(Legal Professional, Public and Regulatory team)
Why did you choose to study law?
In 5th Year at secondary school we were given the opportunity to undertake work experience. I went to a local newspaper for a week, as I was considering studying journalism, and also a local solicitor's firm for a week. I really enjoyed my week of work experience with the solicitor.
I also thought that studying law would open doors for me in a lot of different areas of work.
How did you end up in Fieldfisher?
I graduated from QUB with a 2:1 in Law in 2019 and started a role as a Paralegal at another firm in January 2020. I built up my experience at that firm for almost a year and a half before joining Fieldfisher in April 2021.
What does your current role involve?
I am a member of Fieldfisher's Public and Regulatory team. I am part of a team who act for a regulator investigating complaints in relation to professionals.
Day to day I am involved in analysis of documentation and evidence, taking witness statements, drafting allegations and briefing counsel in relation to the presentation of cases at hearing. I also prepare advices on the exercise of statutory functions, interpretation and fair procedures.
What interesting changes have happened, or are happening in your field?
Previously, the majority of our hearings would have taken place in person. Since the pandemic began, the majority of hearings have taken place via phone call or video call. We have worked to resolve the complexities that may arise from parties attending hearings remotely and have actually seen some benefits to hearings taking place remotely.
We ourselves have also adapted to working from home and the changes that has brought.
Advice and tips for current students?
I would suggest using tutorials etc. as an opportunity to make new friends within your course. It is great to have people within your course that you can discuss topics with, bounce ideas off and to be able to help each other with anything you are struggling with.
I would also advise working hard for each year of the course. Although final year counts for the largest percentage of your grade, it is an asset to be able to show that you did well in the modules for each year.
I would definitely recommend getting involved in some of the many extracurricular opportunities that QUB has to offer.
What’s important during selection/recruitment, or to demonstrate at a job interview?
It is easy to list skills on your CV, however it is very important that you are able to demonstrate these skills. For example, if you are listing that you have strong communication skills, make sure that you are able to back this up with an example of a situation or experience where you strengthened this skill.
It is also important to get your personality across to an interviewer. An interviewer will not only be interested in academics and achievements, but they also want to establish whether you will be a good fit for their team. It is important to demonstrate that you have an interest in the area of work and a willingness to learn.
Do extracurriculars matter? (in bolstering a student’s CV);
Yes, particularly for an individual who is newly graduated and may not have much legal experience yet.
QUB have a lot of extracurricular activities that look great on a CV. I was a member of QUB's Alternative Dispute Resolution Society and from this I was able to demonstrate skills in problem solving, communication and negotiation etc. on my CV.
Extracurriculars that aren't directly related to law matter too. For example, many firms, including Fieldfisher, place a lot of importance on fundraising for charities. If you have experience with this, you will be able to show a potential employer that your values align with theirs.
What did you love about studying at QUB?
My favourite memory from studying at QUB was the London Workplace Study Tour. In this, we were given the opportunity to visit prestigious law firms in London. This was a very insightful experience where the firms hosted various interactive challenges, case studies and other activities such as negotiation workshops.
Overall, I loved studying at QUB and feel very lucky to have spent 3 years studying there.