An Interview with Prof. (Dr.) Saroj Bohra (Professor & Director, Amity Law School at Amity University, Rajasthan)

Dr. Saroj Bohra, A strong education professional, convent educated with proven academic track record. Have demonstrated history of working in the education management industry, skilled in administration, legal assistance, legal research, and public speaking. Prof. Bohra has a distinguished academic career receiving two Gold medals in law during her graduation and was also awarded National Merit Scholarship (2004-05) for her academic excellence from J.N.V. University, Jodhpur. An astute professional with 15+ years of experience in research, teaching, administration and industry; responsible for development of academic programs, curricula and regulations in addition to preparing and delivering lectures in classroom discussions. Prof. Bohra has been actively involved in organising several Seminars, Conferences, Moot Court Competitions, Trial Advocacy competitions, Client counselling competitions, Youth Parliament, FDP’s, Workshops, literary and cultural fests.

1. Hello Madam, Please Tell Us Something About Yourself to Our Readers.

Hello Sonam! Presently, I am an educator and administrator in Amity University Rajasthan, Jaipur but I hail from Sun City- Jodhpur, Rajasthan. I did my schooling from St. Patricks Vidya Bhawan, a convent school at Jodhpur. I opted Arts stream in my higher secondary schooling and later did my Bachelors of Arts graduation from Kamla Nehru College, J.N.V.U., Jodhpur. I graduated in Law from Faculty of Law, Jai Narain Vyas University, Jodhpur receiving two gold medals and National merit scholarship in year 2004 and did my Masters in Law securing second merit and Ph.D. also from same university. So you could see that my entire education took place in a small town, Jodhpur. I started my professional journey after my masters in law with National Law University, Jodhpur. Later I was also associated with UPES, Dehradun, IMS Unison University, Dehardun, Karnawati University, Gujarat. It’s my second tenure with Amity Law School, Amity University Rajasthan.

2. What Inspired You to Choose Law as Your Career?

As mentioned, I was studying arts papers like English Literature, Sociology, Public Administration in my senior secondary and later obtained my Bachelors in same. At one point I realized that it does not interest me anymore to pursue Maters in Arts. My maternal brother was then selected in R.J.S and my elder sister did her graduation and masters in law. I had discussions with them to understand actually what courses are taught in law degree and then gone through their law textbooks, dissertations etc. I enrolled for law prog. and in the first year result when I was declared topper of university it was very encouraging and made me realize that I can build my career in it. The law interested me because as we know its nature is dynamic so one need to be updated regularly so it’s not monotonous. Further it also empowers me as a female, I realized education in law is a strong weapon to educate, help, assist, counsel, aid people especially women in society.

3. You Completed Your LL.B, LL.M and Ph.D. From Jai Narain Vyas University. Tell Us About Your Law School Journey.

Honestly, I was very introvert then so I used be ‘silent listener’ in my regular classes. Few of my professors were amazing, but then trend was more of self-studies so I also majorly did it. In those days we did not had mandatory internships and mooting except one course on Mooting in our final year. My teacher and Ph.D. guide who is presently Dean, Faculty of Law of University has been great inspiration for me as a teacher.

4. Did You Pursue Any Extracurricular Activities Such as Mooting, Debate, Seminar, Online courses, Publication and Sports? How Did This Contribute to Your Holistic Development? Do You Think Such Activities Are Important in Law Student’s Life?

As mentioned we had one compulsory course in mooting in final year so I got an opportunity only once to prepare memorial and give presentation before external experts. That’s only memory I have during my college life of such participation. But joining NLU, Jodhpur was turning point in my life as it exposed me to totally different teaching-learning pedagogy. Then I started participating in Seminars, Conferences, Workshops, Training sessions, Faculty internships etc. because despite the fact that I was a meritous student with strong theoretical concepts the needs of students with five years integrated courses were different so I realized the need to pace with changing need of the profession and began upgrading myself. I need to really work hard in my initial years of career and felt that it would have been great if such Extracurricular Activities were part of my curriculum during my gradation days. Talking about sports I like playing badminton. Yes, in today’s technological era you can survive only if you have holistic personality

5. What Kind of Internships Did You Do While You Were A Student? Any Remarkable Experiences During Your Internships That Shaped Your Career Choices Later?

No, not as student but undertaken faculty internship, it helped me to groom as a professional.

6. If You Could List Out 5 Activities Which on A Scale of Priority, Should Be at The Top in Any Law Student’s School-Life, What Would Those Be?

World is changing with every day. This year the pandemic has completely changed the functionality of the world, so priority changes with time so one should be prepared to learn- unlearn- relearn. However in present context according to me priorities should be 1) To be tech savy & learn coding language 2) Have Conceptual clarity 3) Application based learning 4) Daily read alteast one case law/Legal article 5) Inculcate Hobbies

7. Any Tips for Budding Legal Writers? How Can Law Students Develop Good Writing Skills?

Nowadays, Universities are including innovative teaching learning pedagogy methods in law education which are majorly research based, students must sincerely participate in it. CCP( Cut, Copy, Paste) must be discouraged. Students must daily read one legal article/case law and then should write their opinion/understanding on it.

8. When Would You Say That an Academician Is Successful?

Of course, when a student succeeds in his/her career, but most importantly when they create professionals who contributes in nation building and a student who makes change in society.

9. Do You Feel That There Are Differences Between Students Of ‘Elite’ Law Schools and Students from Other Law Colleges and Traditional Universities?

I always believed that a student is not bad, it depends how a teacher molds a student. Many legal luminaries have graduated from traditional universities or other Law colleges and excelled in their careers. Many bright students because of their economic conditions can’t join so called ‘elite’ law schools but in intelligence and capabilities they are no less than students who could make to such law schools. Yes, I agree that elite law schools lead on resources like infrastructure, exposure, opportunities etc. Alike diamonds which are found in Coal mines what it needs is skilled hand similarly a student needs a good academic ambience and correct guidance.

10. Tell Us About Your Teaching Methodology. Do You Encourage Students to Take Notes or Do You Engage Your Students in Active Class Participation?

My teaching methodology includes simply explaining concept with day today examples using lay man language followed with case discussions, application based exercises, court room exercises mooting, project writing, article writing etc. Teaching pedagogy depends on what are teaching objectives and leaning outcome of course I am teaching.

11. The Best Experience and Success Habit You Would Like to Share with Law Students to Encourage Them.

I have developed virtues like persistence, dedication, hard but smart working habit. Never give up attitude, considering that failures are temporary, each challenge or obstacles makes you stronger and you will see a better version of yourself each time you overcome it. I am avid for my profession. My mantra ‘I may be not be the best but I am hardworking & keen learner and that helps me to be different and stand out of crowd’ J Make yourself so worthy that whenever from wherever you leave it must create vacuum.

12. Lastly, What Would Be Your Message to People Who Want to Take Up A Career in Teaching?

First and foremost, to opt this profession only if it’s your primary and not secondary choice. Secondly, it’s not a profession to make money (please don’t interpret that I want to say you are here for charity) but its Nobel profession which creates nation builders. Thirdly, a teacher must understand that there is fine line between ‘being a friend’ and ‘being friendly’ with students. They must maintain the decorum of this Nobel profession. Lastly, this profession demands lots from you like you have be a regular reader, a researcher, a mentor, a good orator, an inspirer, a supporter, a motivator etc., where one have to invest  a lot emotionally and  physically. So take teaching as a profession only is you are ready to give your cent percent else there are hundreds other career options available.

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