At a small firm wouldn't you care more about someone's credentials because you receive a lot of applicants for one or two spots and the person you hire is expected to take on a lot more duties and responsibilities right from the outset? Before you invite a candidate in for an interview (where you can then test for behaviour, personality, ego, short vs. tall, etc.), how would the foreign trained student or lawyer differentiate themselves? I'm curious to know what you look for on a resume because most new calls are not mature students with a ton of prior work experience; many, if not most, foreign trained candidates go abroad right out of high school or undergrad.
My next question would be the costs associated with a foreign legal education and starting your own practice as a new call - a position you seem to be advocating for here. I imagine if you're starting your own practice, you won't see the revenue coming in for a while, so if you have prior debt and are going into more debt to open your practice, what does this look for a new call? How would mentorship work? Would a new call with a lot of debt and limited options that starts their own practice with limited practice experience be able to provide good client service and responsible lawyering? Or will they be seeking out shortcuts and taking on clients and issues that they are not experienced to handle and half-assing their way through - almost like a trial and error? These are all concerns I would have as someone deciding to open my own practice and I think anyone - whether they are a Canadian or foreign trained lawyer - needs to be asking themselves before they open up their own practice.
Super naively optimistic take here, but I choose to believe that since the current vaccination timelines are based on Pfizer and Moderna only, the addition of vaccines like AZ, J&J, Novavax will cause us to be way ahead of schedule and we will have fall class in person.