School of Law Hits the Top 20 in Student Satisfaction

The School of Law at Swansea University has recorded another stellar performance in the official National Student Survey, published in September 2012. Swansea Law School came 17th out of 96 law schools in the UK, and achieved the highest student satisfaction levels in Wales overall. 94 per cent of students on the Swansea LLB felt that they were satisfied with the quality of the course. Students awarded particularly high marks in questions relating to teaching, with 95 per cent of students thinking that Swansea law staff are good at explaining things and 93 per cent saying that the course is intellectually stimulating.

In addition to recording high levels of student satisfaction, the Law School performed strongly on the issue of employability. 90 per cent of Swansea LLB graduates recorded being in employment and/or further study, and 62 per cent of those employed held a professional or managerial job six months after the course.

Professor Jukka Snell, the Director of Undergraduate Studies at Swansea Law School said: ‘This is a tremendous achievement. The students are pleased with all aspects of their experience here, but it is particularly satisfying to see how highly they rate the teaching on our LLB. This speaks volumes about the dedication and skills of my colleagues. It is also excellent to see that the great majority of our students quickly secure a graduate job or continue to postgraduate study after their course. We have put a lot of effort into our employability initiatives, such as ground-breaking placement schemes, and this is really paying off.’

The National Student Survey (NSS) is a comprehensive survey of students’ views across the UK, carried out by Ipsos-MORI.  The survey is anonymous. The full results can be found at http://unistats.direct.gov.uk.

School of Law Careers Fair 2012

On 7th  March 2012, the School of Law hosted its third Annual Careers Fair, with employers including JCP Solicitors, Eversheds, Holman Fenwick Willan LLP and The Britannia Steam Ship Insurance Association Ltd just to name a few. Over 100 law students attended and found the event to be very enjoyable as well as informative.  A notable feature of the Fair was the number of former Swansea Graduates who are now employed at these leading firms including Jessica Wearing-Evans, James Tian (London P & I Club)and David Williams (Charles Taylor Consulting), plus Nerys Ireland and Sophie Thomas.

School of Law Careers Fair 2012

Students talking to the representatives at the Career Fair

Jessica Wearing-Evans undertook an internship at The Standard P & I Club as a result of our 2010 Careers Fair and is now a trainee solicitor with Ince & Co LLP. Jessica is currently based in their London Office, having returned from a three months internship in their Shanghai office earlier this year.  Nerys Ireland is now a qualified Solicitor with Eversheds, based in their Cardiff Office.  Nerys recalls that Swansea prepared her well for her career: "I particularly liked the practicality of the modules which enabled me to critically evaluate my own work.   I found the friendliness, approachability of all the staff and the open door policy invaluable - something that sets Swansea apart from other providers".   Closer to home, Sophie Thomas is an associate with JCP Solicitors, a firm based in Swansea which offers a year-long placement to our LLB students.

An additional feature of this year's Fair was the preparation that students went through to ensure they maximised the opportunities.  A result of the University's Employability Academy, students received bespoke guidance and support - the results of which left a very good impression with the employers.  William Chetwood of Bentleys, Stokes and Lowless Solicitors in London commented "I was impressed by a number of the students that I spoke to. You have long had high quality students attending but the time that has been spent with them this year on careers advice really showed in some of the questions that they asked." The College’s Employability Lead, Dr Jon Howden-Evans commented “Seeing our former students in their graduate roles is testament to the calibre of student at Swansea and the dedication of colleagues in the School and University.  Planning is already underway to build on this year’s success and we look forward to welcoming both returning and new employers to meet our next cohort of students.”

The success of our students and work of our Academy accurately reflects in the School's ranking in the national tables: the most recent figures on unistats.direct.gov.uk places Swansea University School of Law with a 61% graduate employability score, ranking us at number 13 of all UK law schools; and we are by far the best in Wales (with Cardiff 53%, Bangor 45%, Aberystwyth & Glamorgan 30%).

Students invited to attend Employment Law Elective Guest Lecture

LPC, GDL & Level 3 Law Swansea University Students invited to attend Employment Law Elective Guest Lecture

An EMPLOYMENT LAW ELECTIVE Guest Lecture:

“The Immigration Rules in Commercial Legal Practice”

Morgan Cole LLP is a UK law firm committed to providing the highest quality legal services and commercially focused advice from offices in South Wales and southern England.

Swansea LPC would like to invite all LPC, GDL and Level 3 Law Swansea University students to a presentation by Glyn Lloyd, a solicitor with Morgan Cole LLP who will talk about his experiences as an employment solicitor in a commercial law practice, with particular reference to his work as a specialist in immigration law and practice.

The lecture will primarily focus on:

  • the immigration system and its legal context;
  • issues which are particularly relevant for employers;
  • the employer's obligations on recruiting and dismissing overseas workers; and
  • compliance and enforcement

Date: Monday 21st May 2012

Time: 4-5pm

Location: Advocacy Suite, School of Law

For further details, please contact :

Richard Leonard-Davies at:

r.s.leonard-davies@swansea.ac.uk

LLB Student secures place at the Olympics London 2012

LLB Student secures place at the Olympics London 2012Georgia Davies has become one of the first of two Welsh swimmers to book their place at the London 2012 Olympics after qualifying for the 100m backstroke, in a time of 60.2 and came in 2nd place behind the current world record holder in that event Gemma Spofforth, who posted a time of 60.1. Georgia Davies is an LLB student at the School of Law and has taken a year out to focus on her swimming.

This will be Georgia's first time in competing at a Olympic games.  Following qualifying for the London Olympics Georgia commented that 'I'm so excited to have qualified. I put my studies on hold this year to give myself the time to focus 100% on my training, and I'm glad to say that it has paid off.'

'I look forward to starting back with my Law studies in September. But right now, I can't wait to race at the Olympics it's a dream come true to be part of the GB team'.  

Karen Davies, GDL Programme Director congratulated Georgia Davies on her achievement and commented that 'this is a fantastic achievement by Georgia, of which the School of Law is extremely proud. The whole School will certainly be rooting for her when she enters the Olympic pool this summer.'

 

Undergraduate work placement programme goes from strength to strength

In keeping with our commitment towards ensuring the employability of our students, our work placement programme for Law undergraduates, Criminology undergraduates and Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) students has been expanded considerably for the current academic year.  Last year, the School provided 27 placements across 8 different organisations including the Swansea Crown Court, the Public Defender Service, local solicitors’ firms and barristers’ chambers, and our U.S. Criminal Justice Placement Initiative at the University of Central Oklahoma. We are pleased to announce that this year we are able to offer a total of 40 placements across 13 organisations.

In addition to our existing placement arrangements, we now have work placements at the Central Police Station in Cockett for four students with an interest in gaining firsthand experience of the workings of the police force. During the placements, which were organised with the support of Divisional Commander Chief Superintendent Mark Mathias, the students will have the opportunity (amongst other things) to visit crime scenes, spend time in the custody suite and work alongside the community safety team.

Also new for this year are two placements with the Youth Justice Board for Wales. These are hands-on research placements; the students will be given a piece of work to research and asked to complete a research report. As part of the placements, the students will have the opportunity to visit and work with some of the Youth Offending Teams in Wales.

For the first time there are also placements with the Criminal Justice Integration Team (CJIT). CJIT works with offenders that have a class A drug problem. If the students enjoy the placement, they will have the opportunity to carry on as volunteers with CJIT paying for them to attend relevant training sessions and potentially offering them paid sessional work.

What our students have said about their placements:

  • Emma Watkins (Swansea Crown Court): “I completed the criminal work experience in Swansea Crown Court. I found the week excellent, the staff were all very helpful and willing to talk at length. It was a real insight into the working of the Court and the different roles within. I found it really beneficial and would definitely recommend it to any student considering a career in criminal law”.
  • Leanne Lyne (Public Defender Service) “I took a placement with the Public Defender Service, and I cannot stress enough how good the experience was. I actually went back a few times over the summer and have made great contacts with other firms now also. Everyone in the PDS was willing to let me attend all elements included that they do every day, police stations, courts, case files etc, and it was especially exciting to see things that we studied in real life”.
  • Morwenna Isaac (Angel Chambers, Swansea): “My placement was in one word, fantastic. The first week I followed a fraud and theft trial and it was great to see the process from start to finish and to be involved in and witness how barristers work alongside the CPS. The second week was slightly more fragmented meaning that I sat in on lots of different things ranging from a 3 day sentence appeals to much shorter ones. Everything I experienced contributed to create an insightful and invaluable experience of the criminal justice system. I left the placement feeling completely inspired. All in all I cannot express how much I appreciated having the opportunity and it further confirmed my desire to pursue a career at the bar”.
  • Anthony O’Connell, (Howe & Spender Solicitors, Port Talbot): “Everybody at Howe and Spender made me feel very welcome. After a year of academic study, it was great to be exposed to so much real law. There were many highlights - going into the court cells to speak to a client, reading case files, seeing how client accounts are billed, visiting the Crown Courts and sitting in on client meetings”.

Swansea Success in Welsh National Mooting Competition 2012

A team from Swansea Law School has beaten off stiff competition to win this year’s Welsh National Mooting Competition. The competition, now in its fourth year, took place in Cardiff Law School in March. The Swansea victory was all the more impressive given that the winning team comprised of two first year law students, neither of whom had previous experience of mooting competitively. Caralyn Duignan of Lexis-Nexis, the competition’s sponsors, described this year’s competition as ‘a fierce one… and highly entertaining on a spectator level’.

Chris Dawes, Alicia Payne, Leah Ellison and David Leach (left to right)

Chris Dawes, Alicia Payne, Leah Ellison and David Leach (left to right) 

The winning Swansea team comprised of Leah Ellison and Alicia Payne, both first year single honours Law students. In the competition, they took on last year’s champions, Cardiff, in the first round, and a supremely competent team from the Open University in round two. Once the scores for rounds one and two were in, Swansea met Cardiff again in the final round. The mooting was judged by legal practitioners from local charity,Asylum Justice. The standard of mooting at this year’s competition was extremely high. The Swansea team were particularly impressive in that they competed entirely without reliance on written notes. They also had the confidence and quick-wittedness to deal effectively with judicial interjections.  

Leah and Alicia’s introduction to mooting came in October when they, along with all incoming first year Law students, were put into teams to prepare for a ‘mini-moot’. Each team competed against another, with their submissions and performance being judged by academic staff at the Law School. The exercise was designed to introduce all our students to mooting, and to give them an early taste of legal research and legal argument. All undergraduate Law students were then given the opportunity to apply for the Advocacy Training Programme run this year by the Student Law Society. The twenty successful applicants embarked on an intensive training programme run by Law Society president Chris Dawes and Swansea alumnus, Andrew Perkins. The team were trained and supported in their legal research skills by Swansea graduate and current LLM student, David Leach. The advocacy skills demonstrated by the Swansea team at this year’s Welsh National competition were a testament to the high standard of training the team had received and to the hard work put in by all involved.