Following the completion of his undergraduate degree, William decided to stay at Reading and study for an MRes in Law & Society.
A warm welcome
William credits the staff at Reading with creating such a friendly, supportive environment within the School of Law:
"The staff remembered me from the Open Day visit and, when I returned as a student, one of the lecturers greeted me with 'you made it!' Reading really has that personal touch."
"I also made use of the Student Support Services, who are amazing. They gave me loads of help and advice about studying and how to work efficiently. I also got really lucky with my academic tutor — she was brilliant and the tutor scheme in general seems excellent."
The opportunity to undertake pro bono work as an undergraduate was a big draw for William, who cites this type of voluntary work as a key reason why he chose to apply to the School of Law:
"Extra-curricular opportunities are important; mooting was a big one for me, and I got involved in internal competitions through the Law Society, even making it through to the semi-finals. There's a real buzz when you're speaking and being questioned and have to think on your feet to find an argument - it's a lot of fun."
"Mooting is great, especially for first years. If you want to be a barrister, or just want to improve your public-speaking skills, it's excellent practice. Mooting was, by far, my best experience as part of the Law Society."
"There are also plenty of courts in Reading: the Crown Court, Magistrates Court and County Court are only ten minutes down the road. You can watch a whole case quite quickly at the Magistrates Court and it brings the subject to life."
William recognises the support and guidance in place for law students to help set them apart from other graduates:
"The staff have lots of contacts who come in regularly to speak to the students, from barristers to people working in the public sector. They discuss their jobs and answer questions, which is great for developing commercial awareness outside of our academic study. A contract lawyer gave a session and he had some incredible stories — it's interesting to see how our learning fits in with the realities of the job."
"My academic tutor was a barrister before she was a lecturer. It's great that there are a number of academics from different backgrounds — if you're interested in a career in a particular field, they're amazing to talk to."
"There's also lots of help with CV preparation and both academic tutors and students services work hard to support you where needed."
A natural progression
Following the completion of his undergraduate degree, William felt that his journey with law and with Reading has not quite finished yet. William decided to stay back to complete an MRes in Law & Society and is now an early career researcher in the School.
William’s current research on contemporary surveillance activities and the impact this has upon public spaces, is funded by the South East Network for Social Sciences through a doctorial training partnership provided by the Economic Social Research Council.
"With the amazing support of the postgraduate studies team in the School of Law, I was able to secure a fully-funded 1+3 SeNSS ESRC studentship, which was one of the key reasons I chose to stay at Reading. Additionally, over the past 3 years of my undergraduate study, I have come to love the School of Law more and more and all the staff that make it excellent, so it’s a real pleasure to be able to stay back."
"I would recommend Reading School of Law to anyone interested in studying law. It's been a really positive experience for me."