Trainee solicitor’s dual qualification dream boosted by SQE scholarship award

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By Anuja Venkataramani on

Lauren White secures a 50% discount on BARBRI’s SQE1 Prep Course

Lauren White, a trainee solicitor at Scottish law firm Thorntons, has secured a part-scholarship for BARBRI’s SQE1 Prep Course with her essay on what motivates people to become solicitors in the 21st century.

Deciding fairly early on that she wanted to study law at university, White chose to complete a Scots and English Law LLB at the University of Dundee. Graduating in June 2022, she went on to do the Diploma in Professional Legal Practice at the University of Glasgow, and is currently doing her traineeship at Scottish law firm Thorntons. White has recently completed her first seat in residential property and will shortly be commencing her second seat in the corporate and commercial team.

Speaking to Legal Cheek about her motivations for completing the SQE and qualifying as a solicitor in England and Wales, White says: “My degree was in both jurisdictions so I think it would be great to see both halves of my degree out to the end. It also broadens my job opportunities in the future which I believe will give me an advantage in an increasingly competitive industry”.

To find out more about BARBRI’s SQE Prep course and funding opportunities, please visit the website

She goes on to add: “A more personal reason is that whilst my dad is Scottish and I have lived in Scotland for most of my life, my mum, who sadly passed away 10 years ago, was English. So, I have always seen myself as half and half and feel it is important to respect both halves and keep both alive. Qualifying in both jurisdictions is a further opportunity to do this. Studying for the SQE alongside my traineeship will also mean I should qualify in both jurisdictions around the same time.”

White’s winning essay explored the topic of what motivates young people to become solicitors in the 21st century, and she gives a sneak peek into its main themes.

“I explored the desire to fight for social justice, the rewarding challenge of a career in law as well as the financial reasons that young people may choose to pursue a career in law. I underpinned all of these reasons by exploring the fact that all areas of law exist to help people, whether they are going through the harder parts of life like divorce or the death of a loved one or something more exciting like starting a new business or purchasing a new home.”

She continues: “Throughout my essay, I explored the need to help people and fight for what is right. This is seen in every area of law from being a human rights lawyer or a corporate lawyer to being an environmental lawyer.”

White notes that it “feels amazing” to have won the scholarship, and that it has gone a long way to mitigating the financial pressure of completing the SQE. “It is unlikely that I would have been able to complete the course so early on in my career without the scholarship”, she explains. Also noting the reflective aspect of writing the essay, White finds that it was nice to go back and consider the reasons why she chose to pursue a career as a solicitor – “It has helped me refocus and reminded me that my main focus is to help people”, she says.

Speaking on White’s win, BARBRI senior tutor Joanne White commented:

“We are delighted to have collaborated again with Legal Cheek on the latest scholarship. It is a key goal of BARBRI to provide students with opportunities to access the legal profession. Our scholarships are a vehicle for this, and we are grateful that Legal Cheek could provide a platform for students to apply. Lauren’s submission stood out and we are excited about her starting her SQE1 Prep journey this spring.”

To find out more about BARBRI’s SQE Prep course and funding opportunities, please visit the website here.

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