I knew going to ANU College of Law would benefit me professionally. What I didn't know, was that the connections made at university would continue to shape my life to this day.
ANU sets you up for success. It's what opened the door to my first job working at a law firm in Sydney and, with a few stops along the way, finally led me to working for the World Bank. But nothing compares to the fact that ANU also set me up to meet my wife, Kim Harvey, who I've shared this adventure with since.
Kim and I had shared some classes throughout our respective degrees and we would cross paths each day as I caught the bus home. It took a while, but I once went up to Kim to ask her a question, just as an excuse to talk. She said 'I don't know' and went back to her work.
When I finally built the courage to ask her on a date it was our final year at ANU and we were in the library. I bravely approached Kim, asked for her email address and walked straight back to my computer - to ask her out over email. Luckily, she said yes, but many years later we laugh together at our nervous email exchange when Kim was already standing right in front of me. Some years later I proposed to Kim a week before we moved to London together, and the following year we got married back in Canberra.
Since then, we've grown together, professionally and personally. Kim, after a number of years practicing law has moved into legal recruiting and professional development. I practice law at the World Bank, where I created a Fellowship for ANU law students. Whenever we have visiting fellows over for dinner there are two things guaranteed: that we serve lamb, because we know how important a taste of home is when you're far from those you love; and that our guest's attention inevitably turns to Kim, to soak up additional career advice from her perspective as a former lawyer with legal recruiting and professional development experience.
The ANU College of Law Fellowship is something both Kim and I wish existed when we were in law school. For me, creating the opportunity and connecting with the students who take it, is the next best thing. I tell all the fellows: go into things with enthusiasm and an open mind; it is easy to be pigeon holed and have a narrow work-focus but take chances, look around and don't be afraid to do something different. Push yourself out of your comfort zone because, whether it be moving overseas to work or asking a girl out in the library, as uncomfortable as it may be at the time - you won't regret it.
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