About this segment: Alumnus of the Month is an initiative by the University of Malaya Law Review which aims to feature a prominent member of the University of Malaya's Law Faculty towards the end of each month. The purpose of this segment is twofold. Firstly, to give due recognition to the contributions of our student leaders and secondly, so that their achievements might inspire other members of the faculty towards greater successes.
Aisyah Mohd Soberi or better known as Kak Aisyah
Aisyah Mohd Soberi or better known to the members of the faculty as Kak Aisyah, is a name commonly associated with smiles and laughter but that is not all; she is also known for her contributions to the faculty in her multiple roles as the Project Manager for the Legal Aid Clinic, Community Outreach Program (COP) and the Asean LIP. She started her journey as a law student without even wanting to read law in the first place. A classic example of how God gave something she never thought she would survive, but here she is today.
She graduated from the University of Malaya in 2010 where she continued practicing in litigation for approximately four years. In 2014, she started her Master's Degree from University Malaya and graduated recently in 2017. Additionally, Aisyah also has a Diploma in Shariah and Legal Practice from the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM).
Aisyah during her degree days in Faculty of Law, University of Malaya.
Aisyah is also known for her contribution in aiding the establishment of the Legal Aid Clinic of the Faculty of Law, University of Malaya. Her journey started in 2014 where she started as a volunteer at the legal aid by doing basic research and reading.
Due to her inclination to social justice, she was offered the job as a Project Manager in September 2014. Being a Project Manager involves supervising and aiding the following three main projects which are the Legal Aid Clinic, Community Outreach Program (COP) and the Asean LIP.
In regards to the Legal Aid Clinic, Aisyah is tasked to assist the faculty in establishing and managing the Clinic. Therefore, she has to find supervisors, prepare manuals and train students. Aisyah went to various local universities to research on suitable manuals and guidelines to suit the needs of the Faculty. To this date, Aisyah has thirty student advisors and ten supporting advisors to aid her. Her greatest achievement would be the official launch of the Legal Aid Clinic on the 2nd of October 2017 by Dato' Sri Azalina binti Othman Said, a Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department. The successful launch was a collective hardwork of the Dean of the Faculty of Law, the KBGUM Committee, the KBGUM Launch Committee, lecturers and students.
Aisyah and her fellow members of the Community Outreach Program.
Next, Aisyah is also actively involved in helping to manage the Community Outreach Program (COP) which has always been close to her heart, as she was also a COP member during her university days. She has always loved community work and being in COP had opened her eyes to a new horizon whereby it gave her insight on how is it to be behind bars, or what it feels like to be labelled as problematic individuals. Most importantly, she learnt that some people are misguided and instead of judging or marginalising them, we should get into their shoes and understand their perspectives. Aisyah is of the view that children are different from adults, and as such they need proper teaching and guidance. Thus, by going to the Boy's Kajang Prison, Tunas Bakti and Henry Gurney she could contribute back to the community and help the children. In assisting the COP, she would explain to the student volunteers on how to conduct lesson plans and instil the importance of doing pro bono works. She mentioned that life is not always about earning a handsome salary but to help facilitate access to justice and disseminating legal awareness to the people in need. According to Aisyah, “hope is the best feeling we could give in COP, where we could help people and not make their life so bad”. She hopes that the student volunteers will be able to understand that by joining COP, they could find the balance between earning and to fulfil a duty towards the society, as justice is not only for those who can afford it, but it is everybody’s right.
Aisyah and her fellow members of the Legal Aid Clinic.
Beyond COP, Aisyah is also involved in assisting the Faculty in the Asean LIP- a legal information portal. This is a project by the Faculty of Law and a company called MKMS. The purpose of this portal is to provide access to information for the development of law around ASEAN countries whereby updates on new cases and legislation are posted. Aisyah serves as the Secretary for the Asean LIP where she is involved with the establishment of the portal, by providing the initial paperwork and facilitate meetings.
Apart from her involvement in these various projects, Aisyah is also a certified mediator, and she also spends her time as a trainer and manager for the National Client Consultation Competition. Furthermore, she is also the Coach for the Moot Bahasa Melayu for two years in a row.
Aisyah as one of the speakers at the Asia Pro Bono Conference, held at Faculty of Law, University of Malaya.
Recently, Aisyah was also involved in the Asia Pro Bono Conference, which was held at the Faculty of Law, the University of Malaya which involves various countries around Asia. She was given the honour to be the speaker and moderator for the said event where she spoke among esteemed speakers and experts on pro bono.
Despite all her commendable social involvements and achievements, Aisyah noted that as a normal human being, there were times that she broke down, but she was thankful to have a strong support system. She mentioned that her mother, her husband, family and family-in-law were her biggest supporters. Aisyah believes that “When we break down, we should get up again and do not get carried away by emotions, suppressing feelings would only cause problems". As a person who takes mental health very seriously, she believes that sugarcoating the problem would not solve any problems.
Last but not least, Aisyah holds strongly to the motto “disaat orang cuba pecah belahkan masyarakat, kita patut bersama". In regards to her future plans, she is going to continue her PhD soon, and she hopes that her story could provide an insight into the life of volunteering and serving the community.