Case study

Legal dream opened new doors for ‘youngest councillor’

Ikra Yasin’s lifelong aspiration to become a solicitor has taken her in a new direction. The skills she learned on our Law LLB (Hons) course have helped her become the youngest councillor in East Anglia.

Applying skills in the real world

Ikra was just 22 when she was elected as a councillor for Peterborough City Council in 2019. She puts her election down to her ability to use the skills she developed on our course and apply them in the real world.

“I fought one of the toughest elections in Peterborough,” Ikra explains. “I was against someone with 30 years of experience. I was determined to win.

“All the strong advocacy skills I have gained during my course made me able to address the public in a very confident manner. I have made several speeches and given TV interviews. I could only have done this because of my communication skills being strengthened during the course of my degree.”

Growing in confidence

Not only has our degree given Ikra practical law skills, it has helped Ikra grow as a person. She says: “I am much more confident now. I am a completely different person from when I began University, in such a positive way. I can talk to anyone without any hesitation.

“University has matured me a lot as I had never lived away from home before. I learned to manage my studies, work part-time and focus on politics, all because of the support I received from the University.

“I have become completely independent and have learned so much during my time at Derby. And I know I can use the skills I have obtained for my future career.”

Ikra still has dreams to be a solicitor. She is going on to study LLM Legal Practice Course part-time while serving on Peterborough City Council, the next stage of qualifying as a solicitor.

 Ikra Yasin stood with Gordon Brown
Ikra Yasin with former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown

Choosing Derby

Visiting us on an Open Day helped convince Ikra to choose Derby as her student home. And, within the first week at Derby, she knew that our Law LLB (Hons) course was exactly what she needed to help her achieve her dream of becoming a solicitor.

She said: “The teaching is second to none. All the lecturers are so passionate about the area of law they teach, and support is always available.

“Every piece of material I could possibly require was easily accessible via Blackboard, our online student portal. Lecture slides, lecture notes, module handbooks, lecture recordings and much more are readily available for you to download and use should you have missed any information in your classes or need to re-cover any discussion points.”

More than just a degree

The University of Derby offers students opportunities to work with law firms and be a part of social groups. Ikra took the opportunity to undertake a one-week placement at The Right Legal Group in Derby. And she also participated in the Legal Skills Triathlon 2019, in which she and her team came third.

She said: “The University of Derby is so brilliant. I don’t think I could have achieved so much if I didn’t have the support that was made available to me. If there is any University you could go to, come to the University of Derby. You will have an experience like no other.”

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