What is ‘Vitality’ all About?
The Vitality for Life & Law program aims to provide you with the opportunity to learn life and work skills which will enable you to thrive in your personal and academic life, and to build a successful and sustainable career in the legal profession. The Faculty of Law initiated the program in response to growing evidence and a heightened awareness of the rate of psychological distress among law students and legal professionals.
Through a series of evidence-based, interactive and experiential weekly seminars you will learn how to optimise your performance at university, and in life, and sustain your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual wellbeing.
The seminar series will support you to:
- learn personal care strategies for minimising stress, maintaining a healthy lifestyle and avoiding ‘burnout’ - both at university and at work
- learn to enhance your physical health and wellbeing
- build a supportive environment with other law students
- understand the factors that can contribute to ‘downward spirals’ and ways to bounce back
- develop psychological resilience, communication skills and reflective learning skills
- strengthen your emotional intelligence, including self awareness
You will be encouraged to share your own experiences as well as practice some techniques and skills such as short (a few minutes) mindfulness techniques. You will be provided with a resource booklet, access to relevant resources and encouraged to practice simple techniques and exercises during the week between sessions.
When & Where
General information 'try it and see' session in Week 4
Thursday, 16 August 2012 from 12.30 pm - 1.30 pm in Room 67.208.
The program involves a commitment to a series of one-hour seminars from Week 5 of Spring Session (but we hope that the benefits you derive from participating in Vitality will stay with you for life!).
Time: Thursdays 12.30 pm – 1.30 pm in Room 67.208. Feel free to bring your lunch with you.
The registration deadline is Monday, 20 August 2012 (Week 5).
Keep in mind that participation in Vitality for Life & Law is voluntary - you may withdraw at any time (though we hope you won’t want to!).
Please contact Susan Boyd on (02) 4221 5116 or email@example.com
The program designer – Holly Kneebone
Holly is an accomplished coach, trainer and facilitator. She started her professional career as a lawyer before lecturing law students at Notre Dame University. She has spent the past 12 years working with lawyers and partners to unlock barriers and optimise their performance and wellbeing. She has a thorough understanding of the professional and personal demands of the complex working environment of law firms, having worked most recently with Allens Arthur Robinson, Freehills and Blake Dawson. She understands first-hand the attributes, mindsets, skills and behaviours that are required to create a successful career in law – and to sustain that career over the long term.
Your Facilitator – Judith Marychurch
Judith is the Associate Dean - Teaching and Learning in the Faculty of Law. She has been working in the area of student well-being since 2009, and successfully obtained a $25,000 grant and additional funding to develop and pilot Vitality for Life & Law in 2010. Judith completed a “train the trainer’ program with Holly Kneebone as part of the pilot and has been running Vitality for Life and Law since Spring session 2010. Judith is also the author of the Good Practice Guide (Bachelor of Laws): Self-Management (Threshold Learning Outcome 6), written to support the implementation of the Threshold Learning Outcomes for the Bachelor of Laws (LLB), which were produced as part of the Learning and Teaching Academic Standards Project: Bachelor of Laws Learning & Teaching Academic Standards Statement December 2010, led by Professors Sally Kift (QUT) and Mark Israel (UWA). Threshold Learning Outcome 6: Self-management incorporates both personal and professional development, to which Vitality for Life and Law contributes.
Vitality is proudly supported by:
- University of Wollongong - Educational Strategies Development Fund
- RMB Lawyers
Feedback from previous participants...
What made Vitality attractive to you initially?
“I had heard good things from fellow students who had completed the program”
“I was finding it stressful switching between Law and my other degree, and I decided I needed to manage my time more and learn how to keep myself relaxed”
“It was the first university program available to me which was not academic in nature, but rather focused on the necessary skills to survive – both mentally and physically – in the course of one’s degree. It’s very rare to sit in a seminar room without having to discuss the law, and that’s a great feeling!”
“I had trouble dealing with stress. Vitality sounded like it could help out.”
“During a stressful time it seemed like a good program to be involved in to learn some tools and techniques to handle stress effectively. I had been struggling with time-management and had begun to develop unhealthy habits for coping with stress. The program seemed really beneficial and not overly ‘intense. ‘ “
“It was appealing because it was the first stress management type course I have seen at the uni which is so readily accessible.”
“The prospect of learning how to not just cope in my studies (and ultimately the profession, but to learn how to thrive.”
What made you keep coming back?
“I felt so relaxed after every session and as Vitality continued, I felt more comfortable in opening up in front of the group.”
“The material made a lot of sense and everyone there was lovely.”
“The techniques we learned each week worked!”
“Learning something new each week and checking in with everyone and being able to just spend one hour of one day concentrating on yourself and tapping into how you were feeling was excellent. We rarely stop for a minute during our busy schedules and having that time to yourself, but sharing it with others and knowing you weren’t alone was really great. The group and especially Judith, were great – very friendly, welcoming, motivated yet relaxed and still really willing to help with options and answers and contributions of thoughts and suggestions.”
“The class itself has a great atmosphere and it was delivered in a constructive way.”
“The people in the group- it was great to make connections. Also the content of the course – it was useful, so I wanted to learn more.”