Pro Bono and Clinical Legal Education during periods of disruption

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


Student pro bono activities and law clinics have traditionally relied on face-to-face, point in time modes of service delivery. However, the COVID-19 pandemic brought into sharp focus the need for conventional student pro bono legal services and clinical legal education programs to be adaptive to disruptive influences. While many legal service providers were quick to pivot to new modes of service delivery, the challenge for legal academics and clinicians was how to successfully adapt student programs in a way that would continue to assist these organisations in a time of crises, whilst maintaining an optimal student experience.
This paper considers the challenges faced by two university pro bono and CLE programs during the COVID-19 pandemic, how they were addressed, and the lessons learned. It looks at technology and innovation in service delivery and how pro bono student services and CLE programs can enhance student digital literacy, a skill considered essential for the 21st century lawyer. It also reflects upon the value students placed on being able to continue these ‘real’ experiences during periods of enforced isolation and the positive impact this appeared to have on student wellness.
Period30 Sept 2022
Held atCentre for Professional Legal Education
Degree of RecognitionNational