Message from the Chairperson

My dear law students


What an honour it is to be elected as Chairperson of the Juridical Society (JV) for 2014/2015. I am so excited to get another chance to serve the law students of Stellenbosch University for another year and working with a group of 8 other dynamic leaders to serve you (and yes, there are women in this year’s JV).

The JV serves and represents the students to ensure that the motto ‘Non Scholae, Sed Vitae Discimus’ (“we learn not for school, but for life”) is not just another Latin phrase that we use to impress other people at Bohemia but a way of life. This means that the JV is interested in much more than just representing the student’s academic interests (although this is our primary function), but also to expose students to every aspect of the legal professional world possible and equipping students with the necessary skills to flourish in life after university.

The JV aims to provide for the general wellbeing and the empowerment of its students through facilitating and organising events, functions and initiatives that enrich the student experience beyond those weighty textbooks. There is a purpose and an enriching experience behind every lunch-time talk, faculty function, Law Dance, moot competition and party bus (trust me, that party bus taught me many a valuable life lesson!). It upsets me how some law students can go through their whole university career without taking the opportunity of attending this wide array of functions. I motivate each and every student to attend each and every event possible in order to add to your personal development.

The 2014/2015 JV plans to increase the law student’s exposure beyond being an attorney at a large commercial firm through some new initiatives that it hopes to bring in 2015. We will also try to tackle the concern that some legal professionals have that students leave university without certain non-scholarly skills. But these ideas will remain closely guarded secrets for a little more time, so please keep your ear to the ground.

We also encourage interaction with our fellow students to hear your views and ideas about making our time at this Faculty even better. I invite you to talk to myself, or any of the members of your JV about any issues or suggestions you might have – the door to our closet-sized office is always open (metaphorically, but we shall try to be easy to reach).

The media attention around the trial of Oscar Pistorius and the constant questions I am sure you were asked about it reminds us of our responsibility as young jurists to uphold the values of the Constitution and to educate fellow South Africans about the law. Even if you will not be an attorney or an advocate, keep in mind that you could be a South African’s only exposure to the Constitution or the laws of this country. The JV commits to empowering the law students of Stellenbosch University in order to move South Africa forward to greater heights. Do yourself a favour and take every opportunity this Faculty, the JV, the Moot Society and the Stellenbosch SLSJ give you to make you a better person when you leave than what you were when you first walked into our Ou Hoofgebou.

Thala Msutu

Chairperson 2014/2015