One Essex Court Scholarship
One Essex Court 2020-21 Scholar James Bailie-Gray
College: St Anne's
I studied undergraduate law at the University of Nottingham, graduating in 2019, before spending a year as a real estate paralegal at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP. I am currently reading for the BCL at St-Anne’s College.
Could you tell us about your journey to Oxford? Why did you choose to study at the Law Faculty?
I enjoyed my undergraduate studies immensely, and after spending a year in legal practice, I felt that the time was right to undertake further study.
The Oxford BCL is renowned for its academic rigour and quality of teaching. I felt that this would be the perfect environment in which to explore my academic passions further.
What do you hope to achieve whilst studying law in Oxford?
I hope to deepen my understanding of English private law, in both breadth and depth. Additionally, I wish to further develop my core legal skills in readiness for a career in law.
What have you found most rewarding about your programme so far?
It would most certainly be the stimulating conversation I have with my tutors and fellow students. Being able to discuss legal doctrine and theory with some of the brightest minds around is a great privilege.
What have you found most challenging about your programme so far?
Owing to the BCL’s reputation, I was expecting the workload to be heavy. It turned out that my expectation was accurate! There are intense periods where I have to work towards multiple deadlines, which makes for a tough, yet enjoyable experience.
Are you involved with or joined any projects or societies?
I am part of the University mooting society and have already participated in several moots. Oxford offers a plethora of competitions to get involved in, regardless of your experience and legal knowledge.
How has the scholarship benefitted your studies and professional development?
The scholarship ensured that I could focus on my studies without having to worry about my finances, for which I am exceedingly thankful. Furthermore, the mini-pupillage provided professional insight which I have used to enhance my pupillage applications.
Through the generosity of commercial chambers One Essex Court, this scholarship is worth £10,000 and is awarded annually to students embarking on the BCL, MJur or one year research degree (including one year of the DPhil). Available to UK , EU, and overseas students alike, this scholarship is for students with an interest in proceeding to the bar.