University of Calgary

Law students learn from an expert about crossing over into politics

UToday HomeMarch 19, 2013

By Ali Abel

“The relationship between law and politics is a very real and constant dialogue,” MP and Liberal Leader Bob Rae told a group of University of Calgary law students. Photo by Riley Brandt“The relationship between law and politics is a very real and constant dialogue,” MP and Liberal Leader Bob Rae told a group of University of Calgary law students. Photo by Riley BrandtLaw and politics often go hand in hand, and skills from each profession can be used to complement a career in the other. Bob Rae, a member of parliament and Interim Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, is a perfect example.

Rae spoke to a group of University of Calgary students on Friday, March 15, as part of the Faculty of Law’s Politics and Law event, designed to educate students on how to combine their education in law with their interest in politics.

Rae told the group he made the transition from law student to lawyer to active politician very quickly. In fact, he graduated from law school and immediately ran for parliament. He was called to the bar a year later and quickly saw the connection between disciplines.

“Being an MP or working for an MLA or MP is like working in a legal aid office,” said Rae. “In both cases you’re dealing with people and their individual cases and working out the best solution for all parties involved. The relationship between law and politics is a very real and constant dialogue.”

Rae was not the only guest to provide advice on bridging an education in law with an interest in politics. Chima Nkemdirim, chief of staff to Mayor Naheed Nenshi, was also on hand to talk about how to get involved in politics in different ways.

His advice to students: “Volunteer in the political process. You can learn so much and you really get to understand who politicians hire — people they trust.”

 

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