early careers – australia Eliza Brierley

Lawyer, Corporate, Brisbane

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So far into my graduate program, I have completed two six-month rotations – one in the infrastructure team and the other in the utilities team. Whilst the type of work between these practice groups predictably varied, both teams provided the supportive learning environment necessary to foster personal and professional development.

One of the highlights of my graduate program (and one that exceeded expectations) was the early exposure to client-facing work. This, in part, was comprised of attending client meetings and functions alongside my mentors, however a particularly memorable experience was flying to Sydney to facilitate a contract close for one of Australia’s leading solar power project developers in respect of two large-scale solar farms in Northern Queensland. Knowing that partners and senior lawyers trusted me to act independently in a client-facing environment, as a representative of the firm, was extremely encouraging and made me feel like I was a valued part of the team.

Another noteworthy aspect of my graduate program was the opportunity to work in emerging fields of law. For example, during my rotation in the Utilities team, I had the opportunity to work on some of the most novel renewable energy projects in Australia including the development of Australia’s largest integrated solar and battery facility. Further, after witnessing first hand the developments in government policy impacting energy law in Australia (e.g. the publication of the Finkel Review followed by the implementation of the recommendations set out therein), I was fortunate enough to be able to participate in this evolving legal landscape via assisting in the preparation of submissions to the Federal Government, on behalf of Ashurst, in respect of the National Energy Guarantee. Overall, I am grateful for these learning opportunities as they significantly aided my development as a corporate lawyer.

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