The Weekly LSA: Profile of a President
By Madeleine Matkowsky
Director of Publications
This week I sat down with Alec Deasey, President of the LSA. Alec is a penultimate year, graduate entry student with a previous arts degree majoring in Literature from Monash University. Alec has been in the LSA since he first signed up as a first year representative. He then progressed to Director of Publications, and finally became President. Besides from being a bookworm, Alec is very approachable and can be found more often than not in the common room studying or chatting with friends.
What does the role of President of the LSA looks like in a day?
So my job is to make sure all of the other portfolios have what they need so a lot of it is talking with third parties on behalf of the portfolios. I also liaise with the law school on behalf of the association. I send a lot of emails. Some of these include emailing external organisations when we are running an event or are getting funding. Its a very organisational role but basically i’m here to make sure everything is running smoothly.
What do you hope to achieve in your term as President?
I think there is a real perception that the law students association is an organisation that is quite insular and cliquey. I think what we are trying to achieve right now is to be available for anyone and trying to get the association out there as much as possible. Another thing is that I’m currently working to make more happen in the careers space because we are all interested in getting a job when we graduate. I’m also trying to provide more options for careers are liaising with the law school so there is more activity happening on that front.
What do you think the most exciting thing happening in the LSA is right now? Why?
We’ve also got a lot of exciting things happening this year. We’ve got mock interviews with firms for students who are applying for clerkships and have more than we’ve ever had. We also have more firms participating in our careers cocktail night and firm presentations than ever before. If you’re interested in that commercial careers path we have some opportunities for you. If you’re interested in non-commercial careers we have more firms attending our careers connect event happening this week. So if you’re a first year student or a later year student we have something happening for you I’m sure.
When did you first join the LSA?
So I started in my first year which is two years ago now. I came to La Trobe having finished my previous degree not really engaging in it and feeling like I was inconsequential. I became a first year representative and then became the director of publications and going into my third year I’ve been elected as president. So I’ve now been part of the LSA for three years which is also all the time I’ve spent at La Trobe so far.
Where do you find motivation to continue with your studies and your role as President?
I think for my studies I have a different perspective coming in as a graduate student. I was pretty unmotivated in my arts degree and came out of it with limited career prospects. I went into this degree really knowing I would commit because I wanted a career to be honest. I wasn’t sure law was for me but when I started I found that I was good at it and really enjoyed it. It is a motivation in itself so I can get a good job basically.
The motivation for my role as president is because I really want to provide students with the same experience that I’ve had at La Trobe. I love this University and have had a great time here and I really feel that I want as many students to be as engaged as I have been. The more great graduates that La Trobe can put out then the better La Trobe’s standing is increased in everyone’s eyes. I think that is a really positive thing.
Why did you decide to take on the role of President? What inspired you?
I feel that as president you really have the opportunity to put your own vision on the committee for the year. I had ideas on how I wanted the committee to go forward being more engaged and equipping students with career options than it has in the past. I was undecided until the last moment before I applied but it ultimately came down to the fact that I would have regretted it if i didn’t apply and I knew I had something to offer as President for the year. It’s a big step up from First Year Representative or director but if you’ve got the drive and a vision of how you want the committee to be it’s something you should consider doing as a director or officer.
How do you wind down?
I play a lot of sport and so when I’m not sitting down to do readings or send a bunch of emails I like to get active. I’m a competitive person and I’m currently a state representative in mens netball. I think if I didn’t have this physical team outlet I would go stir crazy.
As President your experiences are quite public, can you tell us something we don’t know about you?
My last degree was an arts degree but when I finished year 12 I was accepted into Melbourne University to study music. I was accepted to play recorder and was seriously considering doing it. It could have been a very different study and career path if I’d chosen to pursue it.
The Weekly LSA is proudly sponsored by Leo Cussen Centre for Law