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Sarah Bartholomeusz is a commercial lawyer who advises clients on their corporate governance obligations and already has extensive board experience.

So the recent graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors’ Company Directors Course (CDC) was keen to see what the program, which had a reputation which preceded itself, had to offer.

Ms Bartholomeusz completed the CDC over a five-day period in an intensive residential setting at Byron Bay.

“As a legal professional I was curious about whether doing the course would add to my knowledge and skills,’’ she said.

“After being told that the CDC is a game-changing course, I knew it was important to be able to enhance my skills, but I was not sure how valuable it would be.

“What it did was consolidate what I already knew as well as enhance my learning in areas I was less confident about, and provide very practical ideas for me to implement in the boardroom.’’

Ms Bartholomeusz, as well as being founder of corporate and commercial law firm You Legal, is the chair of the Catalyst Foundation which advocates for older, vulnerable people and people with a disability.

She has also served on the SA Government’s Education Standards Board since 2016 and is on the board of the SA chapter of the Entrepreneur’s Organisation.

Ms Bartholomeusz said that the diversity of presenters and participants was a highlight of the CDC.

“The presenters were so knowledgeable and also very engaging,” she said.

“We had five different presenters, a different person each day, and they all had such different perspectives and approaches, which made the time we spent with them go very quickly.

“The other participants were extremely varied in their experience. There were two medical specialists, a diplomat, two AFL executives and senior managers from different ASX-listed companies; a retail listed company and a mining company as well.

“There were a number of takeaways that I have implemented at board level, which came from sharing experiences with people with different perspectives to my own, which was incredibly valuable.

“Also, after the course many of our ‘class’ have stayed in touch, despite coming from different states in Australia.

“One of the outcomes of the course that I did not expect, was the bond created between the participants, and also the community that the AICD is for graduates of the CDC.’’

For the current financial year all CDCs are fully booked. Places are available from July onwards.

More details on the course can be found at the AICD website or by calling the Adelaide office on (08) 8236 2800.

This article first appeared in The Advertiser.