Buckinghamshire’s new High Sheriff, Debbie Brock, has awarded certificates to recognize students’ contribution to a Citizens Advice project offering help to local people.
After completing online training and a seminar with Citizens Advice Bucks and the university’s head of clinical legal education, Julie O’Shea, the students were able to organize free advice sessions to help members of the local community .
The outreach project with Citizens Advice Bucks is part of a wide range of extracurricular clinical legal education experiences offered by the university’s law school.
The Associate Dean of Law, Professor Adolfo Paolini, and the Director of the Law Clinic, Dr Jocelynne Scutt, joined students at the Vice-Chancellor’s Residence, Ondaatje Hall, for the awards ceremony last week .
Julie O’Shea said: “The Law Clinic offers free, confidential and independent advice sessions to members of the Buckingham community on a range of consumer issues.
“The project enhances students’ professional development in several areas, including legal research, case analysis, communicating with clients, and deciding solutions for next steps.
“The concept has helped build community relationships, benefiting the general public with access to advice and justice and providing students with the opportunity to help overcome real-life challenges and practice their skills in academic practice, thereby strengthening their future aspirations.”
High Sheriff Debbie Brock said: ‘It was great meeting everyone and hearing about the wonderful work you will be doing in and around Buckingham to help Citizens Advice Bucks provide advice to local people.
Citizens Advice Bucks chair Jane Mordue, who lives in Buckingham, said: “Congratulations to these amazing volunteers.
“Solving problems with empathy – what a great skill for young lawyers to learn.
“The Citizens Advice Bucks program is helping lawyers of the future learn the realities of dealing with clients – a ‘win-win’, as it helps us deal with an ever-increasing number of people turning to CAB.
“We help people get their lives back on track, which is especially important in these uncertain days.”
Citizens Advice Bucks is an independent charity that provides free, confidential and impartial advice and support.