(Photo of summer students and summer volunteers in our clinic offices! Left to right: Adam Cranie (Volunteer), Natalie Marshall (Volunteer), Nicola Maguire (Summer Student), Mhairi Strachan (Summer Student).)

Kate Laverty,  Clinic Director, talks about the Clinic’s work throughout summer 2022 and especially the work of our 2022 summer students.This has been an especially exciting summer as our offices are back open and we are able to meet and work in person once again.

It has been just fantastic seeing faces and interacting in person with our students again in our offices in the Graham Hills. While I missed seeing all our colleagues and students in person during our various lock downs I did not realise quite how much I’d missed our upbeat office vibe.  The corridors are echoing again to chat, laughter and the odd voice strained by the heightened stress that comes with an upcoming court or tribunal appearance.

All our summer students are working in person and there is at least one staff member here each day. Staff are still working in a hybrid way which is working very effectively. We are still getting used to some new protocols and procedures but we intend to make the most of any benefits we gained from working remotely over the past two years.

It is always exciting to have new students working with us over the summer. They have hit the ground running and have quickly thrown themselves into demanding and fast paced cases.  Fiona Rennie is working mainly on our asylum cases with Sasha Akavicis, Sophie Rook and Melissa McKillen working on whatever is assigned to them much of it being employment related. Cara Hope and Paige Alexander, our new student directors  are busy with various tasks that help us run the Clinic throughout the year (as well as juggling some casework) and the familiar faces, Mhairi Strachan and Nicola Maguire are working on new cases alongside our volunteeers. As well as cases our summer students are organising training for the next intake of volunteers, making the office look vibrant, up to date and generally lived-in, revamping our library and many other tasks that we find hard to tackle when the terms is in full swing.  Maya Bedi is working with the Scottish Women’s Rights Centre over the summer and has been receiving great feedback on her work. All in all a terrific team who all approach their work with great enthusiasm and are ever contributing ideas for an even better Clinic going into 2022/23.

We have seen increasing numbers of our students volunteering on cases over the summer. Many are juggling jobs and other commitments so their help on cases is hugely appreciated and they ensure that we can keep offering our year round services.

Although the summer weeks are marching on we have had a very productive and energising start to the summer thanks to all our staff and students and we are very much looking forward to the new semester ahead nourished by all that in person interaction which we have missed so much.

By Kate Laverty, Clinic Director

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