New lawyers take oath, urged to use technology for legal field's improvement

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 13) — The country's 1,800 new lawyers took their oath before the Supreme Court's special en banc session at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City Thursday afternoon.

Associate Justice Estela Perlas-Bernabe, who will chair this year's Bar Exam, urged the new lawyers to use technology to improve the legal field.

"As the future leaders of the legal profession, assume the greater responsibility of harnessing the law to meet the new challenges brought about by this modern age," Bernabe said in her speech.

"As millennials, continue to be technologically-savvy, resourceful, and socially-minded. No one can adapt to the changes brought about by the rapid growth of technology better than you," she added.

The associate justice also reminded them to "never compromise your integrity" for money.

"Wear your integrity like a badge, firmly stamped on every legal work. Do not be lured by the artificial glimmer of power or money," Bernabe said.

"After all, your legacy in this profession will not be measured by how much wealth you have gained or any status you have achieved, but rather, by the number of lives you have touched in fighting for the cause of the oppressed in a world filled with injustice," she added.

The court recorded a 22.07-percent passing rate in the bar examination, lower than the 25.5 percent in 2017.

READ: LIST: 2018 Bar Exams passers

Sean James Borja of the Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) top the exam with a score of 89.3060 percent, followed by Marclay Natu-el and Mar Lawrence Badayos of University of San Carlos (USC) in Cebu with 87.5300 percent and 85.5420 percent, respectively.

Also in the top 10 passers were Daniel John Fordan (85.4430 percent) and Katrina Monica Gaw (85.4210 percent) from ADMU; Nadaine Tongco (85.0320 percent) and Patricia Sevilla (84.8590 percent) from the University of the Philippines; Kathrine Ting from De La Salle University-Manila (84.8570 percent); and Jebb Lynus Cane (84.8050 percent) and Alen Joel Pita (84.6930 percent) from the USC.

They were recognized during the ceremony.