Ooi Chia Rou

Ooi Chia Rou My Experience as an Attachment Student


I  have always perceived working in a law firm to be tedious and  mundane but every little piece of that misconception faded away as I started  my internship/  mini-pupillage/ attachment  with  Alex Chang & Co. The  common perception that people are stuck in is that a   internship/  mini-pupillage/ attachment is all about punching holes, stapling and binding documents and photocopying; something better than that would be to do some research on some legal topics.  This is,  however,  not the case in this firm.

I  still  have   vivid memory of the first day of my internship.  I  was assigned to write two essays which were aimed to test my research skills.  One of the questions was really interesting and had  piqued my curiosity.   Through this seemingly simple   exercise,  I have learnt to see things from different perspectives and angles which I reckon,  is very important throughout one’s journey in the legal field.

There was a  particularly interesting  aspect of my internship, that was, the observation of trial proceedings.  Mr Alex Chang’s  brilliant questioning skills during cross examination and mind provoking arguments during trial and  submission  has motivated  me to become a litigator and make use of my knowledge and skills to defend my clients’ rights.

My master, Mr. Alex Chang is often invited to give talks at the Bar Council.   I  really  enjoyed observing   him  in  his ethics class, where he gives a talk to more than a hundred pupil in chambers   as  his emphasis on the values of being a lawyer has inspired me to be a justice seeker with  principle  and  integrity.   A live  mock  trial presentation was also conducted by him,  allowing the pupils  in chambers  to familiarise themselves with their roles as future counsels.

L-R: Miss Ooi Chia Rou, Mr Alex Chang, Puan Hendon & Miss Ooi Wei Qian
L-R: Miss Ooi Chia Rou, Mr Alex Chang, Puan Hendon & Miss Ooi Wei Qian

I also had a rare privilege   to interact with the soon-to-be lawyers after the said talk, which provided me an insight of the challenges they have encountered in pursuing a legal career.  Listening to them sharing their experience with me helped  me to  prepare  myself mentally for the adversities that I will face in the future.

Being the Advisory Editor of the Companies Winding Up Handbook, Mr Alex Chang is again, being invited to write a brief guide on the soon-to-be passed Companies Bill 2013. I  was  given the opportunity to assist him  in  that  project.

My visit to the Kuala Lumpur High Court was really a meaningful one.  I was assigned to shadow  Miss Lim Soo Zee,  a pupil in chambers  turned   legal assistant of Mr Alex Chang.    The  formalities in court and professionalism exuded left  me in awe.

The unaccustomed event during an attachment  that I got to experience personally was the creditors’  meeting conducted by the assistant of   the Official Receiver at the office of  the Director General  of Insolvency Office at  Kuala  Lumpur.

However, the most unaccustomed  event, was the meeting  over lunch with the prominent Tan Sri Soong Siew Hong who was one of the founders of the Rotary Club of Pudu  49 years ago.  He also served as the   Secretary General of the Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia (ACCIM).  It  was  really an  honour to have had a meal hosted by  him.

Tan Sri Soong-Ooi-Chia-Rou-Alex Chang Angela Cheong Weng Ann
Standing L-R: Angela Cheong Weng Ann, Alex Chang Sitting L-R Lunch with Tan Sri Soong, Ooi Chia Rou

Karaoke sessions,  farewell dinners, to have lunch occasionally together with everyone in the firm, break-fasting dinner, 3-D movie screening   are all the other social  settings that I  participated during  my month-long  attachment.  Undeniably, these social events allowed us to be a step closer to each other,  making us feel at  home despite working in a  stressful environment.

Karaoke session
Karaoke session
Office dinner group photo

Throughout my attachment, I have received  much  guidance and support  from everyone in the firm.  Special thanks to my master, Mr Alex  Chang;  his legal assistant, Miss Lim Soo Zee;   the two  pupils in chambers, Miss Maizatul  Suhaila Binti Zukifli and Miss Nor Arifa Binti A. Rahman; last but not least Ms Elaine,   Ms Chow and Ms Wong.  I would not  have enjoyed myself so much in the absence of all of  you.    My gratitude goes out to one and all.

OOI Chia Rou
University of Sheffield

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