James Pantefedwyn Foundation

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Siriol Elin Jones

After graduating from Bangor University in 2020 with a First Class LLB Law Degree, I was accepted by the University of Law, Chester on the Legal Practice and the Masters of Law (LLM) course. I was fortunate to receive a grant from the James Pantyfedwen Foundation which helped towards the tuition fees. The course is essential before applying for a solicitor’s training contract, but the course is extremely expensive, so receiving the grant enabled me to fulfil my hopes of completing the course.

I have enjoyed every minute of university life and it has certainly expanded my legal skills. The course was practical and involved a number of different assessments, including oral and written examinations. In addition to postgraduate work pressures, which were very different to undergraduate work, we had to face the challenges of Covid-19; obtaining work experience was difficult, there were on-line sessions, virtual workshops and meetings, exams were on-line, and of course, the social element of the course was problematic. However, I did successfully complete the course which has certainly prepared me for the practical world of work and how to apply my skills and adapt to the workplace.

During the second term, it was possible to choose optional modules, and I chose to study Family Law, Employment, Crime and Commerce, providing the skills needed to work with clients.  As part of the LLM course, with the dissertation module, I chose to broaden my interest in Family Law by researching on the topic of 'Surrogacy' and its direct impact on the children, parents and the surrogate. I am also very interested in criminal law and have been fortunate to receive a training contract with the Crown Prosecution Service for September 2021.

Receiving the financial support from the James Pantyfedwen Foundation has not only given me the opportunity to study the course but also given me the motivation to succeed. I am very grateful for the grant and believe it has given me additional opportunities and been a key part of my development and journey as a lawyer.