Welcome to the Legal Line Up! We are a group of graduates and undergraduates who have secured Training Contracts and Vacation Schemes at elite global law firms. We aim to support aspiring commercial lawyers by sharing insights into the legal profession and advice on how to secure legal jobs.
Matthew Berrick – BA International Relations Graduate, starting the GDL in September. Secured a Vacation Scheme with Pinsent Masons.
I have completed a range of placements and roles that has provided me a foundational insight into the legal, political and economic influences that impact businesses. Having worked in organisations both in the United Kingdom and the United States I have gained an interest in cross jurisdictional legal work. Working in a variety of organisations has enabled me to experience different working environments and teams. I am confident at leading teams as well as being an excellent listener.
In my spare time I enjoy long distance running, playing chess as well as being a keen traveller!
Blaise Nsenguwera – LLB Law Graduate and Future Trainee Solicitor at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.
I have undergone various placements in a wide range of businesses. My experiences in the legal, financial and energy sector has given me the ability to understand how various businesses work and how the law applies to them. Also, having been a Freshfields Stephen Lawrence Scholar, I have learnt the values of diversity in a working environment and have learned how businesses are advancing their own diversity. These experiences have taught me fundamental skills such as communication, teamwork and leadership.
When I’m not reading books, I love playing and watching football (although Arsenal has often made me question this love), watching movies and listening to music.
Annabel Smith – LLB Law Graduate and Future Trainee Solicitor at Allen & Overy.
My experience in the legal sector ranges from small local high street firms, in-house and community firms, to regional, national, silver and magic circle firms. My first year at university saw me take hold of every opportunity I could and I took part in a few first-year insight days and schemes, one of which was at Allen & Overy, where I was fast-tracked to a training contract interview. I was successful here and accepted the offer in January of my second year. This allowed me to focus on other things whilst at university, so I have taken part in negotiating, but predominantly immersed myself in the pro bono opportunities Leeds has to offer, which is really important to me.
Outside of law, I am a keen horse rider and love to travel. For this reason, I have decided to defer my training contract so I can travel to Singapore and Bali (Coronavirus dependant) before moving to Australia for 10 months to become an au pair. I will then start the LPC in July 2021 and begin my training contract in March 2022.
Adam Leigh – Final Year LLB Law Student and Future Trainee Solicitor at Norton Rose Fulbright.
I am an LLB student currently on exchange to Queensland University of Technology in Australia.
I have done placements in different law firms from regional solicitors to city outfits and completed a couple of mini pupillages. These experiences have helped me to maintain a genuine interest in the law and how it adapts following international developments. Having co-founded a drop shipping business in the summer of 2018, I decided to pursue a career in commercial law to combine my energy for business and interest in law.
Outside of law, I love to travel, play lacrosse and football, and I am a die hard supporter of Liverpool FC. I have also found a passion for face-to-face sales, an industry I worked in for 6 months whilst studying in Australia.
Harry Hughes – LLB Law Graduate and Future Trainee Solicitor at Baker McKenzie.
I have completed two Vacation Schemes at law firms in London, and have secured a Training Contract at Baker McKenzie’s London office. I will be starting my LPC at BPP University in June 2021. During these Vacation Schemes, and in preparation for interviews and assessment centres, I focussed on improving my commercial awareness and developed an interest in understanding how different sectors interact with the legal sector.
Aside from all things law-related, I am a keen rugby player, captaining the Leeds Law Society Team, and enjoy staying active. I also enjoy hillwalking, and recently completed the Yorkshire Dales Challenge – a 26-mile hike across the Three Peaks.
Leen Kayali – LLB Law Graduate and Future Trainee Solicitor at Clifford Chance.
I grew up in Saudi Arabia and decided to study an LLB degree in the UK to gain an international education. While at university, I tried to make the most out of the opportunities that were available to me. I was the Law School’s Student Engagement Ambassador, the Course Representative of my year and a Campus Ambassador of a magic circle firm.
I am intrigued by the dual role international commercial lawyers play in acting as legal and business advisors for their clients. Having enjoyed my legal work experiences in London, Dubai and Riyadh – Saudi Arabia, I wanted to embark on a career that combines my interests in commercial law with my international outlook and multilingual background. This is why Clifford Chance’s Middle East training contract, split between the firm’s London and Dubai offices, was particularly appealing to me. In my spare time, you can find me in the kitchen cooking dishes for family and friends.
I am excited to work alongside my peers from ‘The Legal Line Up’ to benefit as many future lawyers as possible in realising their potential.
Gemma Shohet – Penultimate Year LLB Law with Hispanic Law Student. Secured Vacation Schemes with Linklaters, Clifford Chance and Norton Rose Fulbright.
I study Law and Hispanic Law and have recently completed my year abroad at Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
As a student, I have been heavily involved in Leeds University’s Law Society, elected as Female First Year Representative and General Secretary. During my time as First Year Representative, I attended networking events with various City law firms and through this, I became interested in pursuing a career in commercial law. I went on to undertake work experience at both magic and silver circle law firms and am due to participate in 3 Vacation Schemes this summer.
In my free time, I enjoy singing, baking, boxercise and running. I also love to travel and hope to visit more of the Spanish-speaking world to keep up my fluency in Spanish.