Alumni share their start-up stories

MLS students heard from alumni working in the technology and start-up space at the latest Beyond Law School panel.

MLS was proud to welcome back four recent alumni to the Beyond Law School panel on technology, start-ups and the law, held on Tuesday 5 September.

Co-hosted by MLS Career Services and the Law Students’ Society, the event was designed to give students in the JD program insight into a range of career pathways in the law.

Panellists Grace Wong, Jack Hoi, Benson Siong and Max Paterson discussed their experiences working in the technology and start-up industries.

While each of the panellists work in different businesses, they all agreed that the critical thinking, analytical and business skills developed throughout the JD have been crucial on their road to establishing start-ups.

Grace Wong, co-founder of Liven, shared her insights on how important her legal background has been in her journey from lawyer to full-time entrepreneur.

Even though her work falls outside the traditional legal sphere, Wong said that she regularly relies on the skills she developed while studying law, like the ability to read and interpret contracts and trusts.

As co-founder Onploy, an online employment marketplace for typically hard-to-fill roles, Jack Hoi leans heavily on his legal background and strategy consulting experience.

Hoi said his legal training served as a great foundation in developing the business judgment he now relies on at Onploy, one of SEEK's early-stage ventures.

As a co-founder of Upstart Advisory, an end-to-end consulting service, Benson Siong applied his legal skills both in establishing his own business and in assisting new start-ups.

Siong said that his background in employment law, coupled with HR advisory and commercial skills, has made an important contribution to his success today.

Max Paterson is the CEO and co-founder of Settify, which uses artificial intelligence to provide initial assistance for family law clients, allowing them to provide initial instructions to their lawyers prior to the first conference.

Speaking to the MLS students, Paterson said that his legal background has been crucial to understanding industry and client needs and incorporating them into Settify's operating model.

The panel formed part of the Beyond Law School series, which is aimed at showcasing the range of different career opportunities and pathways available to JD graduates.

Find out more about the Melbourne JD