
As part of a three week study tour, they will join law students from other Australian universities, learning about Myanmar, its culture and its legal system.
They will be accompanied by Swinburne law lecturer Jonathan Liljeblad, whose current research interests are focussed on Myanmar, its natural and cultural heritage and the role of law.
The study tour is being run through BABSEACLE, an Australian registered non-profit legal education and access to justice organization established to further strengthen legal education and access to justice collaborations between Australia and the South East Asia region.
The students will spend time acclimatizing to the country in Myanmar’s largest city, Yangon, before being posted to a university where they will teach classes in English, to help Myanmar students improve their language skills.
Invaluable international experience
Bachelor of Laws student Montana Pirruccio says she hopes the study tour will give her an international perspective of the role of law in society.
“I decided to partake in the BABSEACLE International Legal Studies Externship Clinic as I wanted the opportunity to make a practical impact on the lives of those living without access to legal justice,” Ms Pirruccio says.
“I believe the program will provide me with the ability to undertake the remainder of my studies with an open mind and the determination to improve the ability for individuals to access legal justice worldwide.
“I hope to acquire the necessary skills and insight required to expand my impact on individuals around me, regardless of whether it be when I graduate or during my time at Swinburne.”
Foundation Dean of the Law School, Professor Dan Hunter, says the Swinburne Law School is always looking for opportunities the students can undertake that will complement their studies.
“We’re very excited that Jonathan is taking our students to work in Myanmar,” Professor Hunter says.
“This is an incredible opportunity to make a difference in one of the fastest developing countries on earth.
“The law school is deeply committed to providing opportunities to our students to work in Asia and internationally. Our students in Myanmar will begin to understand the different legal system in Myanmar, and also see some of the challenges to the rule of law that transitioning societies face.”
Myanmar, also known as Burma, is bordered by Bangladesh, India, China, Laos and Thailand.