Please tell us a bit about yourself and your background.
I have studied at the University of Leeds for the past four years, gaining an LLB and currently working towards an LLM in Criminal Law and Criminal Justice. I am a Postgraduate Course Representative and a member of the Postgraduate Law Committee.
What motivated you to apply to study your chosen course and why did you choose Leeds?
It seemed natural for me to continue studying for my LLM at the University of Leeds following my LLB as I was guaranteed high quality teaching in a comfortable environment. I have a keen interest in criminal law which has stemmed from visits to various correctional institutions, law courts and after undertaking work experience within a firm of criminal lawyers. I attended an open day and a Master’s taster session which confirmed my commitment to continue my studies at the University of Leeds. Studying for an LLM has deepened my knowledge of current issues in the criminal law and criminal justice system.
I chose Leeds because I have enjoyed living within the city which is vibrant with great social opportunities. The University is very inclusive and welcomes students from a wide range of backgrounds. Studying at the University of Leeds has enabled me to form friendships and interact with people who share my interest in criminal law from all over the world.
What do you think of your course are there any particular highlights for you?
I have been impressed by the high standard of the teaching on the LLM course. Although the work is challenging it has been interesting and I have been able to explore issues in criminal law in great detail. The staff show genuine enthusiasm for their subject areas and this readily transfers into their teaching. The School arranges for external speakers to visit and give talks on their areas of interest. I have attended numerous talks over my time at Leeds; most recently I enjoyed presentations by DPP Allison Saunders, Liberty director Shami Chakrabarti and Labour politician Sir Keir Starmer. These talks (and the following drinks receptions) have been informative and very enjoyable whilst offering great opportunities to network.
How would you describe the help and guidance provided by the staff within the school?
The staff within the Law School are a credit to the University as they are always willing to assist and clarify any queries that may arise. Committed and approachable, my personal tutor has been excellent in assisting me with application references and providing support as and when required. The careers service is proactive and frequently informs students of events intended to provide advice on future careers along with alerts regarding various job opportunities within our chosen fields of law. The counselling team within the School are helpful and can provide pastoral support to students if needed. As a Postgraduate Representative on the Student-Staff Forum I have worked collaboratively with Heads of Departments within the School of Law to provide feedback from fellow students on the management of my course. The staff are attentive and use the comments and feedback to improve the School as a whole.
How would you describe the facilities at the University?
The title ‘University of the Year 2017’ does not come as a surprise. The University is dedicated to providing high quality education to a thriving student body and the facilities are excellent. The visually impressive Liberty Building has an open and welcoming presence and includes a moot court room and common rooms for undergraduates, postgraduates and research students. The Brotherton Law Library is a valuable asset for all research needs and provides a quiet area in which to study. The Union has two bars, various food outlets, shops and a club (Fruity is a must on a Friday night after a long week of concentrating on law).
Have you been involved in extra-curricular activities such as societies, summer placements etc.?
I am a member of the Postgraduate Law Committee being responsible for organising and ensuring the smooth-running of social events. I have thoroughly enjoyed this role and the Committee have organised various events throughout the academic year including a ‘Bring-and-Share’ Welcome event, a Bonfire party, a Christmas Social, a Head of School Supper and a very successful Postgraduate Law Ball at the Queens Hotel. Another enjoyable event was a visit to the Supreme Court and the Royal Courts of Justice in London. Being responsible for approximately ninety people in such a large city was a challenge that required careful planning and organisation. The Committee received very positive feedback and the day was deemed a great success. These events have drawn a diverse group of students together in shared networking experiences that have not only been socially enjoyable but most importantly educationally rewarding.