‘Masters of our fate’. This expression of our strategic direction for 2017–2025 and our vision for the future articulates a simple but profound message –
that it lies in our own hands and our own control to determine our destiny.

Adapted from a passage in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, written in 1599, the phrase, like much of Shakespeare’s work, has since been widely interpreted outside its original context. Indeed, the strength and relevance of Shakespeare’s writing lies in the universality and
timelessness of his themes.

In this instance, Shakespeare’s words are emblematic of the College’s foundations, the values it holds, and its attitude to the future.

Established as an independent statutory entity, the College is founded on the principle of ‘judge-led’ education. We primarily value education and learning, and are dedicated to supporting a knowledgeable and highly skilled judiciary to achieve mastery in law and judicial practice.
We ensure the education that is delivered is both compatible with and supports judicial independence, a fundamental element of the rule of law.

As an organisation we need to be clear about our purpose and what we want to happen; and be prepared to ensure we are not blown off course by challenges that will inevitably confront us – to attain self-mastery.

So to the future. We do not hold a misguided belief that we are able to predict or control external events. This is a testing and competitive world and we must do what we can to ensure the College’s ongoing sustainability and accountability. With creativity and enthusiasm we
will embrace new opportunities, and continue to expand and deepen our learning partnerships with the judiciary, the wider legal profession, academia and other relevant organisations.

Samantha Burchell
Chief Executive Officer

We also contemplate the retirement of our Chair, Chief Justice Marilyn Warren AC. We will miss her Honour’s authentic and passionate advocacy for learning in the judiciary; and her fine leadership that recognises the importance of judicial education, particularly as a means for achieving excellence and change. We thank her for her ideas and her encouragement to innovate and to explore all the possibilities that education and research offer. A College of which the Victorian judiciary can be proud with the promise of a vibrant future is part of Chief Justice Warren’s rich legacy.

The approach of the College’s 15th anniversary in late 2017 is an
opportunity to take our bearings and imagine the College’s future, into which we boldly step.