During my Professional Training placement, when I witnessed my analysis being used to undermine the Prosecution’s chief witness it gave me the confidence to know that I was capable of working in this profession. I am very grateful to my placement supervisor and all I learnt from him in that year.
What attracted you to choose the University of Surrey?
The Professional Training placement integrated into the law degree really caught my attention because it gave me an opportunity to gain relevant and valuable experience before I graduated.
Additionally, at the time I was on the England Women’s talent pathway for Rugby 7s and the coach informed me that I needed to train with one of the senior women’s teams. Coincidentally, Harlequins Women trained at Surrey Sports Park which made it very convenient: it was the cherry on the cake!
What is your strongest memory of your time at Surrey?
It would have to be delivering the student address at the FASS graduation ceremony in July 2022 and speaking with the Vice President of the University after the ceremony. It was a heart-warming feeling to see and hear how my words encouraged my peers to keep their heads up for the future that lay ahead of them. It crowned off all the wonderful memories I had whilst at Surrey.
What were the best things about your course?
The teaching staff made the subject engaging and interesting; in particular, the International Humanitarian Law module taught by Dr Joshua Andresen. The class size was smaller than the classes we had in first year and he made the class fun and interactive; I found that pushed me to study better. This probably reflects why the highest mark I obtained in my degree came from that module!
What do you do now and what do you find most enjoyable about your work?
I am currently studying the Bar Course at The City Law school by God’s grace, on a scholarship I received from The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple and I have really enjoyed my time here. One of my highlights is being able to cross examine a witness effectively, to the extent that I've begun to enjoy and gain confidence in my style of questioning, which my tutor commented on in their feedback. It made me excited to know that one day I would be in court doing this for real.
How did your time at Surrey help you choose what career to go into?
I chose the LLB course because I wanted to become a lawyer in future, but I wasn’t sure if I would take the Solicitor or Barrister route. The Professional Training placement that I took at Birds Solicitors substantially influenced my decision to become a Barrister, because it exposed me to advocacy which I enjoyed. I had the opportunity to work on a high-profile case in the Crown Court which involved reading the jury bundle and providing my analysis of the evidence to support the Defence Counsel. When I witnessed my analysis being used to undermine the Prosecution’s chief witness it gave me the confidence to know that I was capable of working in this profession. I am very grateful to my placement supervisor and all I learnt from him in that year.
What is your advice for students aspiring to work in your profession?
There are no shortcuts to being a good lawyer, which in turn means you shouldn’t take shortcuts now as a law student.
It’s important to get into good habits, such as reading cases, analysing judgments and applying the law, because that’s what you’ll be doing in the profession. Take the modules you are studying seriously, because what you are being taught acts as stepping stones which [if you choose the Bar route] you will later build on in your Bar studies and as a Barrister. Therefore, if you can grasp these key foundational skills as an undergraduate student it will help you greatly in the future.