New Colombo Plan - Connect to Australia’s future - study in the region.

Virtual Law Professional Practicum

Kaitlin Taylor was a participant in the 2022 Virtual Law Professional Practicum. Kaitlin is studying a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of Commerce at University of New South Wales. Kaitlin received a $3000 New Colombo Plan mobility grant to support her participation on this program.

Q: Why did you decide to undertake the ACICIS program?

I have studied Indonesian language and culture before and was very excited to learn more through the ACICIS internship program. The ACICIS internship program was highly recommended to me by a past participant as an amazing opportunity, so I was very excited to experience it for myself!

Q: Did you receive a New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant? Do you think the NCP is an important initiative? If yes, why? The NCP is a signature initiative of the Australian Government which aims to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific in Australia by supporting Australian undergraduates on experiences such as the Virtual Professional Practica.

Yes. The NCP initiative is incredibly important in promoting intercultural understanding between Australia and Indonesia and allowing students to learn more about one of our closest neighbours to help build upon this strong relationship.

Q: How have you found the academic components of this virtual program – i.e. the language classes/seminars?

For me, the language classes were the highlight of this program! My teacher was supportive and encouraging and I have improved my Indonesian so much. The seminars were also interesting and provided unique insight into contemporary issues shaping the Indonesian legal system.

Q: What organisation did you intern with? 

I interned at LOH & Partners, a commercial law firm. My main responsibilities here involved drafting commercial contracts and meeting with clients.

Q: How have you found the work culture (albeit online) of your host organisation? How is it different to work experience in Australia?

My mentor built a very supportive work culture because he was kind, patient, and always willing to offer advice. I was encouraged to be independent and take initiative on tasks but always had the opportunity to ask for help where I needed it.

The biggest difference I noticed between the work cultures in Australia and Indonesia is the meaning of time. While Australian work culture is often very strict about meeting times, Indonesia has a cultural characteristic of jam karet whereby time is a much more lenient construct.

Q: What are the main skills you have learnt during your virtual internship?

This was my first experience writing a contract in accordance with Indonesian law, so it was interesting to research Indonesian contract law and be able to implement these skills in a practical and useful way.

Q: What did you find to be the most rewarding part of this virtual experience?

I loved the language courses. I found it so rewarding to immerse myself in another language and truly look at life through the lens of another language and culture.

Q: Were you able to learn about the Indonesian culture from this virtual program? If yes, how was this achieved?

Yes definitely. Even though the program was virtual, ACICIS made sure that we were able to deeply engage and learn about Indonesian culture. We attended virtual field trips and extracurricular activities that each presented a new element of Indonesian culture.

Q: How will the virtual internship benefit or influence your future career?

The skills and insight I have gained from this virtual internship have improved my cross-cultural awareness and communication. I feel much more prepared to work as a future lawyer having participated in this unique experience.

Q: Would you recommend this virtual program to your friends?

I would definitely recommend this program to my friends, particularly if they are already interested in learning about another language/culture!

Q: Favourite Indonesian word/phrase:

Berpengetahuan luas (and it describes how I feel after completing the ACICIS virtual internship!)

Q: Describe your experience of the virtual internship program in three words: