Health and beauty
Throughout the world, the population has become increasingly obese and overweight, and the sedentary lifestyle has resulted in a number of diseases that are inextricably linked to obesity. Coupled with the fact that the UK is fast approaching its childhood overweight threshold, which is predicted to go up in the coming years, it is clear that there is a clear link between growing childhood obesity and the serious problems of health and social mobility in the UK. As an adult, I am both thrilled and concerned that I have been able to become part of an exciting team at a law firm that is tackling this issue head on.
I have previously been volunteering for the Kids Free for Life Foundation at their Bristol HQ for some time, and whilst I found it interesting and inspiring, the organisation has been struggling to stay afloat. One of my colleagues is the Vice President of the Foundation’s London Chapter, so I have a great deal of understanding of the circumstances that the organisation is currently in. As at 2 April 2014, Kids Free for Life had only recently launched to London, but due to so much difficulty fundraising has yet to really get a grip on its goals. Whilst it is great to be able to work with them, there is a lot more that needs to be done to raise awareness of this devastating issue.
Law is a hugely important part of our society, and the significance of law and healthcare have made it one of the most lucrative sectors in legal practice. The job I have now is to establish ways that I can bring much-needed change to the law firm through the start of my placement, and I am so grateful to the Team for being supportive. Through my role in the Hospitality & General Practice department, I have the opportunity to work under the guidance of two of the most senior associates, and I am deeply honoured to be able to be a part of this development that will hopefully help the firm raise it status from parochial firm to internationally competitive law firm.
Fulfilling my role allows me to contribute, but it is equally important to learn something that I didn’t have to before. This is a big part of the reason why I’m so grateful to be employed at a law firm — the learning opportunities and the opportunities to show that I value my position. Through this experience of having someone mentored by an experienced person (both as an alumnus and as head of a team), I have been able to learn something that I might not have been able to learn from a more junior member of staff. To be able to work under this new head of the HLS Legal team means that you have a new position of power and they can therefore influence other members of the team as opposed to you being the one spearheading the whole process. This level of clout has allowed me to be able to influence colleagues with my knowledge of the newest practice areas, and allow them to gain a new insight into the law office. This is, for me, the most important thing as it will give you great opportunities to develop yourself — usually the only chance that a junior member has to gain much responsibility is to be given a role within the senior team. Not just an acting role, but a role that has much more scope for development than an additional position within the same department. This will give you the best chance of advancing your career, therefore giving you the greatest chance of having a successful career.
I am so grateful for having been able to start work in my first legal placement in Bristol, not just to gain a new job experience but also as an opportunity to strengthen the diversity at UKL. In particular, we have had a chance to join the company’s legal team and ‘fly the flag’ as we always have before as corporate partners. Being part of this distinct team means that we’re able to develop and learn from the same set of priorities that have been previously reaped. I can now join an organization that has been helping clients for over 90 years, and I am thankful that I will have the chance to be a part of something I believe will help the firm work towards a more sustainable positiona.