Three weeks into my GDL and I was starting to feel the mounting pressure of making choices as to which direction my career would go, starting with the big question; Solicitor or Barrister? Proving currently unanswerable, the alternative “Careers with a Law Degree Event” would, I hoped, provide me some further insight into what I could do with my law qualification.
The panel of speakers, six in total, included a Barrister from South Square, a Corporate Secretariat, a member of the legal counsel for RBS Markets and International Banking, and a playwright. What I was most interested in discerning was how each of the panel got to where they are; what various routes had they all taken? The residual theme was that they had all been adaptable, and had in many cases come into positions by chance. The importance of making and using contacts wherever possible was stressed.
To begin, Daniel von Lucius talked about his position in RBS and the commercial side of Law. As City GDL alumni, I was very interested to hear his story. For a job like his, you need to be able to constantly review a dynamic and changing market; an academic view of the Law is not suited to this work. Specifically, his work involved derivatives - products that derive value from something else. He loved the fact that his job was very international and diverse, allowing him to work with an interesting range of people. The fast pace of his work - he provides “market leading services in debt financing, risk management and transaction services” - sounded exciting. It was definitely a job more suited to those who have some affinity for numbers, and for people unafraid to face new challenges on an almost daily basis.
Hot ticket of the month is for the Legal Cheek Q & A in association with Gray's Inn, and not only because the City Law School's Andrew Worthley is participating in the panel discussion!
Andrew Worthley is a Senior Lecturer on the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) at the City Law School and an employment law barrister at Magdalen Chambers. He is to join on the panel Desmond Browne QC (media law barrister and head of chambers at 5RB); Louise Lamb (financial services litigation partner at Hogan Lovells); Jasmine Murphy (personal injury and professional negligence barrister at Hardwicke) and Sally Davies (construction and engineering litigation partner at Mayer Brown).
Other distinguished panellists include Frances Edwards (president of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives); and Andrew Roycroft (senior associate in the tax team of Norton Rose Fulbright).
Andrew Worthley said:
"This should be a fascinating evening. In such a competitive legal world it's precisely the sort of event that I would encourage students and prospective lawyers to attend. I am sure that there will be plenty to learn from some sage and practically robust advice, sprinkled with nostalgic reflections about the ever-shifting legal landscape. I am looking forward to listening to the variety of ideas and suggestions put forward by panel members, students and practitioners."
Alex Aldridge, Managing Editor of Legal Cheek, who will also be chairing the Question Time style panel discussion, said:
"At a time of change in the legal market, we thought it would be interesting to put together a group of senior litigators from different branches of the profession to share their experiences with law students. Would they have done things differently if they were beginning their careers today? And what other pieces of hard-learned advice do these lawyers have to share with the wannabes of 2014? We'll find out next Tuesday."
The event is sold out but follow Twitter for the evening's advice. Andrew recently penned a piece for Legal Cheek 'I wish I had known how to be a good boss'.
Senior Lecturer in EU Law at The City Law School, Dr Elaine Fahey, has co-edited a new book (with Deirdre Curtin) bringing together legal perspectives on the relationship between EU and US legal orders.
A Transatlantic Community of Law: Legal Perspectives on the Relationship Between the EU and US Legal Orders was published by Cambridge University Press in July 2014 and features judicial, political, legal, socio-legal and international relations theorists.
Dr. Fahey joined City Law School in 2014 and was previously a Senior Postdoctoral Researcher at Amsterdam Centre for European Law & Governance at the University of Amsterdam, a Max Weber fellow, European University Institute, Florence, Italy and an Assistant Lecturer and Lecturer at Dublin Institute of Technology and Trinity College Dublin.
Find out more about the book and Elaine via the City Law School News.
The Fair allows you explore potential volunteering opportunities among a number of organisations. The Fair is an effective way for you, as a young lawyer entering the legal profession to ensure you are fully aware of the good work done by local community organisations as well as an excellent chance to discover potential volunteering opportunities.
Entry is free, no sign up required
When: Thursday 6th November, 2 – 4pm
Where: Student Common Room, Atkin Building, 4 Gray's Inn Place, London WC1R 5DX
Advocates for International Development (A4ID)
Bar Pro Bono Unit
Camden Citizens Advice Bureau
City University Student Union Service
City University Careers, Student Development and Outreach
Democratic Progress Institute
Free Representation Unit (FRU)
Island Advice Centre (Tower Hamlets)
Migrants Resource Centre
National Centre for Domestic Violence (NCDV)
Peer Arena Mediation Scheme (PAMS)
Prisoners Advice Service
South West Law Centre
Southwark Law Centre
Victim Support Westminster & more
Come along and develop your note taking skills for the LLB large group sessions in this optional workshop, run by Sally Thorpe from Academic Learning Support.
No need to book - LLB students are welcome to just attend on the day!
Wednesday 15th October 2014 - 12pm-1pm in C307
The City Law School Alumni Careers Clinic
Thursday, 16 Oct 2014, 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM | CityCareers, Drysdale Building, Level 1, City University London Northampton Square EC1V 0HB
This Careers Clinic is an opportunity to receive one-to-one CV or application advice and feedback from The City Law School alumni who are now practising solicitors in a commercial setting.
Katherine Niccol - Solicitor, Group Litigation and Commercial Services, Slater & Gordon (BVC/BPTC alumna)
Katherine cross-qualified from the Bar in July 2013 into a mid-sized Central London firm. During qualification there Katherine gained experience in Commercial Services, Litigation and Dispute Resolution, and Personal Injury. Between completing her Barristers training and later becoming a Solicitor, Katherine spent several years working in various Government Departments and offices including the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the UK Film Council. This experience has given Katherine a depth of understanding in relation to the needs of a variety of industries and the application of Government policy to them.
Katherine completed her law degree at the University of the West of England before achieving an LLM in Commercial Law at the University of Bristol. Here, Katherine specialised in credit, security and insolvency before going on to train as a Barrister at the Inns of Court School of Law.
Roy Appiah - Trainee Solicitor at Clifford Chance (LLB alumnus)
Roy studied LLB Law at City and completed a summer placement at Clifford Chance before securing a training contract with the firm.
Freddie Ventura - Trainee Solicitor at Stepien Lake LLP (GDL and LPC alumnus)
Assisting on the sale and purchase of Commercial and Residential Property, drafting Leases/ Deeds of Variation/Assignment and carrying out Reports on Title.
Freddie completed GDL and LPC programmes at The City Law School.
Jemima Faircloth - Solicitor, Disputes Resolution Team, Seddons (BVC/BPTC alumna)
Jemima is a member of the Disputes Resolution Team. She was called to the Bar in 2010 before qualifying as a solicitor in 2012. Jemima advises on disputes and conducting litigation in the High Court and County Court. Her work covers a full range of litigation matters and includes claims in negligence, breach of contract, and commercial and property disputes.
Prior to completing her BPTC at The City Law School, Jemima studied law at King's College London.
Liana Uzoziri - In-house lawyer at World Duty Free Group (LLB alumna)
Prior to joining World Duty Free Group, Liana worked as Corporate Associate at Fasken Martineau DuMoulin. She studied LLB Law at City.
Wayne Codogan - Trainee Solicitor at Marriott Harrison (LPC alumnus)
Wayne is a first year trainee, having joined Marriott Harrison LLP in March 2014. He graduated from Queen Mary, University of London in 2010 with a degree in Law before going on to obtain the highest overall Distinction in his year group on the Legal Practice Course at The City Law School. Prior to joining Marriott Harrison LLP, Wayne completed a 12-month legal internship at Warner Bros. Entertainment UK Limited and worked as an in-house paralegal at Tesco Stores Limited.
Wayne spent his first seat gaining a broad range of experience and understanding of corporate transactions in the Corporate Department and is currently undertaking a joint seat with the Employment and Litigation teams, assisting on a variety of contentious and non-contentious matters. Wayne is due to qualify in March 2016.
Target audience: Open to all
How to book an appointment?
Send a paragraph (no more than 100 words) on why you would like to book a place at this event to email@example.com
Remember to specify your availability between 6 and 8pm on 16th October as well as your course and year of study
Specify which alumni you would like to book an appointment with (Maximum of 3 appointments per student but please feel free to list more than 3 ideally in order of preference; some alumni may be more popular than others and thus their appointments may get booked very quickly)
Use the following subject line: Law Alumni Careers Clinic – 16th Oct
Unless we receive all of this information from you, we will not be able to book you a place
Bookings are now open and will close on Tuesday, 14th October
Slots will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis to students who have demonstrated in their email that attending this event would be of benefit to them.
If you have been selected, a confirmation email will be sent to you.
Already fed up of all the reading you have to do this term?
Settle down and listen to an excellent Radio 4 series hosted by Helena Kennedy 'A Law unto Themselves', in which she spoke to eminent international lawyers and judges about their lives and careers.
Episode 1 - Justice Michael Kirby, the first Australian High Court judge to come out as gay and who argued forcefully, in the face of considerable opposition, for equal rights for homosexuals.
Episode 2 - Gareth Peirce helped free convicted Irish bombers such as the Birmingham Six and Guilford Four, secured the release of Guantanamo Bay detainees, and for years thwarted government attempts to deport the Muslim preacher Abu Qatada.
Episode 3 - Jeremy Hutchinson - his career ranged from defending Penguin Books in the Lady Chatterley's Lover obscenity trial, to taking on the might of the British intelligence service in the ABC official secrets trial. He also represented society call girl Christine Keeler and the art thief Kempton Bunton.
Episode 4 - Eva Joly, the Norwegian-born judge investigated a multi-billion euro fraud involving the state-owned Elf oil company. Thirty people were eventually convicted and senior members of former President Francois Mitterand's government implicated after she revealed that company directors had siphoned off billions of francs to pay for bribes and luxurious lifestyles.
Thanks to Strictly Legal - the Birkbeck Law Librarian's Blog, for this tip-off.
Something all law students will spend valuable time mulling over in those early days of their degree is the lack of one single legal document which 'sets out in one place the fundamental laws outlining how the state works' (see What is the UK Constitution? from UCL's Constitution Unit) aka a constitution within the UK.
In July 2014 the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee published its report 'A New Magna Carta?' along with the pros and cons of a codified written constitution. They have invited responses to this report, after working with King's College to put forward some alternative visions for the future.
Graham Allen MP puts forward the options re codification in this brief video.
The Political and Constitutional Reform Committee is running an open public competition to find who can write the best Preamble—or introductory statement—for a modern Written Constitution for the UK.
They ask for 350 words maximum, with a deadline of 1st January 2015.
Before starting my Law Degree, I wasn’t too sure on what I wanted to do when I graduated. I was undecided between finance and law. However, I went with my guts and started a law degree, which I started at City Law School in September 2011.
The first week at university was daunting coming straight out of college, but I decided I need to live up to the commitment. Studying law isn’t just about the studying if you want success; it's about acting the role, talking the talk, proving to yourself that you have what it takes to face the world, alone!
‘Does anybody want to run as student representative’ said Margaret Carran, the head of the LLB at that time, whilst we all sat in the Oliver Thompson Lecture Theatre at City University. I answered affirmative and was invited to give a speech before approximately 200 people for votes. It was intimidating but to sooth myself I thought if I can’t do it now, I can never do it before a panel of judges at a Supreme Court, or even before prospective investors at a bank.
I finished my talk and was bombarded by questions on the procedures I would take to represent the students. Feeling as if I had applied for presidency, I answered with full force and ambition, generating majority votes and securing the position, an achievement that pushed my confidence and belief in myself a mile further.
From then, I focused mainly on a career as a Barrister, knowing I had the confidence to speak publicly and share my opinion and beliefs fearlessly. The following year I took on the responsibility of becoming a Student Ambassador. On top of this I enhanced my bar career prospects further by securing four mini pupillages, networking, becoming a legal advisor at a charity, representing for the FRU, undertaking pro-bono social welfare cases and representing clients at tribunals. I also participated in external and internal mooting competitions, whilst securing two solicitor internships – all during my three year law degree.
JUSTICE have a new post suitable for "a bright, committed individual" to help build the JUSTICE Student Human Rights Network (JSHRN) - a JUSTICE Student Network Fellow. This new post will focus on supporting the online presence of the JSHRN, and enhancing their profile and working with students interested in public law and human rights across the UK. While not a legal post, the Fellow will work closely with legal staff to find ways to involve students in their work, and reflect JUSTICE’s policy work on the website.
Full details available (including application information) via their website, deadline is 12pm on Thursday 9th October 2014.