At the beginning of year 10, I was picked for the Brilliant Club. The scheme exists to increase the number of pupils from underrepresented backgrounds progressing to highly-selective universities. The Brilliant Club consisted of having weekly discussions with a PhD student throughout the year on varying matters with the opportunity to hand in an extended essay at the end. These weekly discussions were the first time I had conversations with academics and felt as though my opinions were heard. I later found out that I could receive a similar teaching style at a place called Oxford University, and with that, I was sold.
I later went on to be accepted on the LMH foundation year, a free and fully funded year at Oxford for those from disadvantaged backgrounds to enable them to fulfil their academic potential. My experience on the foundation year was life changing! It provided me with the opportunity to experience Oxford, to have the tutorials that the year 10 me so longed for. Since coming to Oxford, I have found it both academically challenging and intellectually stimulating.
My decision to read Law was simple. I am curious about how the world is today and how the world should be tomorrow. I am inspired by clear thinking, the skill to taking an ambiguous mess of a problem and finding a compelling chain of reasoning to chart a clear path forward. It is my understand that reading Law at Oxford would help fulfil my curiosity as to how the world operates whilst developing me into a person who is able think and articulate themselves in a clear manner.
Last year I was surprised and delighted to be a recipient of a Freshfields Stephen Lawrence 2020 Scholarship, a scheme designed to address the disproportionate under-representation of black and black mixed-race men from less socially mobile backgrounds in large commercial law firms and other ‘City’ careers. Over the last six months through the Scholarship I have been able to gain great exposure into the legal industry and beyond. My mentors through the scholarship have been able to offer reassurance and advice.
Throughout my academic journey I have had an immense amount of encouragement and support, without which I would not be where I am today. I am truly thankful and honoured for the opportunities I have been given.
Ahmed, Law LMH.