BDC Alumnus Max Williams

Wednesday, 29 Mar 2023

Practice reveals the perfect path

I did well in high school, leaving BDC in Year 12, 2007. So naturally, my family wanted me to go into medicine. But I'm not good with blood.

Personally? I wanted to go into marketing.

So, we reached a compromise: Instead of medicine, I would do a double degree in Communications – and Law.

But for most of that degree, I had zero intention of going into Law. It didn't interest me at all. In fact, if I'm being brutally honest, I found it rather boring.

It wasn't until the end of my degree that things changed.

I started my PLT (Practical Legal Training). And suddenly, I could connect the theory with on-the-ground practice. Most importantly, I could help clients with their real-world problems.

It felt right. I remember thinking, "I can see myself doing this."

A serendipitous directive

I got my first job in a suburban firm on the Gold Coast where I practised a bit of everything. Family Law, Criminal Law – you name it, I tried it!

But Property Law was my favourite. So, I moved to a larger firm where I could make it my focus.

It was there I had my sliding doors moment when one day, my boss said, “Max – I want you to do Wills and Estates.”

I had minimal experience in that area. But as a junior, you do what you're told.  I decided to make the most of it. I made Wills and Estates my niche. And as it turns out – I loved it. I’d found an area of law that I was genuinely passionate about.

But I had big gaps in my knowledge. And there was no one at the firm to mentor me.  I needed help. That’s when I decided to study a Master of Laws majoring in Wills and Estates with the College of Law.

I am very proud of that master's degree on my wall. It was my first step to becoming an Accredited Specialist in Wills and Estates Law with the NSW Law Society.

The student becomes the master

I've always wanted to be a teaching fellow. So about two years ago, I emailed the College of Law and asked them to think of me if any opportunities became available.

A few months later, I was offered a position as a teaching fellow in their Wills and Estates program. And I gladly accepted!

I've been lecturing as an Adjunct Lecturer at the College of Law, Australia for a while now. And I really enjoy it.

I'm not a counsellor. I can't help with emotional grief. But I can certainly help with the administrative side of a loved one’s passing. And that, at least, allows me to help someone through a very difficult time.

Congratulations Max on your successful and enjoyable career!