I’ve taken on a teaching position at [Makkas University], which is one of the local universities in the area. I haven’t given up on being an employment lawyer– but I’ll be doing employment law 4 days a week, with teaching occupying my tuesdays. I’ll be teaching [Criminal Law 101], which will introduce first year law students to the Australian crim law system.
It’s a huge opportunity. Career wise, it’s a bit strategic as well– working at a small firm, I have little or no job security if, for example, my boss ever decides to pack up the business or gets somehow incapacitated.
Teaching pays less than being a solicitor, to be sure, but to be honest, this is the kind of work that I wanted to get into in the first place when I first started doing law school. You’d be surprised, but the fact is that I got High Distinctions in all my crim classes (the equivalent of A+ ranks in North America), and it was because I found it to be a really interesting subject that played into a lot of my work in healthcare.
Criminal law is a multidimensional subject, of which most people only know one dimension of– the evening television version. That’s all sensational stuff like murder trials, lumped together with all your crime television shows, like CSI, Dexter, Law & Order, etc.
The fact of the matter is that crime is not a social “problem”– it’s a symptom of underlying intrastructural and economic problems. Television would often have you think however that the criminals are different from us, and that it’s a black and white thing that people who do bad things should be locked up.
The truth is, most types of crime are relative, drawn on arbitrary boundaries that serve the haves and keep down the have-nots. Criminal sanctions are not applied equally, and the fact that laws develop in real time through push and pull make it one fascinating mess of a beast, which can often yield some incredulous results.
I think that the best way for me to learn something is to teach it. It’ll be fun to start teaching again. Granted– teaching law in an actual university law school promises to be a completely different thing from teaching English as a second language.