ATTY. PEACHES MARTINEZ-ARANAS OF ACCESS PIONEER & DIGITAL INNOVATOR OF MCLE FOR LAWYERS NOW PROVIDES BOTH ON DEMAND MCLE and FLEXIBLE SYNCHRONOUS MCLE
It’s been over a year since the pandemic hit and organizations all over the world are still coping and learning how to function in the “new normal.” COVID-19 has changed the very way we work and commune, and companies have been forced to close or adapt to the ever-changing pressures and restrictions of this pandemic. But one visionary and digital innovator has successfully navigated these turbulent times by launching a groundbreaking e-learning platform for lawyers.
Atty. Peaches Martinez-Aranas of ACCESS successfully established the first-ever digital platform for legal practitioners who wish to comply with their Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE). “Even as early as 2017, way before the pandemic, we were devising ways to better cater to the needs of lawyers as far as MCLE is concerned. The future of learning is digital, and we foresaw the need to bring MCLE online – making it more accessible and convenient for all lawyers across and even outside the country,” shares Atty. Aranas, who is also the Managing Partner of LMA Law, a boutique law firm specializing in taxation and corporation law.
Atty. Aranas is truly a visionary and a trailblazer, having paved the way for MCLE to be delivered online and on demand. Until ACCESS, this was but just an idea.
It was Atty. Aranas who conceptualized online MCLE in 2017, and together with her team, presented and defended this before the Supreme Court (SC) en banc in November 2019. “It was really through our efforts that the delivery of MCLE online is now a reality. Before us, many talked of doing it but no one really pursued it with passion and excellence like we did. And though others have followed suit, we remain to be the country’s trusted leading online and on demand MCLE provider with courses that are designed to educate,” Atty. Aranas says proudly. “We don’t want lawyers to just comply with the mandatory requirement of the law, we want lawyers to actually learn. We want them to enjoy and draw real value from our courses.”
Having the concept approved and securing its accreditation from the SC was a meticulous and grueling process – especially as ACCESS was the first to present such a groundbreaking idea. “We meticulously curated the curriculum with Dean Ada Abad and the faculty of Adamson University’s College of Law. We partnered with esteemed legal luminaries to share their knowledge and impart their expertise through our online and on demand courses. We worked with a team of dedicated instructional designers who spent hundreds of man hours developing courses that will engage lawyers to absorb and retain knowledge. Finally, we collaborated with a young, creative agency and production house that specializes in developing learning modules to ensure top-quality courses.”
“When we think of true online learning, it should be engaging and participative – and not just watching a lecture online in video format. This is not best practice. We want our learners to be glued to our courses. Thus, we have developed courses that are fully interactive with features that enhance learning.” Some of these features include the follow-along transcribed lecture guides, interactive games and quizzes, and a virtual MCLE proctor.
Regarded as the “Netflix for lawyers,” ACCESS MCLE makes compliance easier as it offers lawyers utmost convenience. These courses are online and on demand. They can be taken anytime, anywhere, and can be watched from the comfort of your own homes and offices. Moreover, lawyers don’t waste time in traffic or lose precious billable hours.
Some of the legal luminaries who have lent their expertise and who are headlining some of the very courses on ACCESS MCLE are Retired Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio of the Supreme Court of the Philippines, Associate Justice Cathy Manahan of the Court of Tax Appeals, retired Associate Justice Magdangal De Leon of the Court of Appeals, Deputy Commissioner for National Privacy Commission Atty. Leandro Aguirre, Chief of the Legal Division of the Bureau of Immigration Atty. Arvin Santos, and retired SEC Chairwoman Atty. Teresita Herbosa, among others. It’s definitely a power-packed network. “So lawyers can now learn from the best without having to leave their homes or fly to Manila just to hear their lectures,” says Atty. Aranas.
To date, ACCESS offers a full course of 36 credit units of online and on demand MCLE. And beginning October 1, 2, 8 and 9, and every month thereafter, ACCESS will offer SYNCHRONOUS MCLE which will allow learners the flexibility to complete their compliance from October to March 2022. That’s right, this is the first hybrid synchronous MCLE that provides flexibility in schedule. The lawyers are not bound to complete their synchronous MCLE strictly within 4 days of any given month. He can schedule his synchronous classes from October to March. In that sense, it is also on demand.
“We believe that Philippine lawyers deserve online courses that are global in content, design, and delivery. For us at ACCESS, this is not just a business; this is our legacy. We are committed to elevating online MCLE and uplifting the Philippine legal industry through education that is accessible, of high quality, and which is at par with the education in first world nations.”