Matt Boddington (LLB 2007)

As somebody whose school days are a faded memory, I began the part time LLB course with a degree of uncertainty, obsolete studying skills and, if I am honest, a bit of a Matt Boddingtonlack of discipline.

I did not anticipate that the course would provide not just legal knowledge, but a whole set of tools with which to better myself and improve my career prospects.

The early course lectures start by addressing basic study skills, and pretty soon you find your feet. Once up and running you find that you have pet subjects (perhaps not the ones you might have guessed you would enjoy) and favourite tutors who just seem to explain things in a way that makes the penny drop. Hopefully something extra-curricular will grab you too – for me it was mooting which satisfied my argumentative streak!

You will definitely make friends across diverse ages and backgrounds, each of them united with you by the bonds of finally decoding that cryptic text book passage together, or reassuring each other over that looming essay deadline.

I won’t pretend the course was not tough. I studied the course whilst working full-time, bringing up our own young family and also being a foster carer. There are times when you have to muster every ounce of self-motivation to remain mentally focussed after a hard day’s work.

But like all things in life that demand this level of personal investment, the rewards that you reap and the confidence you gain from your achievement are incomparable. You will emerge with a sound knowledge of the law across your subjects, an analytical approach and (in my case) better studying, organisational and time management skills.

Personally speaking, the course has been an important step on a career path in the law which has taken me into employment and tax tribunals as an advocate, and ultimately to starting a successful firm which now employs 10 staff.