The Summer Student Support Initiative for experiential learning exceeded expectations

Posted on Thursday, October 8, 2020

Supreme Court of Canada

The Common Law Section launched in April 2020 the Summer Student Support Initiative (SSSI). The SSSI is one of the ways that the Faculty responded to the significant negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the availability of the usual summer experiential learning and employment activities for our students, with many jobs and other opportunities cancelled or postponed. 

Funds totaling $305,900 were contributed to the SSSI from the Graduate Scholarship in Environmental Law and Global Sustainability, Hyman Soloway Chair in Business and Trade Law, the Jay Hennick Fund, the Kololian Scholarship, the Nicole LaViolette Fund, the Shirley Greenberg Fund, and the Law Foundation of Ontario, as well as many firms and other legal organizations.

“The SSSI Program allowed us to benefit from a very talented student who was eager to learn and help us despite the constraints imposed by the pandemic. As immigration lawyers, our area of law was turned upside down once Canada imposed travel restrictions on entry. The student learned the law alongside us as it changed rapidly over the summer. The student was a real “asset” in one word. We really liked her. She helped reduce the “stress” that the pandemic brought to our field.” – Betsy Kane, Capelle Kane Immigration Lawyers

The initial objective was to offer at least 50 summer fellowships and research assistant positions for our students. Over 90 opportunities were created and offered by approximately 50 employers and host institutions. Applications were submitted by 274 students.

“ I want to take this opportunity to thank the members of the Committee for all of the time, thought and energy they put into the work that we did and to also thank all of the Faculty members who assisted us in the complex time intensive work of triaging applications and providing shortlists for employers and host institutions.” – Professor Penelope Simons

The SSSI Committee was composed of Penelope Simons (Chair), Louise Bélanger-Hardy, Suzanne Bouclin, Cintia Quiroga, Karine Laframboise, Danielle Lussier-Meek, Joanne St. Lewis, Tony VanDuzer, and David Wiseman.

To read the initial story: Common Law Section launches Summer Student Support Initiative for experiential learning


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