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    Hi guys. Basically I'm having a complete melt down.

    I'm a 2nd year studying Law and I feel like I have already crushed any chance of me practising at a magic circle law firm or any established law firm.

    Background-
    GCSE- 4A's (English Language, English Literature, ICT and Citizenship), 4B,(Religion, History, Double Award Science) 1C (Maths)
    A-Levels- A (History), B (English Literature) C (ICT)
    University: Non-Russle group- 2nd year studying Law LLB. First year I achieved a 2:2.

    I know that by looking at these grades you would recommend that I'm not smart enough. However, it's completely down to laziness. I have the abilities and because I know this I don't put in the effort and ironically now find myself in this situation.

    What can I do to make myself thrive in such a competitive legal environment?
    -Should I complete other A-Levels as some Law firms specify I need 3 A's at A-Level.
    -Would learning a language be idea?-- I'm aware it's not a quick fix and languages takes years to learn so it is a commitment.

    If I achieve the grades to complete an LLM what area of law is the best to go into? I'm interested in Banking Law (I know, my GCSE grade isn't ideal-- I could resit this and perhaps complete an A-Level? or am I being too ambitious?), Corporate Law, Tax Law and Commerical Law. I would love to get my Law degree and after a few years go into Investment banking having worked in that area as a Lawyer first.

    Surely if you completed a Law degree and went on to complete further LLM, perhaps obtaining 3 in a specific area, what use is this compared to someone who has got an LLB, sat the bar exams and is now practising as a Barrister. Would the person with the LLM's be more employable in certain areas of law?

    What is the actual process to become a qualified solicitor and barrister in the UK?

    What can I do over summer which would help my extra circular side of law- only work experience?

    I also don't know anyone in Law- I have no contacts. I'm the first person in my family who has completed A-Levels, never mind attended University. I just feel so alone and lost in this environment.


    Any suggestion and help is greatly appreciated!!
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    Law graduates have it really tough in the job market. So either prove yourself and be better than most of the others, or find passion in something else.

    (I guess you have a lifeline if your first year is only 10% of the degree)
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    Haha i am in a similar position whereby I am doubting my career prospects in law and have given up on the idea of practicing.

    i would say the most valuable things would be to boost your extra curricular activities and get lots of work experience. Even although grades wise you might not have the best, a lot of firms are also looking for a future employee who would work well within the firm.

    Why not also try signing up to CAB as that is an excellent thing to have on a CV.

    if you still want to add more academic achievements to your list then why not try a law summer course. Lots of UK unis offer them and you can pick an area of law that you have never studied before and are interested in, or an area you have already been taught but would like to go over the course again.

    Hope this Helps !
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    (Original post by shawn_o1)
    Law graduates have it really tough in the job market. So either prove yourself and be better than most of the others, or find passion in something else.

    (I guess you have a lifeline if your first year is only 10% of the degree)
    You're completely right. I need to suck it up and put in the work. Can't cry when I don't work the work.

    Thankfully it's only my final year that courts. That doesn't mean much considering employers see the transcripts of all your years. No point getting a 1st in your final year if you aren't consistent in your second.
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    (Original post by evalilyXOX)
    Haha i am in a similar position whereby I am doubting my career prospects in law and have given up on the idea of practicing.

    i would say the most valuable things would be to boost your extra curricular activities and get lots of work experience. Even although grades wise you might not have the best, a lot of firms are also looking for a future employee who would work well within the firm.

    Why not also try signing up to CAB as that is an excellent thing to have on a CV.

    if you still want to add more academic achievements to your list then why not try a law summer course. Lots of UK unis offer them and you can pick an area of law that you have never studied before and are interested in, or an area you have already been taught but would like to go over the course again.

    Hope this Helps !

    Thanks so much for the comment!

    Yea my first year grades aren't exactly gleaming.

    I've never heard of CAB so I'll definitely look into that.

    Yea, I'm thinking of applying to a few however they specify an average of 65%... which I don't have so I don't know whether to apply anyway and hope for the best.
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    (Original post by NicolaM)
    Thanks so much for the comment!

    Yea my first year grades aren't exactly gleaming.

    I've never heard of CAB so I'll definitely look into that.

    Yea, I'm thinking of applying to a few however they specify an average of 65%... which I don't have so I don't know whether to apply anyway and hope for the best.
    Yeah Citizens Advice Bureau is really good and they dont look at grades etc. It is a volunteering scheme so you obvs wont get paid, but it is a really valuable and worthwhile commitment.
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    (Original post by NicolaM)
    You're completely right. I need to suck it up and put in the work. Can't cry when I don't work the work.

    Thankfully it's only my final year that courts. That doesn't mean much considering employers see the transcripts of all your years. No point getting a 1st in your final year if you aren't consistent in your second.
    I don't have much advice, but I spoke to my History teacher awhile back and he had a friend who studied German at University and he believed she was hired mostly on the basis of that, the firm didn't have many German speaking solicitors. So learning a language might work to your advantage.

    There is also this website called "aspiring solicitors", there might be some helpful information on there if you have a look.

    I think you just have to prove that you can work, and you are willing to work hard. I'm sure there have been many success stories of lawyers in good firms with a similar background as you (even if it's not an MC firm). I've heard of a few myself. Good luck!
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    (Original post by NicolaM)
    Hi guys. Basically I'm having a complete melt down.

    I'm a 2nd year studying Law and I feel like I have already crushed any chance of me practising at a magic circle law firm or any established law firm.

    Background-
    GCSE- 4A's (English Language, English Literature, ICT and Citizenship), 4B,(Religion, History, Double Award Science) 1C (Maths)
    A-Levels- A (History), B (English Literature) C (ICT)
    University: Non-Russle group- 2nd year studying Law LLB. First year I achieved a 2:2.

    I know that by looking at these grades you would recommend that I'm not smart enough. However, it's completely down to laziness. I have the abilities and because I know this I don't put in the effort and ironically now find myself in this situation.

    What can I do to make myself thrive in such a competitive legal environment?
    -Should I complete other A-Levels as some Law firms specify I need 3 A's at A-Level.
    -Would learning a language be idea?-- I'm aware it's not a quick fix and languages takes years to learn so it is a commitment.

    If I achieve the grades to complete an LLM what area of law is the best to go into? I'm interested in Banking Law (I know, my GCSE grade isn't ideal-- I could resit this and perhaps complete an A-Level? or am I being too ambitious?), Corporate Law, Tax Law and Commerical Law. I would love to get my Law degree and after a few years go into Investment banking having worked in that area as a Lawyer first.

    Surely if you completed a Law degree and went on to complete further LLM, perhaps obtaining 3 in a specific area, what use is this compared to someone who has got an LLB, sat the bar exams and is now practising as a Barrister. Would the person with the LLM's be more employable in certain areas of law?

    What is the actual process to become a qualified solicitor and barrister in the UK?

    What can I do over summer which would help my extra circular side of law- only work experience?

    I also don't know anyone in Law- I have no contacts. I'm the first person in my family who has completed A-Levels, never mind attended University. I just feel so alone and lost in this environment.


    Any suggestion and help is greatly appreciated!!
    on top of improving your grades, my suggestion would be to hone your interview skills and your general communication skills, I don't know your current skill level but I just know these two skills are up there with grades as rank of importance in getting into law career.
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    You mustn't give up on the idea of practicing. If you do, im sorry but the career wasn't right for you. There are many ways to get ahead despite not having the best academics. Apply for work experience, make your applications go the extra mile by researching stuff the average applicant wouldn't have bothered to do. Show your interest in various practice areas and use organisations such as aspiring solicitors and bright network- they are there to help you and want to help you. Study hard at uni, get a 2.1 and try to get to as many open days as you can. You can list things such as conversations you had with for example head of corporate or the graduate recruitment team. Naturally, attendance at open days will help you when applying to vacation schemes, and many students wouldn't have even been on these when applying in 2nd/3rd year. There's many ways to get your foot in the door and trust me you'll u don't need too academics to get a training contract. I have spoken to enough trainee solicitors who were in similar situations as me and they managed to land tc's. Some firms like slaughter and may are about your thought process and how you stand your ground/argue a position in the interview and provided you do that then you have as much chance as anyone getting a training contract. Maybe some will call it spin but if you look in their grad recruitment booklet their ex senior partner stated "never believe you can't be one of us". It's that mindset you need to have.
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    A law career is not impossible for you. Your GCSE's are not that bad (on TSR anything less than straight A's is seen as rubbish which is just stupid). The emphasis is more on the A levels than GCSE's for firms. Your A levels are not a complete disaster by any means. Being honest though, I would say getting into a Magic Circle and major city firm would be quite difficult because of the A level filters (need AAB/ABB minimum). However, there are many other firms other than the Magic Circle etc and many people get so hooked up on them they forget there are many other good firms around. Firms like Irwin Mitchell and Slater and Gordon (very good for personal injury etc) take a lot of non Russell Group grads. I know you said you were more looking for commercial law etc. What you need is to join and utilise Aspiring Solicitors. It was created by a commercial solicitor who like you did not study at a Russell Group uni but trained at a big city firm and has worked in a US firm. There are so many success stories on their website about people they have helped overcome certain hurdles such as A level grades, being a non Russell Group uni grad etc and it is really inspiring. They run loads of workshops with firms and advice clinics etc so I do advise it. I will be doing Law at a Russell Group in September but will still utilise Aspiring Solicitors, many Russell Group students use it too so do not see it as a last resort for those who are not at a RG etc. Do not give up, work hard and try and go for a 2:1 or 1st, do lots of extra curricular, attend law fairs etc. Aspiring Solicitors may even be visiting your uni at some point!
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    Think you need to be realistic. Your chances of getting into Magic Circle are miniscule. You dont attent the right Uni and you dont have the grades.

    There are still many excellent firms outside the Magic Circle..

    Saying you are lazy inst going to cut it so you need to get your backside into gear and get a good grade at least. If you dont know what you are doing then it will show and you will get stampeded by the hordes of well focused hard working applicants desparate to qualify.

    Other A levels is a no, becayse you need to focus on your degree.
    LLM rarely improves, its too late and its expensive. It can help in certain situations but it has to be relevant and add something.
    You need to go and do some research if you dont know the qualifying process and timetables, because your competitors will.
    You cna get some work experience, but you really need to do things that arent just entry fee, but things that make you stand out from everyone else who has a 2:1 and done 2 bits of work experience etc.

    It sounds like you are falling behind, so you need to spend some time doing research and staying on top. Its very competitive as many people find it later on down he line, but you have time to pull your socks up and put things right.
 
 
 
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