Once upon a time, when higher education was free and jobs plentiful, a generation of slackers bounded decadently through university, scraped 2:1s, before gently easing themselves into the working world after multiple gap years. Legal Cheek‘s Kevin Poulter and Alex Aldridge remember this time fondly. But things have changed, as the experience of this week’s law student podcast guests, Faizah Oluokan and — joining us over the phone — James Ilman, illustrates…
Birmingham City LLB student Oluokan, 21, combines her law degree with two part-time jobs — one, during the week as an administrator at a law firm, and the other at the weekend as a supervisor in Waitrose. “It means you really have to do as much studying as you can while you are in class,” she says, adding that “loans don’t stretch very far”.
23 year-old Inman, meanwhile, is working full-time in IT while completing his Open University law degree over four years. He is hoping that law firms and barristers’ chambers will look favourably on his ability to juggle work and study as he applies for graduate positions.
The challenge for both is balancing their jobs with their ambition to get first class degrees — increasingly important for students at non-traditional universities after first year law student numbers rose by 11% this year, making the hunt for training contracts even more competitive.
Will Oluokan and Inman manage to pull it off? And how do they feel about the decadent generation that went before them? All is revealed in the podcast below — also available on iTunes.