Episode 47: Judicial Internships: Lessons from the Heart of the Justice System

Access to Justice, Student Section – Feb 2022

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Episode 47: Judicial Internships: Lessons from the Heart of the Justice System
Broadcast Date: February 24, 2022


Internships are an essential step in a student’s career development. They allow students to get a taste of what it’s like to work in the heart of the justice system and to gain experience that will give them a boost in their future career. In this episode, Nathan Afilalo welcomes three students who have participated in this program: Erin Macgillivray, Jessica Stickle and Roxana Jahani Aval. Together, they discuss how this experience helped them in terms of preparation for their future careers, self-confidence, networking and learnings. They also share their thoughts and challenges of interning in times of pandemic.

Erin Macgillivray did her internship in 2021 with the Honourable Justice Shaw and the Honourable Justice Trimble at the Court of Justice – Brampton (Ontario). Jessica Stickle did her internship in person with Justice David Nadeau of the Superior Court at the North Bay Courthouse, as well as virtually with Justice Erin Cullin of the Superior Court in Sudbury, Ontario. Roxana Jahani Aval did her internship in 2021 with Regional Senior Judge Mark Edwards at Newmarket Courthouse.

About the “Judicial Internships Across Canada” Program:
The Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice (CIAJ) is offering law students the possibility to participate in a judicial internship at the provincial, federal or administrative level. This program created in 2019 was able to continue and even progress in 2021: despite the COVID-19 pandemic, CIAJ was able to place 23 students, which is twice as much as the year before. The students were placed as follows: Ontario 5, Quebec Provincial Court 6, Quebec Superior Court 12, Alberta 1.

Who can benefit from this program? The internship is open to students registered in an undergraduate law degree (J.D., LL.B., B.C.L. LL.L., etc.) from a Canadian faculty of law who will have completed at least their first year of study by the time the internship begins. Students who will complete their degree in 2022 are eligible.

More details here


Erin Macgillivray is a second-year student at the University of Ottawa in the Faculty of Law, common law section. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Waterloo in legal studies and human resources before becoming a General Manager for three Tim Hortons. Currently, she is interested in criminal law and looking forward to summering at the Ministry of the Solicitor General.

Jessica Stickle is a 2nd-year student at Lakehead University Bora Laskin Faculty of Law. She is originally from North Bay, Ontario and completed her undergrade at Western University in London, Ontario with an honours degree in Business Management and Organizational Studies. As a second-year student she is beginning to find areas of law that she is very interested in practicing, including civil litigation and corporate law. She is also interested in criminal law. Jessica is eager to learn and hopes to open her own practice in the future for one or more of these practice areas.

Roxana Jahani Aval is a third year law student at the University of Windsor, Faculty of Law where she is pursuing her Juris Doctorate degree. As a young Iranian woman, Roxana continuously advocates for young voices to be heard in the disability rights movement. Roxana is the Past-Chair and Member-at-Large of the National Educational Association of Disabled Students, she works closely with post-secondary students to acquire accommodations, to promote accessibility on campus, and to aid students in accessing resources. Roxana received two Bachelor of Arts degrees from York University in Psychology, as well as Human Rights and Equity Studies, graduating with the highest distinction. She received the Marilyn Nearing Award for Outstanding Community Service from the York Support Network in York Region, Ontario. In addition to her volunteer work and education, Roxana is an artist, photographer, and active Iranian community member in Toronto, Ontario. She plans on pursuing a career in policy with government.

Roxana did a series of podcasts on CIAJ’s podcast channel In All Fairness called “Dignity.”


  • Nathan Afilalo, Lawyer, Legal Research, CIAJ

Nathan is a graduate of McGill’s BCL/LLB program and was CIAJ’s first articling student. Trained in both Civil and Common Law, he has been called to the Ontario Bar in 2020 and is now preparing for the Quebec Bar exam. He has clerked at the Montreal Municipal Court, as well as involved himself in Montreal-based access to justice organizations such as The Mile End Legal Clinic and the Centre for Research-Action and Race Relations. At CIAJ Nathan conducts legal research on our national discussions on key issues, pens reports and helps develop CIAJ initiatives.

Helpful links for law students

Blogs about internship experiences

In All Fairness is a Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice podcast channel welcoming representatives from the legal community and exploring how we can all contribute to improving the administration of justice in Canada. Legal professionals will benefit from informed discussions on key issues, essential knowledge and insights to strengthen their practice.

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