Melbourne Law academic named Scholar of the Year

Dr Mark McMillan, a senior lecturer in Melbourne Law School, has been named Scholar of the Year at this year’s National National Aboriginies and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) awards, held in Perth.

The annual National NAIDOC awards recognize the outstanding contributions that Indigenous Australians make to improve the lives of Indigenous people or to promote Indigenous issues in the wider community.

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In accepting the award, Dr McMillan paid tribute to his grandmother as one of his key inspirations.  “She was very clear that education was the key to opportunity and the key to being a responsible adult.  She wanted—she demanded—that education be taken seriously,” he said.

A Wiradjuri man from Trangie, NSW, Dr McMillan joined the Law School of the University of Melbourne in 2011 as a specialist on Indigenous law, property law and public law. He is a board member of the Trangie Local Aboriginal Land Council and a Trustee of the Roberta Sykes Education Foundation.

Dr McMillan said his experiences with the law while growing up also inspired him to follow a path into legal academia. “Growing up, I saw some of the worst aspects of the law and the legal system, merely because of where we lived and saw the effects of policing, the courts and jails; however, I also got to see and experience the law as a site of hope, a site of recognition, a site for the articulation of our needs, our aspirations and our sights; a site for our stories.

“My plan is to educate the students at Melbourne Law School about the effects the legal system has had and continues to have on Indigenous existence and experience.”

Dean of the Law School, Prof Carolyn Evans, said the entire faculty was proud of Dr McMillan’s achievement.  “Mark’s colleagues are delighted to hear about this national recognition for the importance of the work that he is undertaking.”

Curious about studying law at Melbourne Law School?

Program: Juris Doctor
Location: Melbourne, Victoria
Semester intake: February
Duration: 3 years (standard course structure); 2 or 2.5 years (accelerated course structure)
Application deadline: November 30, 2013

Entry Requirements
Melbourne JD applicants must have
  • completed an undergraduate degree in any discipline; and
  • completed the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT).

The Melbourne JD has three selection criteria:
  1. Academic results achieved in previous tertiary studies
  2. The LSAT score
  3. The applicant’s personal statement

A Melbourne JD application must include a personal statement of up to 850 words. It should emphasize any aspect of your personal history that may enhance your application, including extracurricular activity, community involvement, work experience, caregiver responsibilities, relevant personal characteristics and any outstanding achievements. Statements should be typewritten, the pages numbered, and the applicant’s name and date of birth should appear on each page.

Students who have not yet completed an undergraduate degree may apply, as long as they will have graduated prior to commencing the Melbourne JD program.


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