London-based wannabe solicitor seeks to raise £15,000
An aspiring lawyer who covered the cost of her law degree through online stripping has launched a crowdfunding campaign to pay her Legal Practice Course (LPC) fees.
Vanessa Knowles (pictured) fears that her previous career will preclude her from being offered a training contract and sponsored LPC place by a leading law firm. So she has turned to crowdfunding website Indiegogo, where she is offering a variety of incentives to encourage contributions. They range from a follow from her Twitter account to signed photos and even a personal ‘thank you’ via Skype or FaceTime. On her Indiegogo page the legal hopeful explains the thinking behind the initiative:
“I am 26, female, mixed race and from Yorkshire. After a long time feeling like I would be a stripper forever I decided to embark on a completely new path.
“I am aware of the difficulties that I will face but I intend to face them head on with honesty and integrity. I cannot promise I will be a solicitor one day as there are so many barriers working against me but I can promise I will try!”
Knowles previously caught the attention of Legal Cheek after tweeting pleas for help with the cost of law textbooks via an Amazon Wishlist she had set up for her admirers. The Mail Online would later report that she had funded the entire cost of her undergraduate law degree at a London university through online stripping.
With its absence of racy content, Knowles’ LPC funding campaign represents something of a change of direction. Notable is the inclusion on her Indiegogo page of a section headed “diversity” in which the legal hopeful writes:
“A lot of people have resentment towards solicitors and barristers. There is an idea that they are typically Oxbridge educated, white and male. This is typically true but it is not the case everywhere. The legal profession is very traditional which I appreciate completely but I take my education very seriously and feel that everyone should be judged on their merits regardless of age, sex, race etc. I think the legal profession should reflect the people it aims to represent and that should not just mean large faceless corporations.”
The campaign, which has been running for under a week, still has a long way to go. At the time of writing it had generated £147 of the £15,000 target.
Knowles discussed her hunt for a training contract earlier this year on the Legal Cheek podcast. When we contacted her about the crowdfunding campaign, Knowles confirmed that she had set it up last weekend and remains undecided about which LPC provider she will choose if she raises enough money to fund her studies.
The crowdfunding page is here.