Glenda Foo was a participant in the 2021 Virtual Law Professional Practicum. Glenda Foo is studying a Bachelor of Law & Commerce (Finance) at University of New South Wales.
Q: Why did you decide to undertake the ACICIS program?
I wanted to broaden my understanding of the Indonesian language, culture, history, and legal system. The opportunity to intern with an Indonesian law firm would provide valuable insights into legal practice in Indonesia.
Q: How have you found the academic components of this virtual program – i.e. the language classes/seminars?
I found the language classes very exciting and the seminars very insightful. Coming out of my comfort zone to speak, read and write a new language was very nerve-wrecking but fulfilling at the same time. The seminars presented by leading lawyers, academics and professionals, sometimes with contrasting perspectives, were both engaging and thought-provoking. The group discussions that followed were very helpful in consolidating our learnings from the seminars and comparing that with the Australian situation or perspective.
Q: What organisation did you intern with?
I interned with AHRP Counsellors at Law. I assisted with research on an international arbitration case, reviewed various agreements and contracts pertaining to different industries, and proofread a publication for the firm. I also had the opportunity to present a topic on Indonesian law to the partners and associates.
Q: How have you found the work culture (albeit online) of your host organisation? How is it different to work experience in Australia?
The work culture was not very different to Australia. The partners and associates were very supportive, nurturing, and open to answering my questions.
Q: What are the main skills you have learnt during your virtual internship?
Cross-cultural communication and empathy.
Q: What did you find to be the most rewarding part of this virtual experience?
Being able to share my experiences and perspectives growing up in Singapore and studying in Australia with the partners and associates at AHRP, getting to know them and listening to their perspectives and experiences, and engaging them in discussions on various legal and social issues.
Q: Were you able to learn about the Indonesian culture from this virtual program? If yes, how was this achieved?
Definitely! The language classes and seminars provided a very good foundation to understanding the Indonesian culture drawn from its significant historical and political events and social, geographical, and religious factors. These learnings were further reinforced through discussions with the partners and associates at AHRP who shared the Indonesian perspective on current events and social issues.
Q: How will the virtual internship benefit or influence your future career?
The virtual internship has provided me with a better understanding of the Indonesian culture, and the economic and social factors that influence the country’s decisions and perspectives. I have also gained an understanding and appreciation of the Indonesian legal system and familiarised myself with Indonesian legislation, regulations, and court system. These learnings have equipped me with the skills and confidence to interact and work with Indonesian clients, counsels, and counterparts in the future. The professional networks that I’ve made through this virtual internship will also be valuable going forward.
Q: Would you recommend this virtual program to your friends?
Q: Favourite Indonesian word/phrase:
Apa kabar? (how are you?)
Q: Describe your experience of the virtual internship program in three words:
Eye-opening, rewarding and humbling