[Reprinted with permission from the February 2019 edition of Communiqué by Joan Holstrom.]

The CPLED Program has been the Manitoba bar admission course for the past 15 years. It has been delivered through three provincial organizations, the Legal Education Society of Alberta, the Law Society of Saskatchewan-Bar Admission Office and the Law Society of Manitoba. While the past 15 years have successfully launched many law graduates into rewarding careers, it is a program that is due for a refresh to bring it in line with the changing nature of the profession and the practice of law. Technology, diversity, increased cultural and gender awareness and changes in the way legal services are delivered have called out for changes in how we bridge law graduates from being students to being professionals. As a result, CPLED hired a new CEO last spring and significant strides have been taken to redevelop our Bar Admission program into what we are calling CPLED 2.0.

CPLED is preparing to have CPLED 2.0 ready for all articling students in the 2020-2021 year. In anticipation of that, a pilot program offering of CPLED 2.0 will be available for articling students in the 2019-2020 year. The pilot program offered will operate from January 2020 to September 2020. It will be offered at half the tuition cost of the legacy CPLED program which will run during the 2019-2020 year from September 2019 to April 2020. The pilot program will be offered to articling students when registering for the 2019-2020 bar admission year. Please consider allowing your articling student(s) to participate in this pilot program. The pilot program will be of interest to you or your articling student if:

  • Tuition costs are a concern;
  • The student cannot start articles before August 2019 (e.g. student is travelling or clerking elsewhere; your firm cannot hire someone before August 2019 due to budget);
  • The student cannot start CPLED before September 2019 (e.g. still awaiting a Certificate of Qualification from the National Committee on Accreditation).

The CEO of CPLED, Dr. Kara Mitchelmore, will be in Winnipeg during the first week of March and would like to meet with as many employers and principals as possible. Dr. Mitchelmore would like to share with the profession what changes will be forthcoming with CPLED 2.0 and what impact that might have on articling students and their relationships within their workplaces. Larger employers will be contacted directly to set up meetings with Dr. Mitchelmore. If you are a smaller workplace that routinely takes on articling students or if you anticipate taking on an articling student in 2020 or beyond, please contact Joan Holmstrom, the Director of Manitoba CPLED, at 204-926-2017 to attend one of the presentations given by Dr. Mitchelmore on March 4th or on March 8th, 2019.

Recruitment of Practitioners to assist with CPLED 2.0

CPLED 2.0 will require practitioners to assist by providing feedback to students on their submitted work and performances within the formative phases of CPLED 2.0. It will also require practitioners to assist with evaluating students’ work and performance in the evaluative phases of CPLED 2.0. Finally, CPLED 2.0 will require practitioners to act as practice managers for students as they work through CPLED 2.0. These practice managers will act as a resource for students as they develop skills in managing themselves, their work and office systems. If you are, or may be, interested in helping CPLED 2.0 in one of these capacities and you have been called to the Bar for at least 5 years, please send an email to jholmstrom@lawsociety.mb.ca setting out:

  • Your teaching experience;
  • Presentation experience;
  • Academic writing experience;
  • Your area of expertise;
  • Your area of interest;
  • Experience as a mentor or principal.

This will be an enriching experience for lawyers who have a passion for teaching and mentoring. We hope to hear from you.