Short hair… Don’t care!

So I never thought I would be writing a blog post titled Short hair… Don’t care! on here.

As you all know a lot of my content is law related, whether my own career, study tips, legal news, events, tips for lawyers and law firms growing their online presence etc.  So why a blog post called Short hair… Don’t care!?  Well, after a little incident on the train the other night, I need to have a little rant.

On Friday night I was on the tube in London and there was a mum and her little boy and girl. The little girl looked at me, then to her mum, and said “that girl has really cool hair”, to which her mum replied, “You don’t want to look like that, she looks like a lesbian. Only girls who are lesbians have short hair, boys don’t ever fancy girls with short hair”.

Thanks for making all of these comments loud enough that I could hear you.  It took all the willpower I had in me to not correct you.  I am not an argumentative person and I am not someone who would ever speak out of turn, or make a scene, however, your comments are completely unnecessary.

Short hair... Don't care! Click To Tweet

To the lady on the train, for the record, and not that it is any of your business, but I am not a lesbian.  I have short hair because I want to have short hair, and I like how it looks.  Oh, and I have been in relationships, so clearly guys do like girls with short hair.  Yes, not every girl has super short hair like me, but I don’t care.  If anything I like looking a little bit different.

I have always had short hair, various forms of short hair.  From a bob, to a super short pixie cut, I change it up as often as I want to.  I have a long fringe at times, then like recently, I cut the long fringe off.  I also have it undercut.  It doesn’t make me a boy and it also doesn’t make me a lesbian.

Last time I checked my hair hasn’t impacted on my education, my career, my relationships, my family or friends etc.  I have a law degree, I run a blog, I speak at universities and to rooms full of law students, I speak at conferences and events all over the world, I have worked in law firms whilst studying to become a barrister, oh and my family and friends don’t seem to be bothered by my short hair.

Also, and this might shock you, but there are lesbians with long hair.  So assuming someone’s sexuality based on their hair cut is properly a bad idea.

For the record, whilst some guys might not like girls with short hair, some do.  My short hair doesn’t make me any less of a girl.  It should go without saying that different people like their partners (whatever sexuality) for various reasons, everyone has their own type.

One final thing, lady on the train – whilst we are on the subject of me having short hair, I don’t care what you or anyone else thinks of it.  Yes I have written this post, but not because your comments upset or hurt me, but because we live in the 21st century and assumptions like the one you made are completely unwarranted and unnecessary.  So as the title suggests, Short hair… Don’t care!

Plus, and whilst I would never ever tell anyone how to raise their children, you are potentially raising children that think it okay to judge someone and assume someone’s sexuality based on their hair style.  You might also deter your own child when she is an adult from having short hair for fear of “looking like a lesbian”.  So please stop.

As a grown up with short hair, I have never really experienced the “oh, she’s definitely a lesbian’ thing, thankfully! Yes I did a lot at school, but that was over 10 years ago, and whilst it was not nice or warranted then, I just got on with it.  However, I am now 26 and I don’t need you telling other people on a train what you believe my sexuality to be, straight or gay.  It isn’t any of your business, and quite frankly it never will be.

Rebecca x

 

 

LITM Q&A Series | Isobel Wright

In this post on my LITM Q&A series, Isobel Wright talks about her experiences of studying law and being an in-house trainee.

What made you decide to study law? 

I have wanted to become a solicitor since before I can remember. So, I always knew I would study law at university. I have never considered anything else.

Where did you study law? Where did you study the LPC?

I have a joint honours degree in Law and French from Swansea University. I studied the harmonisation of international laws at the University of Geneva and International Environmental Law at the Graduate Institute of Geneva. I studied the LPC at the University of Law Guildford and have so far completed the core modules of the PSC at BPP.

What was your favourite module to study, and why?

I would say employment law (not that it’s what I do now!). My lecturer for the llb had many years of experience and was incredibly knowledgeable. She always gave detailed examples of situations she had experienced during her career and her lectures were engrossing. I later volunteered at the GERALD clinic at UoL and my role was to speak to the clients and find out the background details. I found the cases so interesting and people were so honest about their situations. It was gripping!

What, if any, extra-curricular activities did you get involved in whilst studying law?

I didn’t participate in many group activities or organised groups post college. I got really into the gym and lifting weights (nothing impressive) and I took part in some classes with the dance society. I also attended quite a few French related groups and events. At the UoL I volunteered at the GERALD clinic, had the opportunity to shadow a judge, took part in charity events/fund raising. In Geneva (ERASMUS year) I was part of some ex-pat groups.

You are doing your Training Contract in-house, what made you want to go in-house?

It actually happened by happy accident! I have previous experience in-house and I love the environment. Two years ago I was headhunted for a temp position as a legal assistant. I was honest in my interview about my goals and wanting to find a training contract, which I was aware could not be done at this company (they weren’t a training contract provider at the time) but even still, after my initial interview, I was offered a permanent role. I love the job and quickly became a part of the team. After a few months my boss asked me to look into how the company could become a training contract provider and offered me a TC! 

How have you found your Training Contract so far?

It’s been very busy. I’m lucky to have had the opportunity to do my TC in-house. The sales team don’t see me as a trainee and the work is spread out evenly. We’re a close team and I can ask anyone anything at anytime. So, I have a lot of responsibility but I’m also incredibly supported.

What area of law do you hope to qualify into?

At the moment I would say IT Law but I’m not entirely certain yet.

What are your future plans? Legal related? Long term? Short term?

Short term: finish my TC and become a fully qualified solicitor!
Long term: To be a solicitor! Compared to a lot of other professions, there’s not often a lot of room for upwards progression in-house (I’m not sure if that’s the case everywhere but it has been in my experience in several in-house teams). At the moment I’m happy where I am and I can only imagine being here. There’s still so much to learn and I want to grow as much as possible and gain as much experience as I can. I love my team and since joining I have had constant opportunities to learn and improve. Both legally and in other areas (I have been able to create my own software and I am learning to code). So, it’s an exciting place to be!

If you could give one piece of advice to people considering studying law, what would it be?

Just do it! If you’re already set on a career in law – go for it. Do not doubt yourself.
If you’re not sure what you want to do in the future, there are so many doors that will open for you when you have a law degree. It will stand you in good stead for the future regardless of what you decide to do. I know many people who have a law degree and have subsequently pursued a different and successful career. Once I graduated I was inundated with calls from recruiters inviting me to interviews for all sorts of jobs!

YouTube Videos Round Up

YouTube Videos Round Up

Why have I written a YouTube videos round up post?

Well… I am really enjoying filming some new content and videos for my YouTube channel and if you read my blog you will know I recently uploaded a post and video titled ‘Where have I been?’.  This blog and video discussed my plans for my YouTube channel going forward and what content I will be sharing.  The content will be for law students and lawyers, so keep an eye out.

In the meantime I thought I would do a quick round up of some of the videos I have uploaded so far.  Every link will open in a new tab, so you can watch the video with ease and then come back to this post.

What is Lawyer In The Making?

When I first gave me blog a design overhaul (quite a few years ago), I decided I wanted a short video explaining what you could expect from my blog.  I still love and use this video (even if it looks a little old now) plus I was determined to make sure the butterfly made it in to the video.

My Q&A Video

I pulled together a few of the frequently asked questions I receive on a regular basis, and answered them in a YouTube video.  This video is what sparked further videos being created, seeing as you liked this one so much, and gave me such lovely feedback.   I cover frequently asked questions about my career, my blog and why I blog!

My new promo video

This is my new promo video, it contains me answering a couple of the frequently asked questions that I covered in my Q&A video.  It is great to use at events or just to share with people if they want a quick overview of what this blog is about!

Does LinkedIn Still Work?

I believe it still has a massive role to play in terms of online engagement for lawyers and law students.   See my thoughts here.

25 Random Facts About Me

This video helps you get to know me (the girl behind the blog) a little bit better.  I always try and keep my content personal but professional.  I keep my private life private, but always try and be approachable and friendly in the content I share, as well as honest.  This video gives you a little insight into the things I love, my upbringing, the sorts of holidays I love and what I get up to in my spare time.  As well as my love for Costa Hot Chocolate and crime/law related box-sets.

Stressing About Advocacy?

Public speaking does not always come naturally to us.  Getting up and speaking in front of your class, or even in an advocacy task can be daunting.  Here are 4 basic tips to help calm those nerves and make you feel more confident.

Stressing about advocacy, here are 4 tips to help you… Click To Tweet

Get in the Lawyer Mindset | Attend Legal Events

If you follow me on any of my social media platforms (or read my blog regularly) then you will know I am a massive advocate of law students attending legal events.  Whether that is a seminar on a legal topic of interest, a public lecture, a conference – it is really important you try as law students attend some.  Watch more on this here.

How do you follow up with people after an event?

In this video I share some of my top tips for following up with people you have met at events.  Whether they told you to email them, or send across a CV etc.  here are my tips for ensuring you do it well!

Law Students | How to use Twitter like a pro

If you have been following me for a while, then you will know that Twitter is my go to platform for all things law.  It is the one I recommend law students and lawyers use, whether for research, news or engagement.  I pulled together some of my top tips for law students, on how to use twitter like a pro – check it out here.  Oh and I guess I can shamelessly plug my own twitter here, so give me a follow!

5 Top Tips For Using Twitter (Law Firms)

This video contains 5 very simple tips to help you use twitter better.  The content isn’t just applicable to law firms though, they are useful for tips for lawyers and law students.

5 Further Tips For Using Twitter 

In the interests of you, I didn’t want to make a stupidly long video (no one has time to watch that right?) so here are 5 further twitter tips!

My 2017 Law School Mission

You will see from my tweets that I find it really frustrating when law schools aren’t utilising social media or their websites properly.  It is great way to engage better with their current students, other law schools and potential students.  Check out my 2017 law School mission here.

Are you having problems at University?

Studying law can at times be challenging and you shouldn’t have to suffer alone.  Equally if you are having problems at university or at home and these things are impacting on your studies then you need to speak to someone.  Speaking to someone at your university can help get the problem resolved a lot quicker, even if it is just some additional support, a deadline extension or an acknowledgement that the fact the heating is never on will be looked into! Watch this video here.

I hope you enjoying checking out my YouTube Videos Round Up, and don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel whilst you are on one of my videos. Alternatively click here and then subscribe.  It just means you never miss an new video.

Should I create another YouTube Videos Round Up post in six months time?

Rebecca x

p.s. Don’t forget you can learn more about how to use social media on my 7 day online social media school, which only costs £70.  You can work through it in your own time, it covers the basics, but some more advanced bits as well – helping you to feel more confident using social media in the legal sector.

LITM Q&A Series | Saira Shani

In this post on the LITM Q&A Series Saira Shani shares her experiences.

What do you study, where and what year?

I am a final year law student at BPP Manchester.

What made you decide to study law?

I originally applied on UCAS for Children’s Nursing, however my grades were higher than I expected so I went through adjustment and found that my grades met the entry requirements for law at BPP Law School. I never had the self-belief that I could study law but two years later, I am embarking on my final year having been predicted a 2:1.

What has been your favourite module to study so far, and why?

My favourite module so far, is one I am currently studying, that is Company Law. I have found that the intrinsic nature of company law and how it impacts us on a day to day basis, is so fascinating. I would highly encourage other student who are considering module options to consider Company Law, as it is the foundations for so many other areas of law such as Commercial, Banking and Finance Law.

Have you got involved with any extra-curricular law activities?

I have been involved with the Aspiring Solicitors network where I am a Campus Ambassador, they offer events and support for all students to pursue a career in law. My aim this year is to get involved in mooting and advocacy, which is something I have not yet experienced.

What work experience have you undertaken? Any that stood out as being a favourite?

I have had experience with solicitors and barristers, I have done two work placements at law firms in Cheshire and Manchester. I spent 3 months at 1 King’s Bench Walk, a specialist family chambers. I volunteer with the Personal Support Unit in the Manchester Civil Justice Centre. I think my volunteering as been my favourite, being able to assist on real cases and understanding that to practice law means so much more than just being able to regurgitate the law. I have sat in on many criminal cases at the Manchester Crown Court, I have witnessed murder and drugs trials. So I was able to see the Criminal Justice System and how its process differs from the Civil Courts.

How do you maintain a study/life balance?

A planner, I use my planner every single day. I put in assignment deadlines, application deadlines, appointments, meetings and revision time. I make sure that every hour in my day is accounted for, so that I am as productive as I can be.

What are your future plans? Legal related? Long term? Short term?

I have so many plans, that I don’t know which to do first. In terms of a legal career, I hope to pursue a career at the Chancery Bar. I am also interested in being an Investment Manager and in 10 years, I want to start my own investment management company.


If you could give one piece of advice to people considering studying law, what would it be?

You don’t have to have it all figured out. When studying law, the natural assumption is that you will either be a barrister or solicitor. However, the skills that you gain will make you a valuable asset in so many different industries from politics to human resources. Just enjoy your time at university, as some of the highly regarded practitioners at the Bar, came to the profession later in life having previously worked in other industries.

Let’s talk… FRU

As a law student you will no doubt be encouraged to do some volunteering or pro-bono, and the name FRU will be mentioned a lot.

What is FRU?

FRU is the Free Representation Unit.  They are an independent charity which was established back in 1972.  They rely on volunteers.  These volunteers represent clients in the Employment Tribunal and the Social Security Tribunal in London and the South East.

If you are wondering how work gets referred to FRU for consideration, then check out the website as it has a great section all about the referral process.

As well as doing what they do, they also comment on public consultations and a big topic of conversation at the moment is Legal Aid.  You can check out some of their reports and comments on various legal reforms, consultations and more here.

What does a volunteer do?

If a volunteer can assist in a particular matter they can prepare the case for trial and attend the hearing with the client as their advocate.   Law students (who make up most of FRU’s volunteers) are selected, trained and supervised by full time staff.  For more information about volunteering, read up on the process here.

All the information on the necessary training days, requirements, fees etc. can be found here and it is recommended you look at dates and availability.

Why is volunteering great for law students?

Volunteering is a great way to give something back but also develop your own skills.

There are also plenty of other organisations that take volunteers, not just FRU.  In one of my LITM Q&A Interviews Josh Levy talked about some pro bono work he did and the benefits to him.  You can read more about it on the Josh Levy interview.

Rebecca x