By Shania Bhageerutty, Putney High School, Alumnus of The Young Lawyer Programme 2016
It would be easy to say that electing to become a lawyer is an unequivocal decision. Yet, most of us reaching the end of year 12 and beginning to start our UCAS applications know that unfortunately this is not the case. I feel that someone has to explicitly state that there is no issue with this; deciding what your future career will be should be something you consider thoroughly. Whether you are the person that has wanted to be a lawyer since they were 4 years old or decided at sixth form level, your passion and fervour for the subject will be the same as every other hopeful. Timing does not discriminate or consign ambition, ambition is hindered through demarcation.
For my part, what motivates me to become a lawyer is the freedom to work in any sector that I want. I can choose the area that interests me and slowly become more specialised. I have the assurance that I can be an expert in that small field and feed my own interests as well as supporting myself. There isn’t just one set type of career for a barrister or a solicitor. Whether you want to work in a City firm, a charitable organisation or in-house, all options are available to you. At first I felt daunted about deciding where I fit in the system but now I understand that the more I learn about the Law, the more arrant it will become.
Not only am I excited by the breadth of the Law but by the salient transferable skills I will master. Communication and clear comprehension are essential, as well as professionalism and attention to detail. These attributes will help you throughout your whole life. Helping yourself is not the only benefit, helping others is also appealing. The law serves to protect the population and confront social ills; implementing them as a lawyer is the way it succeeds and continues to perform its purpose with efficacy.
My advice to anyone thinking about becoming a lawyer, as someone who has made the decision, is definitely to learn more about it. Don’t fall into the trap of seeing only the alluring, shiny exterior of being a lawyer because it is clear to me that it is far from glamorous, or easy. It is likely that what most people know about it is purely cosmetic. However, what is infinitely clear to me is that it is rewarding, challenging and stimulating. This makes it perfect for me, personally. Now you have to decide if it’s perfect for you too.