Dulan Perera

Barristers/Legal Firms
Summer 2018

Over the summer period of 2017/2018, I undertook a legal internship through the Aurora Internship Program. Aurora is a fantastic organisation that provides students and graduates opportunities to work within an organisation that is involved in the Indigenous sector and gain valuable practical experience.

I was lucky enough to be placed with Barristers Andrew Collett and Simon Blewitt in Adelaide. I was exposed to a large range of work from the stolen generation to contractual matters. Being on placement with Andrew was a fantastic way to undertake practical legal work and expanding my legal knowledge. Practical tasks involved drafting, research, note taking, making chronologies, understanding the briefs for various matters and developing legal arguments. Being placed with Andrew also provided some unique opportunities and a whole range of practical experiences. A lot was learnt through observation as well, such as, attending court, client interviews, attending stakeholder meetings, defence meetings and meetings with consultants. Most of these experiences were a first for me and I was able to learn a great deal through observation. Being able to observe such a senior and experienced legal practitioner undertake these tasks was a truly invaluable opportunity.

The Aurora internship is a great way for students to learn and develop their practical skills. Law degrees can be heavily theoretical and it is great to apply this theory to practice before working as a graduate and the Aurora internship provides the perfect opportunity. Personally, this internship has opened my eyes as to how much I can help people and contribute to social justice when I become a practitioner. I would love to undertake the work that Andrew does as it is extremely rewarding to know that you are making a difference and that the skills you have learnt are being put to help many people that are in great need for justice and legal representation.

If you want to be supervised by very experienced, friendly and down to earth barristers who make working enjoyable, then Selby Street Chambers is the place for you. Selby Street Chambers was a fantastic place to undertake the internship; Andrew, Simon and Megan are the most incredible people you will meet. They are very generous and always willing to help, making a fantastic work environment. Working under such supervisors make the experience even more valuable and enjoyable, in fact I enjoyed it so much that I would always get to the chambers at least half an hour earlier than I needed to.

I would like to thank Andrew, Simon, Megan and the Aurora Internship team for giving me the opportunity to undertake such an interesting internship where I have gained and improved so many practical legal skills and broadened my legal knowledge. I would recommend the Aurora Internship Program to anyone interested in gaining valuable legal experience and learning more about Indigenous legal issues and social justice.