Reconnecting with Mongolia has shaped Mark’s career
When Mark embarked on his journey to the New Colombo Plan (NCP), he saw it as an opportunity to reconnect with a country he loved.
Even before Mark embarked on his NCP fellowship in 2015, he knew he wanted to pursue his passion for government and law.
“I studied law, political science and international relations at the Australian National University. I had a keen interest in law, government, and the social sciences, so these fields were a natural choice for me.
Mark viewed the NCP as an opportunity to return to a country he already had a strong relationship with, having lived in Mongolia for two years prior to undertaking his fellowship.
“I had worked as a research associate at the National Legal Institute of Mongolia. It was an extraordinary experience and I became fascinated with Ulaanbaatar, the countryside, culture, language and history of Mongolia, and its legal development as a post-socialist Central Asian state.
“The NCP offered an unprecedented opportunity to immerse myself back into Mongolian life, so I jumped at the chance.”
While there, Mark completed legal internships, courses and his thesis, each pursuing areas of law and government that he was passionate about.
“I completed legal internships at the General Council of the Judiciary of Mongolia, a body responsible for overseeing the Mongolian judicial system, and at MAX Group, a Mongolian conglomerate operating in multiple sectors. I also took courses and my thesis on Mongolian women judges.
Mark’s experience in Mongolia was full of highlights.
“I really enjoyed the opportunity to immerse myself in a different culture, language and landscape. I have many fond memories of trips to the countryside, especially Lake Khövsgöl.”
The NCP confirmed to Mark that he wanted to pursue a legal career.
“It was a brilliant experience to meet very talented lawyers and researchers working in a difficult environment. I was inspired by their work and dedication to legal development in Mongolia.
Mark’s time with the NCP in Mongolia was a transformative experience.
“The ASC program has influenced me in countless ways. My experiences through internships and studies assured me that a career in law was for me. My time there shaped the way I approach many of life’s challenges.
Mark then worked in the legal field.
“I am now a practicing solicitor, currently working as a partner in Hunt & Hunt’s Melbourne office, where I work in the Commercial Litigation and Bankruptcy/Insolvency team.”
For researchers who may be just beginning their NCP journey, Mark says preparation is key.
“Learning as much as possible about your destination country makes your immersion once there so much easier. Having local contacts really helped me. Do your best to make local friends and business contacts. Long after your program ends, it’s those connections that really matter. »