Go to uni and create your own dreams
I am the Solicitor Director of Terri Janke and Company, a law firm I started in 2000. I was born in Cairns and have family connections to Cairns, the Torres Strait Islands and Cape York (Meriam & Wuthathi).
When I was a kid I didn’t know any lawyers or anyone who had gone to university. Following my sister Toni to law school in Sydney after finishing high school, I had no idea what I wanted as a long-term career. Living in Sydney was fun, but the rent was high and I worked at nights – and this all took me away from studying.
Studying was hard. I didn’t know many people. There was so much work and I was ashamed to ask for help. I left university in the middle of my third year, I hadn’t finished either of my degrees and I wasn’t sure if I’d ever go back. It wasn’t until I had a break from studying that I gained the confidence to return. I organised tutors, studied hard and finished my degree.
Now enrolled as a PhD student, I travel around the world talking (and writing) about Indigenous cultural and intellectual property.
I have benefited so much from my university education, I wouldn’t have imagined as a ten year old Murri kid that I would one day own my own law firm. For anyone who wants to have choice about their careers and create their own dreams, I recommend university study.