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Maya Badham: from History to Law – University of Reading

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  • Evolving aspirations

    Discover how Maya Badham combined History and Law to pursue a career that would make a difference

Maya Badham: from History to Law

​Maya chose to study BA History at the University of Reading; during her time here, Maya found her interests being shaped by her degree and she embarked on a Legal Master's in Human Rights Law, an area in which she now works.

"I immediately felt at home at the University of Reading, amongst the expansive green spaces and the beautiful lake, combined with the buzzing town centre and excellent transport links to London. Alongside this, the wide range of expertise offered by the History Department and the study abroad opportunities made Reading the perfect choice for me."

shaping history

Maya loved having the flexibility to pursue her growing interests, and to give her degree relevance to today's world:

"The module range on offer in the History Department really shone through for me. I could choose to be as niche or as broad as I wanted with a wide and varied module choice - it was incredibly exciting to learn from the authority on that subject and to read, and even conduct, cutting-edge research."

“In history there are no limits on the amount of ways you can view one event or subject. It's so unique and there's still so much to learn - history gives you scope to make the subject your own."

"History is, by nature, interdisciplinary. It mixes really well with a variety of other subjects, including English, Languages, Social Studies, Psychology, Politics, Philosophy, and Archaeology to name a few. At Reading it's really easy to take modules outside of the Department, which I did - I love how history can inform other subjects and vice versa to enhance your understanding."

"As a historian I enjoy learning how the past affects us now, in the present. It's really important to learn lessons from history and apply them to current affairs. Everything that is happening around us today has been influenced by and is a direct result of that which has preceded it. This makes history extremely relevant to us all, and has certainly helped me in my career today."

studying abroad

Maya recommends studying abroad as it allowed her to shine academically, while travelling the world:

"I made friends from all over the world and got to study at one of the top eight universities in Australia. It diversified my learning experience, by offering modules and teaching methods not available at Reading, and also taught me how to live independently in another country with a different culture. I was able to apply what I learned abroad to my studies once I returned and this helped me to achieve a well-rounded perspective of the subject."

"I have found that employers are extremely interested in my study abroad experience - it helps you to stand out from the crowd and shows that you are able to adapt quickly to different situations. I would 100% recommend studying abroad."

​making a difference

During her history studies Maya found myself drawn to law and human rights in particular, which led her to study for a Legal Master's in Human Rights Law at Reading:

"Honestly, I've ended up in a different place than where I thought I would be pre-university - but that is the beauty of the university experience. It allowed me to discover more about myself, the values I believe in and to hone in on what I wanted as a career.

I am now working as a Young Person's Independent Sexual Violence Advocate for a national charity. The main aspects of my job are providing specialist support to women and men aged 16-25 who are experiencing sexual and domestic violence, as well as providing survivors with information on the criminal justice process, and accompanying them to interviews and court.

In my history degree I focused on women's rights and sexual violence during war, and my master's introduced me to the police and justice systems which I now interact with frequently. I also did voluntary work for the Citizen's Advice Bureau as part of the RED Award at university. "

“I believe the combination of my degrees and experience helped me to secure my current job, and the skills and knowledge I acquired from my studies helps me to be successful in it."

"I am extremely happy in my job now, and am hoping to complete a PhD in the future, potentially in history with a focus on women's rights; perhaps I will come back to the University of Reading for that!"

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