27 Oct 2023

At the start of the Academy year, we asked three candidates to reflect on their expectations for the coming programme, what they hope to achieve, and how they hope the Academy will progress their pupillage journey...

24239899 - Rhiannon Hobby - Candidate 23/24

" I am so proud and happy to have been selected to join the Academy for the 2023/2024 academic year. This programme allows candidates to improve their skills in pupillage applications, create a positive mindset and helps champion diversity and inclusion at the Bar.

One of the opportunities I am most looking forward to is the interactions with chambers in my practice area of interest. Building a network with professionals and getting experience through the internships and mini-pupillages will help me gain vital legal experience and understand the profession I wish to join.

Having only attended one event I can already tell that one of the great advantages of this programme is the community it builds. The welcome event was the first time I had been in a room of aspiring barristers who were all from similar backgrounds to mine. There was an immediate collaborative and supportive environment that I know will continue and increase throughout the programme. Since then, I have been in contact with other candidates and been introduced to external opportunities. Having a support system is so vital to succeeding in the legal profession and battling imposter syndrome.

I previously thought that my aspirations were unattainable, but I know that the Academy can help me gain the skills and confidence to take those first few steps towards obtaining pupillage and building my future career."

-Rhiannon Hobby (Candidate Ambassador)

24239899 - Abbas Hussien - Candidate 23/24

"As a proud academy member of Bridging the Bar in 2023/24, I am brimming with anticipation and excitement for the exceptional opportunities that lie ahead.

Firstly, being chosen to be an intern at the Court of Appeal is not just an opportunity, alongside a competitive process; it is a golden ticket to a world of legal knowledge and experience that few get to witness first-hand. It's a place where the intricacies of the legal system come to life, where cases are dissected, and justice is upheld. As an intern, I expect to be immersed in an environment that not only fosters personal and professional growth but also allows me to make and witness meaningful contributions to the justice system.

During my internship at the Court of Appeal, I anticipate gaining invaluable insights into the inner workings of the judicial system, refining my research and writing skills, and networking with legal professionals who can guide my career. I look forward to presenting and engaging in meaningful discussions with the judges, observing the meticulous preparation of cases, and learning from the judges' wisdom.

In addition to the Court of Appeal internship, Bridging the Bar promises a year filled with mentorship, guidance, and most importantly a supportive community. This program is a bridge to a brighter future in the legal profession, and I am eager to walk that path with dedication and enthusiasm. With hard work, determination, and the experiences gained from the Court of Appeal, I am confident that the doors to a successful legal career will swing wide open."

-Abbas Hussain (Candidate Ambassador)

232498369 - Jaya Sudera Candidate 23/24

"The Bridging the Bar Academy provides numerous opportunities throughout the year that I am really looking forward to.

Firstly, I am looking forward to opportunities to network with other aspiring barristers as well as with fully fledged legal professionals at a variety of stages and seniorities in their legal careers. Through spending time with other candidates and my fellow Pod Members, I will learn more about their journeys’ to the Bar and experience of applying for pupillage. In addition, networking with barristers will provide me with a fresh insight into a career at the Bar and the inner workings of Chambers.

Alongside the networking opportunities, spending time and attending events with fellow candidates and members of Bridging the Bar creates a useful and much appreciated support network. Applying for pupillage is challenging, but going through the process alongside other applicants provides for a collegiate and supportive atmosphere that ultimately makes the experience more enjoyable and less stressful.

Most importantly, I am looking forward to the events that will help me refine my Pupillage Application technique. This is an incredibly valuable opportunity as applicants do not receive feedback as a matter of course and therefore, it is difficult to narrow down the areas of your application that require improvement. Listening to the application experiences of others and receiving valuable advice will also improve the pupillage application experience. It will be refreshing to tackle this round of pupillage applications with other aspiring barristers in the Bridging the Bar community.

Furthermore, I am excited to further developing my advocacy skills by partaking in advocacy training held by Bibi Badejo. This will ensure that I am better prepared for pupillage interviews that include advocacy exercises.

Bridging the Bar has an abundance of opportunities for candidates throughout the year, that will allow for the growth and advancement of our advocacy skills, pupillage application technique and confidence as budding legal professionals. The path to the Bar is unique and challenging for everyone and I am extremely grateful for the encouragement and support towards the commencement of our career at the Bar."

-Jaya Sudera (Candidate Ambassador)

You can keep up with our candidates here: Rhiannon; Abbas; Jaya.

If you're interested in finding out more about candidate's Academy experiences, you can follow our Linkedin, Instagram, and Twitter for updates.