A University of Nottingham, School of Law internship can be life-changing — here’s why
Promoted by University of Nottingham

A University of Nottingham, School of Law internship can be life-changing — here’s why

How does a University of Nottingham, School of Law education stand out? For Junelle Ayettey, it was the invaluable experience she gained at the University of Nottingham Commercial Law Centre (UNCLC).

“I was able to be creative and analytical in writing blogs on current legal developments,” the former UNCLC Research Intern shares. “This aided my commercial awareness and taught me how to bring my opinion into discussions.”

Home to leading experts on commercial law, UNCLC drives reforms and developments — within the national and international stages — in this specialised field. These include informing court judgments, provoking debate, and influencing socio-legal discussion. Beyond this, the centre provides evidence for politicians and select committees.

UNCLC members include recognised leaders in their fields who contribute to the centre’s vision for excellence in commercial law through a varied range of research, doctrinal studies, and interdisciplinary partnerships. Their publications and collaborations include work with other leading academic institutions, governments, intergovernmental organisations, and standard-setting bodies.

Little wonder why the 2021 Research Excellence Framework reaffirms the University of Nottingham as among the best universities in the UK for the strength of its research.

Source: A University of Nottingham, School of Law

For School of Law students, UNCLC represents a pool of opportunities. The World Bank Group (WBG) Internship, for example, is the chance for one LLM student to intern with the bank’s insolvency and debt resolution team. It includes a stipend — generously funded by INSOL International — which covers travel expenses to and from Washington, DC and living expenses.

As an intern, the student will work under the direct supervision of a member of the team. They will perform analytical research, prepare project documentation in various areas of law, review relevant laws, and may even have the opportunity to participate in a “mission” to travel to an overseas country if the WBG’s policy allows it at the time of the internship.

The chance to become an intern or research assistant with UNCLC is equally fulfilling. Hear it from Alice Milton, a former UNCLC research assistant: “Coming from a non-law background was not a hindrance and I was able to engage with various areas of the law. These included insolvency law, data protection and the international sale of goods.”

Milton enjoys the research work with Professor Irit Mevorach, Dr. Reza Beheshti and Dr. Oliver Butler, who were all “extremely helpful and encouraging.” “The tasks were very varied, including editing papers and collecting data,” she shares. “I have enjoyed the amount of responsibility I was given and the ability to engage with current updates to the law. The work has helped me discover new interests and learn more about legal research.”

Source: A University of Nottingham, School of Law

Likewise, Jakub Mikulski had an enjoyable experience working as a research assistant at UNCLC as an undergraduate student. “I was able to use these skills to assist with research on a range of commercial law topics, including dispute resolution clauses in international treaties, parent company liability and cross-border insolvency,” says Mikulski. “I also had the chance to present a talk on a topic I was researching for my final year dissertation.”

Mikulski worked with Professor Mevorach and Dr. Klara Polackova Van der Ploeg, who are respected for their research on various areas of law, such as cross-border insolvency, international law, and international dispute settlement.

The best part? “All of the staff I interacted with at the UNCLC were very approachable and keen to help me with any issues I encountered. This made it the perfect environment to develop my interest in legal research and commercial law,” says Mikulski.

Apart from placements, students also have the chance to attend talks by guest speakers from practice, industry, government and international organisations. They are frequently invited to UNCLC’s commercial law programmes and courses, giving students and staff the opportunity to ask questions to leaders in their fields.

Previous speakers have included Mark Smith and Matt Rigg, Deputy Directors at the UK Government BEIS (Department of Business, Energy, Innovation and Skills) legal advisers and Jonathan Orde, Ministry of Justice Legal Advisers.

As a UNCLC research assistant, Milton attended several of the centre’s events on topics such as free speech in copyright law and produced blogs on these events with the help of Dr. Sanam Saidova. Following the end of her time at UNCLC, she continued to help Dr. Butler with his research on data protection with public bodies.

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