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Edinburgh Uni grad scoops full SQE1 scholarship with ‘law firm of the future’ essay

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Natalie Northridge receives £3k for BARBRI course

A graduate of the University of Edinburgh has won a full SQE1 scholarship with BARBRI for her vision of what the law firm of the future will look like.

Natalie Northridge, 26, is a step closer to fulfilling her solicitor ambitions after securing funding worth £3,000 as part of the legal education giant’s new initiative testing commercial awareness and creative thinking.

Northridge, who graduated with a first class degree in social anthropology, submitted a 1,000 word essay on ‘The law firm of the future’ which the judges considered to be “the most original and innovative” submission.

In her essay, Northridge predicts that further advancements in AI technology will lead to greater and more sophisticated automation — so much so that law, business and even life itself will take place inside virtual realities. She explains this will add new dimensions (and challenges) to the work done by the trainee solicitor of the future.

Natalie Northridge

Speaking to Legal Cheek, Northridge said: “I am thrilled to have won this year’s SQE scholarship with BARBRI, and very thankful to both BARBRI and Legal Cheek for running the competition.”

Find out more about SQE Prep with BARBRI

Northridge, who will start BARBRI’s SQE1 prep course next year, added:

“It was a really fun and different piece to write, and I am really pleased that the judges enjoyed it. I am pursuing a career as a commercial solicitor and so I am sure that this will be an invaluable experience for my career journey.”

To be in with the chance of winning the award, students and graduates had to attend Legal Cheek and BARBRI’s ‘What corporate lawyers do’ virtual event in October.

Robert Dudley, international deputy managing director at BARBRI, said:

“At BARBRI we believe everyone should be given the opportunity to access the profession and that’s why we’re proud to have launched a number of SQE 1 Prep course scholarships to support the future SQE student body attending these events. This particular scholarship attracted a high number of excellent essays, however the judges were in agreement that Natalie’s submission was the most original and innovative.”

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