Aboriginal law degree

University of Victoria Professor Dr. John Borrows provided an overview of a proposed Aboriginal law degree program to the Benchers at their December 14 meeting. The proposed joint LLB/Aboriginal law degree would include an extra year devoted to community-based study looking at how Aboriginal history and cultural traditions influence Aboriginal law. In his presentation Borrows noted that Western traditions are also deeply embedded in the common law.

The program would also aim to build a “culture of law” from within Aboriginal communities, and reframe negative perceptions of common law based on historical experience. The proposed program would accommodate groups of six students per session.

Judge Alfred Scow (Provincial Court, retired) became the first Aboriginal person to graduate from the UBC Faculty of Law in 1960. Aboriginal people currently comprise between 10 to 18 per cent of University of Victoria’s law students.