Support and mentorship a winning combination for Mariah Cartsidimas

For second year JD student Mariah Cartsidimas, seeking advice and gaining insights are key components in successful legal studies.

An avid AFL fan, second-year JD student Mariah Cartsidimas graduated with a commerce degree and came into legal studies hoping to eventually practice sports law.

“My Dad worked at St Kilda Football Club when I was born so I grew up barracking for them. I’ve been obsessed ever since!” she says.

“I love sport and my family is very sports orientated, so a career in sports law is definitely something I would look at.”

“But having started the JD and doing so many different subjects and learning so many different things, I can see that there are lots of different things out there to try for yourself.”

Exploring different paths has lead Mariah to a role as one of two Law Student Society Careers Directors for 2017. The Careers Directors help students in understanding potential career opportunities by hosting events and providing other opportunities to engage with industry professionals.

She sees the careers portfolio as a chance for students to access any guidance they may need.

“With the law, there is public interest, there is government, there is private practice. You could go into corporate consulting or tax from a corporate perspective rather than a legal perspective,” she says.

“We hope that for every student, there is somewhere they can go to get the answers they are looking for.”

Mariah has also been the recipient of advice herself, having participated in MLS’s mentoring program, which pairs students up with members of the legal community and beyond.

“I found the mentoring program to be an extremely rewarding experience. My mentor and I have met up subsequently and still stay in contact,” she says.

“He knew from our conversations that an area I was interested in was sports law. He knew that sports law is not necessarily a conventional pathway so he looked at his pool of contacts and found someone who is now working for Tennis Australia.”

“My mentor introduced me to his contact and then I had the opportunity to ask questions and find out information that you can’t just find on a firm’s website,” she says.

Of course, some of the best inspiration can come from inside the classroom. For Mariah, Constitutional Law — a subject she did not expect to love — ended up being a favourite, with the teaching of Professor Adrienne Stone a key feature.

“She had personal experiences that complimented all of the cases and topics we would go over in class, which made it much easier to engage. It changed the way I studied for every other subject,” she says.

Some of the best advice Mariah has, however, doesn’t pertain to studying at all — but to a healthy sense of perspective.

“I like to run and go to the gym, go shopping, spend time with my friends and family.”

“The JD is just one component of your life and this law school is full of extremely intelligent individuals. Just keep it in perspective that study and the law are just one component of who you are,” she says.”

By Scott Colvin

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