07 May 2024

24239899 - Abbas Hussien - Candidate 23/24

My journey

Embarking on a career in law, especially as a barrister, is a daunting yet exhilarating journey. One key milestone on this path is securing pupillage, a crucial stepping stone to practicing at the Bar. In my pursuit of this goal, I stumbled upon a gem that not only refined my skills but also opened doors to invaluable experiences— Bridging the Bar Academy.

My journey with Bridging the Bar has been full of guidance, excitement, and memories that I will forever cherish. I was put onto an internship that immersed me into the heart of the legal system—the Court of Appeal. Initially, I harboured reservations about interacting with judges, fearing that my questions or interactions might be deemed silly or unwise, and I may not fit in because of my background. However, what unfolded was a revelation that would shape my perspective on the legal profession.

The judges I encountered were not distant, stern figures on the bench. Instead, they proved to be down-to-earth mentors, eager to engage with aspiring barristers like me. They welcomed questions about our journeys, offering insights and guidance within the bounds of their roles. This experience shattered the illusion of an impenetrable legal hierarchy and reinforced the notion that the legal community values the growth and development of its future members.

One of the highlights of my time with Bridging the Bar was the advocacy training provided by One Essex Court. This comprehensive training equipped me with the skills and confidence necessary for the rigorous interview stages of pupillage applications. As I navigated through three interviews this pupillage cycle, I realised that the seemingly simple or unwise questions I had posed during my time at the Court of Appeal were, in fact, part of a learning process that had prepared me well for real-world scenarios.

Successfully applying the advocacy skills acquired through the training, I secured interviews at prestigious chambers. This triumph not only bolstered my confidence but also highlighted the effectiveness of the academy's preparation in a competitive field. It became evident that Bridging the Bar was not just a program; it was a catalyst for personal and professional growth.

As I eagerly anticipate a mini pupillage at Fountain Court this summer, I reflect on the transformative impact of the Bridging the Bar Academy on my journey. Regardless of whether I secure a pupillage immediately, my commitment to learning and growing in the legal profession remains unwavering. The academy has instilled in me the understanding that chambers seek potential, not the finished product, and that the journey to the bar is an ongoing process of evolution.

Application Process

For aspiring barristers contemplating whether to apply to the Bridging the Bar Academy, my advice is simple: apply today, do not delay. The academy is not just a program; it is a gateway to a world of opportunities and growth. It has the potential to increase your chances of securing a pupillage by two or threefold, but its true value lies in the transformative experience it offers.

The application process for Bridging the Bar Academy is designed to be straightforward and user-friendly, much like any other application. While your written skills are assessed, an extensive writing piece is not what is expected. Instead, you may be prompted to argue or provide your opinion on a specific point within a 200 to 300-word range, it could be a topic on diversity and inclusion, a contemporary issue, or anything else that is trending. Following this, there are live video sessions where you're presented with a proposition and given a minute to prepare. During the video, you articulate your submission on the proposition. Again, extensive research on legal matters isn't required; rather, your ability to express concise and coherent viewpoints is evaluated. Feedback received upon acceptance into the academy is invaluable, pinpointing areas for improvement and guiding you on the path to becoming a more effective advocate and speaker.

Top Tips for Successful Candidates

Top tips for those considering applying to the academy include active participation and engagement. The more you invest in the program, the more you stand to gain. Chambers are not merely seeking individuals with a set skill set; they are looking for potential, and Bridging the Bar is designed to help you identify and display that potential effectively on your pupillage applications.

In conclusion, Bridging the Bar Academy has been a game-changer in my pursuit of a career at the Bar. It has demystified the legal profession, provided me with invaluable skills, and connected me with mentors who have guided me on my journey. As I eagerly look forward to the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead, I am grateful for the transformative experience and the unwavering support I have received from this remarkable program. Apply today, embrace the journey, and watch as your potential unfolds before you.

If you're interested in applying you can access our application form here or for more testimonials from our candidates, you can follow our Twitter, Instagram, and Linkedin.