Department: Department of Politics, History and the Brunel Law School
College: College of Business, Arts and Social Sciences
I am an Aspiring Barrister. I chose Brunel because of its amazing reputation for professional placements. The chance to study with lecturers who are also leading academics in their respective fields was particularly exciting for me. What really sealed the deal was the idea of a campus based university in London. This increases social interaction and opportunities for students to participate in activities outside of their studies.
I have thoroughly enjoyed my modules so far. Most of my learning takes place preparing for my seminars. This is where answers to questions are prepared in advance before attending the seminar. I can then share my ideas, listen to others and seek clarification on difficult areas.
Beyond the classroom, I participate heavily in Mooting; an oral presentation of a legal issue or problem against an opposing counsel and before a judge. It is perhaps the closest experience that a student can have whilst at university to appearing in court, even more so at Brunel as the finals for the 2012/2013 competition were held at the UK Supreme Court. Mini pupillages were awarded and I was one of the lucky recipients. I completed my mini pupillage with the head of chambers at 2 Dr Johnson’s Buildings. I attended criminal and family law proceedings in different courts in and around London.
Saying YES to practical experience in the legal industry was a no-brainer for me. Until you have actually seen how anything works in practice, you can never fully understand it. The most astonishing aspect of a placement is coming to the realisation that legal practice is very different from legal studies. My placement compelled me to think beyond my textbooks and I have come to the realisation that commercial awareness is not a myth! It is in fact very vital in decision making within any establishment. This specialist knowledge in a particular area is what separates you from other candidates. It is not just an extra year at university; it is arguably the most pivotal year. Whether or not you finish placement with a strengthened or faded interest in your subject area, the contacts and relationships you have built during that year will be invaluable when progressing to the next stage in your career.