The University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) is a leading institution of higher learning located in the picturesque province of KwaZulu-Natal, and formed by the merging of the University of Natal and the University of Durban-Westville. The university has a proud and rich heritage of academic excellence, and boasts the Howard College School of Law.
The Howard College School of Law was established in 1926 and has a stellar reputation for providing its students with justice education and clinical legal training. In the 1970s, anti-apartheid academics like Professors Tony Mathews and Barend van Niekerk underwent a legal battle against the apartheid authorities in the lecture halls, at public meetings, and in the law journals. In 1973, the School of Law hosted the first Legal Aid Conference in South Africa which became the catalyst for a national clinical movement. In the same year, Professor David McQuoid-Mason founded the School of Law’s Legal Aid Clinic to provide legal services for the poor. In 1978, it was the first in the country to give academic credit for Legal Aid as a clinical law course.
The 21st century has seen the college continue its strong standing. The Street Law course involves 85 students who teach 25 lessons a year in law, human rights, and democracy to pupils in 75 high schools in the greater Durban area.