The Law Club elections are long over by now, but we’ll all remember this round of elections as something different from the previous years’ — contested! Two factions (or rather, one faction and a single person) campaigning vigorously against each other at the start of the semester, handing out a variety of baked goods and even installing a chocolate fountain, plastering the lift lobbies with posters. With the votes all counted and positions sorted out, Justified is hoping to start a tradition of interviewing the incumbent elected members of Law Club.
In order to make things more interesting, we decided to tag on an additional psychological test to delve deep into the murky recesses of the members’ brains. The test is simple, we hand them a post-it note and ask them to draw 1) a person 2) standing in the rain. From this, we can hopefully glean information about the artists’ personalities through their respective masterpieces. Here is a quick run-down of what the different elements of the drawing mean — but very simply, the amount of rain correlates to stress, and having an umbrella or raincoat (or absence thereof) indicates the artist’s employment of (or conspicuous lack of) coping mechanisms.
Hui Lyi (Welfare)
Q: Why did you run for Law Club, and as Welfare Director?
I feel like I sound like the Bat. I feel like… when you’re getting arrested, and you can choose to remain silent or to contact your lawyer for advice…
I think the role of a welfare director at the start was very hard to define / demarcate- because the whole of Law Club is very welfare-orientated, but with a focus on different aspects of welfare.
Q: Something we’ve noticed is that there are now straws in the lounge – are there any other lounge-related initiatives you plan on implementing?
Actually, I really do want to upgrade the lounge to make it more facilitative for bonding- bonding doesn’t just come in orientation activities like camp, or matric week, but also based on, for example, a place where people can come together and meet.
I also have some other initiatives in mind, like bean bags, a cosy corner where people can just rest, or increasing the variety of snacks in the snack corner, or even moving the microwave out and putting it there. There’re also some thoughts of bringing in like, a PS4, with Overcooked and stuff like that. Currently, the lounge has a lot of undeveloped potential.
Stage one was like cleaning up the lounge I guess, which Law Club has already mostly done. Also, shoutout – if anyone has donations/things they wish to contribute to the school like old shelves or furniture please feel free to contact me.
Q: Do people actually pay for the snacks?
I think most people do. And occasionally people don’t because they don’t have enough coins or change – because we can’t really set up a Paylah account, since if you want to have a Paylah for business you have to be registered with ACRA.
Why not register yourselves under ACRA? We suggest, as a joke. Hui Lyi is understandably worried about the possible liabilities.
Q: How about general Law School initiatives?
There’s the GUI: essentially something that was started by Gina in 2016, where Law Club acts as a more facilitative role, where students who have initiatives on the ground can approach Law Club for fundings and stuff.
Things that happened last year included the FIFA screening, or cat therapy – some ideas that people actually proposed were having a Telegram bot for queueing, or an interest group for calisthenics. It’s a very good platform where people can really just put up their ideas and things that they hope to see done in school.
I feel like something that we can improve from last year is publicity. Once the website is up, we will post on Overheard also – other than that, posters, and social media (under progress) coverage of successful GUIs that have been done, so people know what other people have been doing.
Something else that is in the works is mental wellness initiatives – previously, this was under a GUI (wellness project). This year we’re hoping to expand it because it’s a big issue, and it’s very important especially in Law School and it’s also very hard to tackle, especially with its nature as a taboo issue. I’m going to discuss with the deanery and stuff, and check from on the ground if there’s anything we can do to provide better support from within the school. With the whole cutthroat competitiveness that results in a lot of anxiety, law school is really not good for your mental health, but that culture shouldn’t stop us from wanting to change it!
And of course, there’s the ad-hoc welfare stuff like Melvados yoghurt.
Q: Do you still sew? When did you get into this hobby?
I haven’t had the time. (Hui Lyi looks a little sad here.) But I would love to. I think it first started when I was in RGS and they had Home Economics and my mom bought my sister a sewing machine.
Q: So you stole it?
We all used it. She sews her own laptop bags, and I used it to sew clothes. Actually sewing is very interesting because there’s like a creative aspect of designing, and then the technical side which is like… actually, math.
The last thing I sewed was last year’s RAG costume, for the costume change for the lead, Celeste. That was quite interesting also, I don’t know if people know this but there’s this father on Youtube that sews transformative costumes from like Snow White to Cinderella – I was watching those videos to get inspiration.
“Is this some sort of lowkey psychological test?” Hui Lyi is hesitant about the entire thing, exclaiming that she doesn’t like psychological tests since she thinks too much.
“Does it have to be a man? Like a person?” She pauses to ponder. “Maybe I’ll draw the bat from this morning.” Hui Lyi draws a cute person, head first, in thick blue marker.
Bao Long (Publicity)
Q: Why did you run for Law Club, and why as Publicity Director?
I like to get the news out, and like to play with different ways of getting the news out, and see how people react to it. Also I really just kind of want more people to comment on my posts… I like it when people click the smiley face.
Q: A lot of people view publicity work as… saikang. Is this true? What’s your job scope?
I think my job scope is primarily to pack information in a nice way, so people don’t have to read long posts. I don’t really want to confine the role of Pubs Director as just making posters, that’s why I’ll be doing up the online store and I hope that the next Pubs Director can also carry this on. It can bring a lot more funds in, as most of our funds come from merchandise, so I hope that we can double down on making merchandise sales more accessible.
Q: I don’t think a lot of people know what Law Club does – are you, as the Publicity Director, going to do anything about that?
Yeah. After this week, more people should be seeing the Instagram for Law Club coming up – the main purpose for that is to make the things we do more transparent, so you don’t just see things that are visible (e.g. lounge revamps, etc.) – we want to let people see what we’re doing behind the scenes. I’ve prepared the others to be more open to show what’s going on behind the scenes.
Because in the past, people only know what law club does as visible things… like the lounge clean-up. That’s what people remember.
Q: Is it a lot of work?
Most of the stuffs that we do is split between the 15 of us – so someone just doesn’t have to tank everything. Pubs wise, if we need to relay info or if they need infographics and stuff – and here’s something helpful that may be useful for other Pubs Directors- you should try to impose some sort of lead up time to the sub-club, maybe like 1.5 weeks advance notice. You need time! Basically. I think it’s quite… it’s not that tough a requirement to impose, and it’s helpful to both yourself and your club.
Q: How do you feel about the increase of Law School-related meme pages?
I love them – it presents a very different side of law school. Especially if you’re a freshie you know, after your tutorial you feel quite down, normally, afterwards – and then you see some page has decided to post something and it gives you a laugh. Yeah. I enjoy them as a law school student.
As in, I do like the creative law school memes and they should be left on their own. But that said, if like (sic), if we feel like any meme crosses the line, then of course we have a duty to like (sic)… notify the page and make sure they have heard the feedback.
Tell us more about the E-store!
Basically,the e-store is just to really make our merchandise look good. Instead of just putting up the plain clothes design on Overheard and whatnot, we’re planning on getting a couple of people to wear our merchandise so people can see how it looks when you wear it around school. It’s also for convenience sake – so merchandise sales are not just confined to you having to come to Law Club room / or having to dig through Overheard for the link. We’re also planning to give promos – like during Christmas, even though it’s already quite affordable. It is affordable – right? Isn’t it?
Q: How’s the progress with setting it up?
It’s up, on our side, but we haven’t published the site yet. We’re test-running the SOP for placing an order, refunding items, etc. We’re looking at releasing it 1.5 months from now. It’s not just for Law School students okay! It’s also for alumni. It’s now easier for them to buy stuff.
Q: What flavor of cheesecake would you be?
Unicorn ah. It has everything.
Q: So you have everything?
Um….mmm…..mmmm… Can I just answer with “mmm” (sic)?
Bao Long draws his person in the rain using a pencil, with dark hollow eyes – when asked why they are like that, he explains that he wishes he had bigger eyes, and it manifests themselves in that manner.
“It looks like a character from Coraline.” The Interviewer comments. “Can I pretend I was inspired by that character..?” Bao Long asks. He also comments on the size of the raindrops he draws: “The raindrops look like xiao long baos. Everytime I draw raindrops I draw them like xiao long baos.”
Q: Why did you run for Law Club, and why as Events director?
I have several reasons. One of it was I wanted to do a bit of CV building – I guess also to make some connections. Being part of something like Law Club would entail working with people I wouldn’t necessarily have to interact with.
I rarely have a reason – I just do things when I feel like doing it.
Q: So did Bao Huei actually approach you?
Yeah, he asked me and I didn’t really mind.
Q: What is the general job scope of an Internal director?
The main job scope is to organise Open Day and some other ad-hoc events like movie nights, and… yeah. I think the bulk of OD is going to be the same with some additions – I am in line with Wai Yee wanting to boost the sports culture so I’m going to have booths for the IFG captains, and bringing in students that maybe stay on campus.
Q: We know you work out quite often in BTC. What is the workout experience here like?
I’m never at the gym actually. I’ve probably only used the gym like (sic) maybe twice or thrice in my entire time here.
I am pretty passionate about sports, I try to do some sports like (sic) everyday or every other day. I cycle to school for an event just like this, and then I’ll cycle back and not have to worry about exercise for the rest of the day.
Q: Any tips for aspiring fitness junkies out there who want to get fit but don’t know how in BTC?
Start small, just do something every day, like maybe just start by like brisk walking and then progress to like jogging and before then, you’d be pretty fit.
Q: How is it being the only one in Law Club who’s not from FOCC? What kind of working dynamics are there?
I don’t really mind it, I guess. I don’t think FOCC is different from law school or anything. In terms of working relationships… I’m alright with it.
I don’t really like the idea of being in a confined room with other people, so I don’t really use the Law Club Room. Other than that I’d go back to Tembusu.
Q: What IFG events are you in? What do you feel about Wai Yee’s ideas for NUS LAW Sports?
I’ve been doing dodgeball since the start of university and track and field since Sec 1. I don’t feel particularly strongly about any ideas, but if Wai Yee wants to implement them then I’ll just tack onto it.
Julian finishes his drawing within 30 seconds, and leaves the interview room with equally astounding speed. We have to send our photographer running after him.
Later, our photographer reports that Julian had offered to pose with his bicycle in his photograph. They state that immediately after they finished photographing him, Julian hopped onto the adjacent bicycle before their astonished eyes and whizzed away before they could respond.
Q: Why the position of Academic Director?
I just want people to not study so much. Actually, what I wanted was to make studying more fun, but I don’t want people to go crazy studying – it’s a bit counter-intuitive to my role as Academic Director…The Law School study culture is very boring and tiring sometimes, so I want to make it more fun.
I wanted to do something but, it is subject to school approval. So there’s a Meeting Room in the library, where we had our FOCC interviews. I wanted to convert that into a place where we could discuss stuff and lounge about like SMU’s Labs Space. But I don’t know how practical that is. And I want to see also if we can record all lectures, so if someone is sick and can’t attend lectures, they can still catch up.
Q: The Law Careers Fair happens every year – any plans to change things up this year?
No. not really. Just being honest.
Q: Any explanation for the fact that the Fair happens after the closing date for internship applications?
After the 15th is also after CNY, so contractors are more freed up. This is more practical reason.
LCF is also not just for internships. A lot of people also attend to see where they want to go for Training Contracts and to learn more about the firms. Also, when applying for TC you may apply for somewhere you haven’t been to before, so LCF is a platform for people to learn more about the firms and stuff.
Q: How do you win Pageant, maintain a successful relationship in Law School, and also Dean’s List? How do you do it, Nicholas? Are you human?
I definitely did not win Pageant. Mr Personality is like the consolation prize for pageant – like you have no looks or anything else going for you so you have to be consoled.
I just don’t give a hoot about a lot of things.
Q: Like FOCC Sponsorships?
Eh. I care about that one (sic). I just do my own things, and live my life, and not get caught up in the drama.
Q: Do you come to school on Saturday to study?
Yes. Actually I do. I can’t deny this.
Q: We asked this last year. Since you’re the Acads Director, what’s your favourite subject in Law School so far?
That is such a boring question.
I know, just like your job scope.
I don’t even like studying that much to be honest… Pro Bono? Because I love the community. Nicholas mumbles under his breath.
Every time I go for legal clinics the times get shorter and shorter because there are no clients. They don’t let me stay if there’s no one, they just chase me away so I don’t get my full 3 hours. So yes. Pro Bono is my favourite subject.
I also like LARC because I just played Pokemon with Jaye every single lesson for the whole year, no joke.
“I am actually very good at drawing,” Nicholas proclaims, amidst our fears that he’s going to draw something obscene. He suggests drawing his Vice-Events Director, Jaye, and does so using a thick black marker. Nicholas depicts a person with Jaye’s likeness standing amidst a huge storm, lightning and black clouds and all, but tops it up with a flower at the bottom.
Q: Why did you run for this position – especially knowing that it was relatively “undefined” in terms of the job scope?
The reason why it’s undefined is because there were only 10 last year – I think the lower batch is bigger so they need more people?
Last year only 1 events director was in charge of both internal and external, but this year Julian and I are splitting events into internal and external. So Julian does Open Day and I do Law Beach Games.
Q: So you managed to define your role quite clearly?
Actually, we defined it before they sent out the whole email to the school saying it was undefined…
Q: If your position is undefined – do you have any specific plans for it? Have there been any plans bestowed upon you?
Yeah! I’ll be in charge of mainly Law Beach Games and Block B party – so LBG has been going pretty okay over the years, and it is a pretty solid event… I plan to increase the participation rate and cost efficiency.
Block B Party is now a new thing I’m taking on this year – so this year LC wants to be more involved in the planning and so it’s now the Block B carnival. We’re trying to implement more features like carnival food stores, proper games, have a bigger event in general, etc. So the school can look forward to that right after the winter break!
We note that at the time of publishing, that Block B Carnival is both over, and was an overwhelming success! Please see our coverage of it here – good job Nicole and the rest of Law Club!
Oh and also, Julian and I will be splitting on this other thing together called ad hoc events – smaller, more regular events that don’t take up so much time and resources, such as chill out nights, movie/football screenings, sourcing for events that we can get discounts for, and dress up events like Children’s Day.
Smaller and more regular events would be good in terms of giving people a common experience in law school and help open up conversations. We’re actually very open to hearing what people want to see, so if there’s a popular movie or anything you want to see at a particular point in time, we’re very open to receiving ideas and building it up from there.
Q: What do your notes say? We ask, based on the fact that Nicole has brought her laptop here and has been referring to it. As it turns out, she’s been scrolling through a bulleted list of items on her Notes App.
If I don’t write things down I can’t remember things… So I have to do this.
We enjoyed a blueberry muffin from Nicole’s lunch box before the interviews started. She brings pastries to school often, offering them up as sacrifices to our endless hunger pangs.
Q: Your mom bakes right? What’s your favourite kind of pastry?
Oh my gosh. I really don’t know.
She looks to Rachel for assistance.
I eat anything and everything… Rachel would know. I’m going to say it’s the blueberry muffin because I brought it today. Do you want me to bring more food for you on a regular basis? Because my mom always makes a lot on a regular basis.
Q: How are you still so thin?
She dodges this question entirely, and then goes on to say:
Yeah, I can bring to school to help her finish.
She bakes every single day so it’s not finishable.
Q: Do you know how to bake personally?
No. I can tell you a very irrelevant story – last time in RGS we had this sexist course called Home Econs where we had to learn how to cook. The final exam was to make anything, so I chose to bake right (sic), because it’s easy. And then in the end when my dish came out the outside was burnt and the inside was uncooked… so I just scraped off the outside and hollowed out the inside and gave it to my teacher.
She said the taste was good but the presentation… not so good. I said it was intentional.
Nicole approaches the drawing with caution and starts her first attempt by drawing what seems like a game of Neon Blasters in the rain. She asks if she can restart.
“I want to draw better than the Pubs Director”, she declares. We politely point out that he wasn’t there to do the interviews. “Doesn’t matter”, Nicole says, shading her lightning bolts with the brown permanent marker.
When we ask her to write her name at the bottom, she mumbles, “Oh s***, spelt my name wrong”.
Thank you all for reading! This is Part 2 in a series of posts interviewing the 39th Law Club MC. Justified would like to thank them for their patience and cooperation. Part 1 can be found here.