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The Honourable Michael Kirby - Judge in Residence at Bond University

Bond University law students have already put their case before one of Australia’s most respected judges, with the Honourable Michael Kirby visiting the university last week.

The retired High Court Judge, renowned human rights expert and prominent social advocate attended the campus in his capacity as the Bond University Judge in Residence to judge the Miscarriages of Justice Mooting Competition and the Great Animal Welfare Debate.

From his appointment as Deputy President of the Australian Conciliation and Arbitration Commission in 1975 through to his retirement from the High Court of Australia in 2009, Justice Kirby left an enduring mark on the legal profession as Australia's longest serving judge.

"I have been coming to Bond University for over 10 years now, annually every November," Justice Kirby said.

"It is a wonderful time of year to visit because November is jacaranda season and it is beautiful to see the campus in bloom, before getting down to the important business of working with the law students."

Professor Nick James, Acting Executive Dean, said Justice Kirby's annual visits to Bond were an invaluable benefit to the students, and to the University's Faculty of Law as a whole.

"Justice Kirby's long and successful career as a High Court judge means he can impart significant wisdom to Bond's law students, aspiring lawyers who are yet to embark upon their legal careers," Professor James said.

"This year we introduced an event called 'Two Minutes with Kirby' where students gave a two minute presentation on a topic of their choice and received feedback directly from Justice Kirby, which was an invaluable experience.

"His presence on campus every November really enhances the student experience at Bond University."

Justice Kirby recommended to students that they apply diligence and concentration to their studies to achieve success.

"I encourage all students to be 'joiners'. It's easy for clever students to sail through university, but I always found it enriching to get involved with societies, student councils, and other various causes while on campus," Justice Kirby said.

"Apply yourself. Understand what the law says, think about what the overall principles of the law are, ask questions of the law where necessary, and ensure reforms are in line with changes to the times.

"A questioning society of lawyers is a very powerful thing."

Justice Kirby said the consistently high calibre of the Bond students' mooting skills was what set the University apart from other institutions.

"Watching the students who were mooting for the first time was terrifying - they were so outstanding I can't imagine how good they will be by the time they graduate!" he said.

"Mooting is like starring in a drama where you are both the writer and the actor - it's wonderful preparation for life as a lawyer. Bond University is producing exceptional advocates who will go on to great success."


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