One-time Youth Council chairwoman Franky Maslin has been admitted to the Bar.
The former St Peter’s College pupil was admitted to the Bar in the Invercargill District Court last week before Justice Cameron Mander.
Miss Maslin was recommended by her uncle Tokorangi Kapea, a commercial lawyer and director of Tuia Group Ltd.
The achievement comes after many years of study at the University of Otago.
She graduated with a conjoint bachelor of laws and bachelor of arts in August last year.
“Unconventionally, I took five and a-half years to complete my conjoint degrees, with a jaunt overseas late-2011 to early-2012,” Miss Maslin said
“This prolonged my course of studies by another semester than the usual five-year period of studying,” she said.
It had not been all smooth sailing and she had spent many hours working towards gaining her degrees, she said.
“The hours of study are countless, when I look back, and I wonder how I did it all sometimes, when I also played competitive and social sports, worked and maintained a social life,” she said.
Although she enjoyed graduating from university last year, admission to the Bar meant much more to her, she said.
“Being admitted to the Bar was an opportunity to both have some finality to legal studies but also to share my joy and gratitude with my whanau,” she said.
In 2010 she became the first girl to chair the Gore Youth Council.
While at school she was also involved in other activities, both locally and nationally.
These included being appointed a Unicef Youth Ambassador in 2010 alongside three others. She could take many skills she had learned from these experiences and apply them to the “many cogs” of the legal system.
“The ability to interact, converse and be understanding are essential to any role within the law.”
There was more to the law than just knowing rights and obligations, she said.
“The legal system is made up of many cogs, but most importantly the law exists for people, no matter which way you look at it.”
In February she started working at the Wellington District Court as a law clerk and has been appointed to Judge Jane Kelly.
For now, she wanted to focus on doing her job well.
In the long term, she wanted to become a lawyer representing children, she said.