Two LLM students earn Viscount Bennett Scholarships to support research

Rachel Weary and Ngaire Androsoff receive awards from the Law Society of Alberta

Sarah Kent - 30 July 2021

Two LLM students at the University of Alberta Faculty of Law are the 2021 recipients of Viscount Bennett Scholarships, awarded by the Law Society of Alberta. 

Rachel Weary, ‘18 JD, and Ngaire Androsoff will each receive $20,000 to support their master’s studies, commencing in fall 2021.

“I’m very humbled to have been chosen to receive a Viscount Bennett Scholarship,” said Weary. “It’s thrilling to be able to pursue this opportunity and to have my proposed research receive this  vote of confidence.”

The Law Society of Alberta annually awards up to three scholarships to support post-graduate studies. The scholarship was created by the Right Honourable Viscount Bennett, who served as president of the Canadian Bar Association from 1929 to 1930, and recognizes academic excellence. 


For her master’s research, Androsoff will undertake a timely examination of how freedom of expression applies to the control of fake news. With a particular focus on the COVID-19 pandemic, she hopes to determine whether fake news can be combated without encroaching on peoples’ freedom of expression. 

“This research is important because the news and information we consume shapes our behaviours and choices, and if we are being misled by the information we receive, then our ability to make informed, educated choices is being taken away from us,” Androsoff said. 

There must be a balance since overly restricting information doesn’t leave room for freedom of expression or competing perspectives, she said. 

She was driven to pursue her master’s by her passion for research. “I like getting to know a topic inside and out and explore new ideas.” 

Androsoff grew up in small-town Alberta and completed her law degree at Bond University in Australia before returning to her home province to complete the accreditation process. 

“I am honoured to have received such a prestigious award. It’s recognition that I’m on the right path in pursuing a topic that not only am I passionate about, but that others in this field also believe is important.”


With a keen interest in commercial law, Weary plans to focus on the legal and social issues surrounding Alberta’s Guarantees Acknowledgment Act. 

The statute attempts to protect guarantors yet has been understudied in academia, said Weary. As she argues, the Act presents problems of interpretation as it is not clear what level of protection the statute provides to guarantors.

“In studying the GAA, I hope to shed light on a little-discussed aspect of Alberta’s legal history as well as develop practical suggestions for future law reform,” said Weary.

Weary was drawn to graduate studies after serving as a research assistant while completing her JD. After graduation, she clerked with the Court of Appeal of Alberta. Becoming a lawyer has been a lifelong dream for Weary, whose first job was at her father’s law office in her hometown of St. Albert. 

“I’m grateful to everyone who’s supported me in applying to the University of Alberta and for the Viscount Bennett Scholarship, including Professors Eric Adams and Tamara Buckwold of the University of Alberta Faculty of Law and Justices Wakeling, Schutz and Crighton of the Court of Appeal of Alberta,” said Weary.