The mature age experience: I (by Dioala Crompton)

The study of Law has always been an interest of mine that I decided to pursue in my mid 40’s. It can be fair to say that at least some of us who have viewed popular legal programs have momentarily fantasised about sporting a tailored suit while representing a debatable character in a well-orchestrated court room. However, the reality is a challenge that far exceeds that ideology regardless of age, for those who choose to hurl themselves into the path of this profession. A rather selective use of words when often the word hurling is associated with throwing oneself into to something detrimental and hence best describing the mature age student.

I began law studies a year and half ago and due to work commitments as a business owner my only viable option was to consider doing the degree off campus. This in itself requires some extraordinary level of discipline and a topic for another discussion. Mature age students often return to study with some trepidation not to mention ridicule by heartless friends and family, who point out extenuating factors that include work commitments, family, extracurricular activities and perhaps a midlife crisis. Mature age students have a level of expectation thrust upon them, not only from external factors, but from within themselves to succeed and make the whole journey appear effortless. One has to eliminate this sense of obligatory pressure and use that energy to engineer a realistic balance which can see the study of law as uplifting and empowering even as a mature age student.

When embarking on this journey I made a decision early on to not focus on all the negatives that others would point out on a regular basis, but instead the positive aspects as I saw them. I have always been the flip side person you know the individual who sees the glass half full rather than half empty. Every person has a different perspective on the same idea and you need not engage in the negative of those perceptions. The more pleasurable we make the journey of studying law the better we are able to retain the interest and desire of why we all began our Law degrees in the first place. Early on I decided I wanted to finish the race as prepared and enthusiastic as I had first began and proceed to the workplace ideally with a healthy and happy disposition.

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