For prospective students, the title of this blog post may mean very little. But to current students, a lot. All shall be explained!
As I was walking through the Students’ Union last week I came across this adorable chalk board, and this was one side of it…
If you look half way down on the left you’ll see the name “Steve Evans”, who is one of the lecturers in the Law School. It seems daunting having to meet so many new people in terms of students, but it is often forgotten that lecturers play a big part in shaping your university experience too. And they can definitely form some of your favourite memories of university. Hence, I wanted to share with you a little about the lecturer side of university!
Lectures and tutorials
You’ll be in uni pretty much every day. Lecturers are the people that you drag yourself out of bed for in order to listen to their at 9am lecture. Or sometimes, even worse, 5pm! You spend a large portion of your time at university listening to lecturers teaching you, and they are the ones who inspire – they bring the law to life. And the ones at Leicester are awesome.
It’s so important that you familiarise yourself with the lecturers so that when you’re in tutorials (groups of 8 students where you prepare questions and discuss them with a lecturer – two per week), you’re not afraid to ask questions. They are an invaluable resource and when you can’t find the answer anywhere else, they’ll always help you out.
The frisbee of death
Love it or hate it, it’s definitely a story to tell. Admissions tutor and land law lecturer Martin George brought to us the dreaded frisbee of death. Sounds terrifying, doesn’t it? Well, it is…
In second year we were faced with this curious red frisbee… only to find out that if we caught it, or if it landed near us, we had to answer a question in front of EVERYONE in the lecture theatre. We would strategically seat ourselves in a place where we would a) be less likely to have the frisbee land near us, or b) be able to dive out of the way into the aisle (and trust me I thought about it).
It’s things like this that make your degree that bit more interesting. And instead of a room filled with 300 odd students sitting listening to a lecture, it felt like one big tutorial with everyone laughing and discussing the law. A great environment to learn in.
Every law student at Leicester is assigned a personal tutor who will stay with you for the entirety of your degree. Your personal tutor is a lecturer assigned to you to help with any pastoral support issues, and is someone that you can always go to with any problems that you have. You have to meet with them once a term, but you can pop in and see them whenever. I had Dr Yassin Brunger as my personal tutor as I entered my first year and she made me feel so welcome and supported in my first week. I know that I can go to her with any issues I need to talk out without any judgement, and for any academic stuff she can point me in the right direction.
Make sure you tell them any important stuff, and do share things with them as lecturers can give you some fantastic advice.
Law Ball – We are a very sociable law school!
Every year quite a few lecturers also attend the Law Society’s annual Law Ball. We also present awards to the best lecturers, who are voted for by the students in order to show our appreciation. We all talk and dance, and have a wonderful evening. At Leicester Law School the lecturers are just as much as a part of your life as the students are, so make sure you say hello! (I also wish I could insert a video of one of our lecturers, who shall not be named, having a dance-off from this year’s Law Ball. But… 1. it would be highly embarrassing, and 2. it’ll give you all the more reason to come to Leicester, or look forward to attending the Law Ball so you can see it for yourself!)
Assistance with projects
Not only do the lecturers at Leicester provide us with knowledge, and entertainment, but they also help out so much with our extracurricular projects. Dr Melissa Bone is the Law Society Liaison Officer and I keep her in the loop about everything the Law Society (LULS) gets up to. She gives me advice and helps in any way that she can to ensure the smooth-running of our events.
Last year I was the Editor-in-Chief of the Law Society’s Law Review, and Melissa, along with Dr Stelios Andreadakis, were our Academic Advisors. They helped to choose the best articles, and the writers awarded with prizes with firms like work experience or mock interviews, and Melissa and Stelios were fully on board with publicising our launch event.
Then there’s Francois du Bois, the Head of the Law School. He has always been so supportive with all of LULS’ projects and is never afraid to give constructive criticism to make sure we are achieving the highest standards in what we do. He attends as many events as possible, for example he gave a wonderful speech at the Law Review launch, and allowed us funding in order to be able to hold the event.
You’ve then got Steve Evans who helps tonnes with the Law Society’s sub-committee the Pro Bono group, and Dr Tracey Elliott who does mountains for LULS Moots (including helping to secure judges and many other crucial tasks.)
If I had to list all of the incredible academics at the Law School that aid us with our extracurricular projects, I really would be here all day. These types of events and projects help us to build our CVs through developing new skills and having new experiences. And they would not be anywhere near as successful, or sometimes even possible at all, without the support and guidance of the Law School’s dedicated academics.
It’s a really strange thing when you come into first year since you’re used to teachers, and with lecturers it’s a totally different dynamic, because you’re in a big lecture theatre of hundreds of students and the teaching style is so different. So when you see favourite lecturer who has made you so intrigued by a topic – made it funny and something you want to read about, you’re filled with a lot of admiration, to be brutally honest.
One embarrassing story was from my first Law Ball where our contract law lecturer, Oliver Nunn, went on stage to accept an award and I got so excited and was cheering so loudly that everyone stared at me… and then cheered just as thunderously. This year one of my friends Deborah, who has now graduated, as well as the other Law Society girls on our table were cheering incessantly when Steve Evans went to collect his award. She is going to kill me for this but, quote, “we have to let Steve know we love him!” So it’s no surprise that Steve actually made it as one of the top six lecturers shortlisted for the national award Law Lecturer of the Year.
Our lecturers’ passion for their subjects, and commitment for wanting us to succeed makes a really positive difference to your time at university – meaning you have a lot of admiration and respect for the teaching staff, as well as amazing memories of them.
Our lecturers are not just an invaluable resource for the knowledge that they impart, or for their wisdom and advice, or jokes and dancing, but generally for making the law school a lovely place to be.
Hence, they definitely can be one of your favourite and most memorable things about university.
As always, drop me a comment!
I hope you’re super excited to be a part of the Leicester Law School family!