UWS law students shine on the international stage

Date: 12/05/2009

A team of three law students from the University of Western Sydney have just taken out top mooting awards in Australia and, under the international spotlight, impressively argued before a collection of the Commonwealths' most prominent and luminary jurists.

The three students, Jonathan Adamopoulos, Matthew Carr and Tim McGrath, finished third at the recent Commonwealth Moot Competition after the narrowest of semi-final losses to the University of Hong Kong, which finished second overall behind the University of Pretoria, South Africa.

The students, having won the 2008 Australian Law Students' Association Mooting Competition, brilliantly represented Australia and the University of Western Sydney at the 16th Commonwealth Law Conferences' 2009 Commonwealth Law Moot Competition in Hong Kong in April 2009.

Head of the School of Law, Professor Michael Adams, says this is the first time UWS has represented Australia at the international competition.

'The University is extremely proud of our three top mooters. This outstanding result representing the University and Australia at this prestigious competition demonstrates the high standards of mooting across the Commonwealth. On behalf of the School of Law, we congratulate these three young men on their achievement.'

The team's coach, John Juriansz, lecturer in the School of Law, is equally proud.

'As their coach, I would like to say how impressed I am of the skilful intelligence, professionalism, courtesy, humour and work ethic of these three young men. Their considerable accomplishments to date are but few compared to what they will achieve in their professional careers to come,' says Mr Juriansz.

'The competition featured the best of the best of the Commonwealth - including the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, India, Sri Lanka, South Africa as well as Hong Kong and Singapore. Each competing team earned the right to represent their region after winning their own domestic moot competitions.'

The team was invited to the international event after winning the Australian Law Students' Association Mooting Competition in 2008 where they competed against mooters from law schools across Australia and New Zealand. Over one hundred members of Australia's legal and academic communities witnessed the event.

At the Commonwealth competition, the UWS students were privileged to moot before, and withstand the most ardent of cross-examinations from, benches with chief justices from courts of several Commonwealth nations including the United Kingdom, Canada, the Falkland Islands & British Indian Ocean Territory and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.

The mooting problem featured complex and novel legal puzzles on the law of bribery and corruption, equity, misfeasance in public office, derivative actions and more.

In the 2008 Australian competition, Jonathan Adamopoulos also took out the honourable Best Oralist Award for the second year running. He has recently commenced work as a law graduate at the top-tier commercial firm, Allens Arthur Robinson. Tim McGrath and Matt Carr are continuing law students who are also engaged in part time legal employment at Gye Associates and Coleman & Greig, respectively.

'Mooting develops essential skills that make a law student become a lawyer. You develop problem solving skills, advocacy and the flexibility that goes hand in hand with the profession,' says Mr Adamopoulos.

'UWS is a pioneer among Australian universities in making mooting part of the curriculum. The law courses at UWS are career and industry focused, and not solely theory-based. They include invaluable mooting and advocacy elective subjects taught by the former Justice of the Supreme Court of NSW, the Hon. Brian Sully QC.'

The trip was made possible through support and sponsorship from the NSW Law Society and NSW Bar Association, as well as the UWS School of Law.



Media Officer

Kristy Gleeson
02 9678 7085, 0414 018 498