Jake Goldby, LLB student

Jake Goldby is taking an LLB and has recently undertaken an internship with Cartwright King Solicitors; a leading law firm in the East Midlands.

Choosing law at Derby

"A degree, particularly in the legal industry, opens that first door, behind which numerous other doors lie. This is why I felt a degree would help me.

"Unlike other universities, Derby Law School places an equal amount of weight on both academic and practical application of the Law. This meant that one day you had your head buried in books researching for land law and the next you were addressing a district judge in an advocacy assessment.

"The diversity provided by the University is something which definitely maintained my interest and which has helped me during my internship."

A supportive environment

"Law as a degree can be quite stressful and demanding but it would not be a well-recognised degree if this was not the case.

"However, both the lecturers and the support staff at the University have a genuine interest in their students and their success. They make a conscious effort to get to know their students personally and to help those who are trying to help themselves.

"The support team are, in my opinion, one of Derby Law School’s greatest assets. If I were to give any advice to new students, it would be to build a relationship with this team as it will be your greatest investment."

My placement experience

"I was fortunate enough to secure a nine month internship with Cartwright King Solicitors.

"During my time so far, I have become heavily involved in all aspects, from attending court to holding interviews with clients. The job has been both diverse and exciting. It has been a very steep learning curve but one which I value greatly and will undoubtedly use in my future career.

"I felt extremely comfortable at the firm from the very start. The team expect a lot of you and give you responsibility from the outset. However they do not leave you in the dark and provide every bit of support needed to be successful."

Preparation for my career

"There are several opportunities available to law students which can enhance their career potential significantly. Derby Law School offers an in-house Advice Clinic which provides students with invaluable practical experience. This has become a prerequisite for any aspiring solicitor looking to break into the legal market.

"The legal industry offers a career with diversity, academic rigor and excitement and I am currently making every effort to break into this industry. The University has always supported me in pursuing this goal and I am thankful for this."

On-campus facilities

"The law facilities are excellent! There is an up to date, fully equipped, working courtroom which has really allowed us to be fully immersed into the working life of an advocate. It also provides a sense of professionalism and discipline in assessments which I truly believe has been partly to thank for our success in mooting and legal skills competitions.

"Having gone on to participate in a placement year, the experience in the University courtroom has left me feeling comfortable when attending court, knowing who’s who and what’s what. Simple things, but things I did not learn to appreciate until I was regularly attending court with senior professionals."

The most enjoyable aspects for me

"As I am sure every law student will agree, getting a First on an assignment is a fantastic and relieving feeling. You put so much effort into your assignments and for it come back with a positive result is a great feeling.

"Although it's a demanding course, I also found that there was a good work/social life balance within the Law School. As well as academic and career support, the Law School recognise that their students need a social element and put on events throughout the year; most notably the end of year party. The Law Society is also one of the best societies at Derby.

"For me personally however, there is one feeling that tops them all – recognition. To be recognised for your work can mean the difference between getting where you want to be or not.

"An example of this is when I secured the placement with Cartwright King. The Law School could not praise me enough and seemed as though they were genuinely proud. This was hugely encouraging.

"Coupled with this, since working at Cartwright King, I have had legal recruiters, solicitors and barristers contact me on Linkedin and via email all interested to meet me – one of which I secured a mini pupillage with. It is this recognition then, which is the biggest highlight for me."

Why I'd recommend Derby

"I would absolutely recommend a degree at Derby. What the University does well is recognise potential and embrace it. The Law School in particular, noted a change in the legal market and thus adapted their curriculum and lecturing style to meet the necessary requirements.

"It is a place that offers you invaluable, realistic advice and ensures that by the time you throw your graduation cap into the air, you are more than prepared for the working world."

LLB student, Jake Goldby, in a meeting at his placement law firm "Although it's a demanding course, I found that there was a good work/social life balance within the Law School. They put on events throughout the year; most notably the end of year party."