Friday, 15 March 2013

The Last Three Months


My darling beloved readers,

Hello and how are you?

I realise that I have disappeared from here for the past three months but all for a good reason. I have missed writing these blogs so much. Writing this and sharing my journey with you always gives me immense pleasure. So you may be wondering where on earth have I been and what have I been doing with myself? So let me tell you. When exams were over I truly believed that I would fail and have to retake again but fortunately the stars were shining down on me and I passed J (*woooo hooooo) So when I found out about passing I realised that now was the time to buckle down and begin hunting for a real job in the big outside world and let me tell you now as you already probably know that is no easy feat. Finding a job, applying and then securing a job is one of the toughest things ever. Some people don’t want you because you are too young and inexperienced and other people don’t want you because you are over qualified with your fabulous degree. Most likely those that do want you just want free labour out of you but not all of us can do this. How is one meant to pay bills, rent, food, travel etc working for free? On the other hand if one lands a really good work experience/internship the benefits are immense.

After graduation I was approached by the Graduate Internship Programme. This consisted of five training days and then was secured by a month of internship with an organisation in your chosen field. At the time of applying for this I had also come across another advert which was more local to me but for a period of three months within a law field. Both were voluntary positions. No other applications I had made for paid work had been successful and this was mainly down to me being lacking in experience, so with no other alternative options I began looking at voluntary work. Even applying for retail positions I would be rejected due to my degree. So coming back to my two options I decided to apply for the three month internship and see where fate would take me. Luckily the law firm I applied to offered me an interview the day after the Graduate Internship started so to keep my options I went to GIP and in all honesty I was not very impressed with some of the things I was hearing and on top of that they could not even confirm with me that I would be placed within a law field. I thought it would be best to wait and see what would happen at the interview with the law firm.

The next day I went to the interview which was relatively relaxed. It is a small and young firm. After a ten-fifteen minute chat I was given a tour of the building and went on my merry way being informed that they would get in touch with me to inform me whether or not I had been successful. Surely enough within two days I was contacted and told that I start on Monday at ten. I faced a dilemma whether or not to go for the GIP which was a shorter period of internship or take a risk and give up three months to work for free within a real law firm that was conveniently local. After a great debate I decided to take the plunge and commit to the three months.

It has now been more than three months and it has been such an experience nothing I have ever done can come to this. I have loved every single minute of it! There have been plenty of times where there has been office drama but hey no matter where you go you will always face such nonsense. People will gossip and complain and twist things to make other people look bad or to make themselves look better. People will be masked in a sheep’s clothing whilst inside they are really a wolf. But as you know my darlings that is life and I have experienced a lot of this type of nonsense. I share my journey with you so that I can inspire and advise.

Despite the silly gossiping/moany people it really has been wonderful. At this firm I have learnt so much. I have been trained right from scratch and also thrown into the deep end but learnt to swim and survive quickly and as you all know I am a survivor. Now in my fourth month I have taken on my own cases and have also be given a full time working contract. There is a lot to learn but the wonderful thing about is that everything you learn you put into practise  But this is not as easy as you think. Procedures take ages, gathering evidence and case files and dossiers take ages. Furthermore, having clients constantly on your back wanting an update all the time is hard work more so when you have them lying to you about what is happening on their side.

So you’re probably wondering where it is I've landed this fabulous internship, well, the firm is called Nieko Solicitors, and yours truly (Me – that is) is learning all about prison law. Fun stuff! It is probably more difficult doing this than having done the LLB. Learning whilst on the job is tough. Mistakes will be made, and the work will take long because the majority of time you are lost in a world of paperwork and procedure. The first three months were ok, it was easy learning and straight forward but as time goes on and we enter the next phase of work which includes investigations, written representations and a tonne of procedure it becomes more and more confusing. But like I always say nothing is ever easy and hopefully in time the procedures will become clearer. Working in a close knit environment is not easy with some people only out for themselves. This makes learning a difficult task indeed. Prison law is not exactly what I had in mind when I graduated. I had applied to many teaching assistant positions to embark on a teaching career but all to no avail. Teaching and mentoring whilst I was a Student Ambassador was extremely rewarding. This particular field I have now found myself in is not that rewarding. The cases, the clients are exactly what you’d imagine them to be. It is everything you read and hear on the news. It is dark, threatening, dismal, horrific and one must have a skin made out of rubber to withstand all the information one receives.

The timescale to learn is short, you must be quick thinking and even quicker to put things into action. I am surrounded by fellow colleagues who have done their LPC and completed the Bar and to be honest compared to them I just feel dumb and inadequate to do the job. Now how many times have you heard that one before? Learning procedure is not something they teach you on your degree it is something you have to research and learn all by yourself. Like everything else it is not easy but anything that is difficult requires that extra bit of effort.

There are no coffee making moments here, there are of course routine photocopying, faxing etc but that is a minuscule part of the job. Undertaking fee earning work has great benefits, I have my own clients and I am embarking on specialising within specific areas of prison law. For me this has been a once in a lifetime opportunity. I can say confidently that no other work experience has given me such a vast amount of knowledge, such responsibility in such a short amount of time.

Best of luck everyone xxx

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Graduation


Hello my beloved readers!

It has been a while since graduation has passed and I’ve just been basking in that wonderful knowledge and feeling of finally becoming a graduate. In my hearts of hearts I really did not think I would make it but hard work and perseverance has seen me through it. Without the support of close loved one and the support and belief of my tutors I could not have done it. There are so many people to thank for believing in me and helping me with this process. 

I’ve shared my journey with you to show you that even if you are alone like I have been, to have faced so many hurdles at every turn and been kicked to the streets, sheer hard work and determination got me through. The fears were a plenty, tears even more, pillows soaked with tears and blood flowing, heart aching always thinking I could never make it but finally my time came and when I walked into that Chapel, when I heard those speeches most of all when they called “Graduants” and we rose to take our applause nothing can compare to the uproar which shattered through that hall. It reverberated off the walls, ricocheted from all the corners of our uni and rebounded back into our hearts. Nothing can compare to that uplifting moment. It is for no one but yourself, in a group we may stand but it is so unique to each and every individual.


Although my journey has been waded through alone my crowning moment in glory I am more than happy to share with my beloved readers. This is for me, for you, for us. To show you that despite the countless moments of doubt and desperate urge to drop out and escape the wretched routine when you put your mind to it, “you can use your head to do what your heart wants”.

Keep The Hope Alive

Much Love Naz

xx

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Welcome and Some Advice

My beloved readers...
Sometimes it is very difficult to do something you really don’t want to do for example at the beginning of my placement during the first few weeks I really did not like it, i wanted so much to change my modules and do something else. However, deep inside I knew that this was a once in a life time opportunity and that after I would reap the benefits and this knowledge alone was enough to make me determined to see it through. With the right guidance you will get through these tough and murky times. Doing something that is difficult and you do not enjoy is enough reason to give up on it but one must not forget its benefit and so coining a phrase from a movie always “do the right thing”.
Some of you will be freshers and so a very hearty welcome to you and others who continue their journey welcome back. The load you will carry in the next few months will be hefty indeed and you need to put the hours in, remember you can’t sow maize and expect to reap wheat. The hours need to be put in and yes that does include countless sleepless nights and millions of re-drafting of numerous essays but hard work pays off. Believe in honesty and hard work, determination and the rewards will come naturally.

Friday, 28 September 2012

More CVs and Cover Letters


My dearest readers, it has been a very long while since the last blog that is mainly because not much has been happening in the world of me. The job applications are a plenty and can’t complain about anything else.

In the next month I shall finally be graduating from university. It has been an incredible journey but a new one is fast starting up. For those of you beginning the same journey as me do not be disheartened I have had many people telling me of their journey taking up to a year. A lot of the times it boils down to one thing: lack of experience. So get as much in as possible. Try a few days or even a few hours a week of voluntary work. Yes, I know most times this can be time and money consuming but in the long run it will help with not only experience but also confidence boosting and enhance your skills.

In my applications one of the many problems I have come across is the way I write my cover letters and my CV, most that just being wordy without actually saying anything useful and productive. My tip: avoid useless phrases such great communication/interpersonal skills without giving examples.

Also for you fellow Greenwich students out there make sure you make full use of all the on line facilities that Moodle/Get Job Shop have to offer because there is ample of fantastic tips and examples of how to build your CV from scratch and how to compile cover letters and personal statements. It is all about the research that you put not only into the company you are applying to but also into yourself and your own skills and experience.

Also, do not underestimate yourself, your abilities or most importantly your potential. It takes a lot to get through university so just apply everything you’ve learnt in the last three or four years and put it to use on your CV/Cover letter. You’ve learnt how to write essays think of it as writing a mini essay on yourself.

Best of luck

xx

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

CVs and Cover letters

Hi everyone!

How are your summer holidays going?

Thought I would give a quick update on my situation which at the moment I am pulling my hair out at the moment. I think one of the most dreadful things one has to do are job applications and filling in nonsense skills sections over and over again. I see no point in having to write the same thing out three different times in three separate places. Once being a quick summary in your cover letter, of course in your CV and then in some random section asking for your key skills because oh wait the reader can’t be bothered to read your CV/cover letter. Talk about annoying.

Too much reliance are placed on computers instead of the good old days where applications were solely done via post nowadays you have to write the same thing a million times over.  It is more annoying, more frustrating than writing an essay.

Aside from the annoying aspects of writing a CV/cover letter and all things in between the university is offering help and guidance on how to job hunt and apply for jobs consistently. Those of you who want to make full use of this course which also has the benefit of being completely on line thus saving you the trip all the way to Greenwich can find it on the portal and it is called “GET Summer Online Training Programme”. There are videos and book summaries and ideas and tips on sending daily applications.

Best of luck guys xx

Monday, 23 July 2012

Update on Not Much


Still a few days have passed from when I got my results... that feeling that yes finally I’ve done still hasn’t left me.

Those endless days and nights convincing myself that I couldn’t do it, giving up not having the energy to continue believing. For you my readers I kept up the facade maintained the encouragement and the strong words but deep inside all the strength had completely ebbed away. The lack of hope had broken my heart. The betrayal from all around had taken its toll. In January it was my intention to just leave completely without looking back and as you probably know my tutors convinced me to just stay for a few weeks to see how I feel after a few weeks, I could not escape the coursework’s nor the need to revise. Somehow the consistency, the strength of my beautiful friends and my wonderful tutors, all my loved ones kept me up.

My beating heart had lost all hope. I gave you a glimpse into me, shared with you the raw emotions and the brutal history and truth from which I came. Sure it is not that bad and it could be worse but this is my story to tell, my journey that I am sharing with you.

The days now pass by with as you guessed, job hunting, not much else to say on that front. Quite boring and tedious but still fun and exciting too knowing that soon I shall be out in the real world with a full time job.
On the baking front my silly camera has now died L It fell so horribly on to the floor and the zoomy thingy is stuck and won’t retract back. So now I am on a mission to find a new and better camera, suggestions are very welcome J

To those of you who may not have done so well and are still on your journey at uni I say keep your hearts firm and your heads in the books. Enjoy this moment for soon it shall be over...

Monday, 9 July 2012

Results Letter

The letter...

Hello my beautiful readers!!

I have been waiting for this day ever since my last exam finished. You can guess what I am talking about... Results!!

To be completely honest with you I actually found out my results on the 4th July, a day I will never ever forget. A marked day in my calendar. During those many dark moments I truly believed it could never happen, that for me this moment would never come but you are now reading the blog of not just a law student but of a law graduate!! :-D

After all that struggle, all those endless nights, those caffeine hydrated days, the non existence of sleep and lack of food the hard work has been wonderfully paid off and I could not be more happier. Your degree when you come to finish it will be yours completely and no one will be able to take that away from you, nothing can diminish just how valuable that is.

After all the obstacles, the constant flow of people letting me down, after the sordid past, the betrayal, patience and perseverance and sheer determination the tears finally paid off.

One day a day shall come where the days of crying over your notes and your text books will finally come to an end and the only tears you will be shedding then are tears of joy. For me this will always be a momentous occasion, nothing will take that away.


It’s a part of luck, loss and labour
Add a part of devotion, hope and talent
All put together is the secret of success...

Sitting on a street corner gossiping 
it’s a time of happy days my friend
desiring for success at an adolescent 
WE FAILED MISERABLY 
we took the wrong route to find the right route
MISTAKES ARE THE SECRET OF SUCCESS
we ran away to discover this world
i realised to toil for her (him)
LOVE IS THE SECRET OF SUCCESS...
PAIN IS THE SECRET OF SUCCESS

We fight, toil hard, lose but I’m sure
Secret to success, shortcut to success
Its honesty... its honesty only

- Tamil Movie "Boys" –
Music AR Rahman
Lyrics by Vaali and Blaaze