Monthly Archives: May 2014

Kent alumna is Kent Law Society Junior Lawyer of the Year

Kent alumna Alexandra Gordon has been named Kent Law Society Junior Lawyer of the Year in the inaugural Kent Law Society Awards. Alexandra, who graduated from Kent Law School in 2007 with a degree in Law, is a solicitor with Furley Page’s Private Client Team in Canterbury. The award seeks to acknowledge lawyers whose professional activities (paid or unpaid) over the past 12 month have been worthy of recognition.

While a student at Kent, Alexandra undertook work at the Kent Law Clinic which counted towards her Law degree. Since qualifying, Alexandra has worked as a volunteer lawyer for the Clinic, assisting members of the public at evening advice sessions for more than three years. Alexandra also acts as a mentor for Kent Law students.

Alexandra said: ‘Without the guidance and support of the Kent Law School, particularly from all at the Kent Law Clinic, I would not have been given the opportunity to start such a successful career, and so I feel they have played a great part in my achieving this award.’

Clinic Director Professor John Fitzpatrick had no hesitation in recommending Alexandra to the Kent Law Society for the award: ‘I commend her specifically for the outstanding pro bono contribution that she has made over the past year at our outreach Advice Session in Whitstable on Monday evenings, where she has advised countless members of the public on wills, lasting powers of attorney, probate and probate disputes.

‘The in-house solicitors in the Clinic do not work in these fields and Alex has made it possible for us to provide this valuable, much needed service for those with no prospect of paying for legal advice. She makes a real difference to these people at what is almost invariably a difficult and testing time for them.’

Alumnus success at the Kent Teacher of the Year Awards

Adam Purland, who graduated from Kent in 2009 with a degree in Mathematics and has taught at Hartsdown Academy in Margate for the past four and a half years, has been named as district champion in the Top Maths Teacher category at the Kent Teacher of the Year Awards. The Awards, organised by the KM Charity Team in partnership with the KM Group, celebrate excellence and achievements in schools.

Adam was nominated by a Year 11 student, who was able to improve his grade from F to B in just 6 months thanks to his after school learning sessions with Adam.
Adam said: “Being nominated was a complete surprise. The most important thing for me is to build strong relationships with students so that they really enjoy Maths, which is a great subject. The reason we all teach is to make a positive difference and it is really gratifying when you see students reach their potential, even if it takes a lot of perseverance.”

Executive head teacher of Hartsdown Academy, Andy Somers, said: “Adam’s reward is richly deserved. He is a dedicated and enthusiastic teacher and the Hartsdown family are very proud of his achievement.”

Kent Law Campaign Student Group named ‘Volunteering Society of the Year’

Committee members of the Kent Law Campaign Student Group (KLCSG) are celebrating after being named ‘Volunteering Society of the Year’ at the Kent Union Awards.

Head of Kent Law School Professor Didi Herman said: ‘We are very proud of all the committee members who have worked extremely hard this year. Inclusive of the University’s matched funding, the group has raised £16,921 for the Kent Law Campaign as well as a huge amount of awareness across campus. Congratulations to them as well to all the staff colleagues who have been working closely with them, particularly Kent Campaigns Manager, Anna Pollard.’

KLCSG Chair Emily Smith was also shortlisted for ‘Campaigner of the Year’ and ‘Volunteer of the Year’ and KLCSG’s inaugural 5km ‘Race for Justice’, a charity Fun Run held in November in which more than 100 runners helped raise £4,373, was shortlisted for ‘Fundraising Event of the Year’.

The Kent Union Awards celebrate the achievements of its students for the outstanding work they undertake whilst members of Kent Union clubs and societies. Nominated by fellow students and staff, the awards recognise individuals as well as celebrating achievements by clubs and societies.

Working together with the Young Alumni Fundraising Group, KLCSGis hoping to raise £50,000 in support of the Kent Law Campaign, a £5million fundraising project to build a new home for both the Kent Law Clinic and Kent Law School’s mooting programme. To date, the two groups have raised more than £42,000 through activities such as charity balls, season’s greetings cards, quiz nights and sponsored events.

Follow the KLCSG blog  to find out about current fundraising initiatives or keep up to speed with all the events that are happening on the Law Campaign’s Facebook page. You can also find out more about the work of the committee, the Kent Law Campaign and why the group is so dedicated to raising money by watching the KLCSG video.

BSIS alumna publishes first article

Aynur Bashirova, an alumna from the Brussels School of International Studies who graduated in November 2011 with a Master of Laws in International Law with International Relations, has had her first article published by the Royal Higher Institute for Defence.

Aynur is currently studying for a PhD at the ULB in Belgium, and is conducting research on Azerbaijan’s relations with Armenia and Georgia and its impact on Azerbaijan’s internal political reality.

Kent Law Campaign Team take part in the London Legal Walk

On Monday 19th May 2014, a team of 17 students, alumni, staff and friends of the University took part in the 10th London Legal Walk to raise money for the Kent Law Campaign and the London Legal Support Trust. This was a 10km walk around central London which started and finished at the Royal Courts of Justice and was attended by senior members of the legal profession, including the Lord Chief Justice, the President of the Supreme Court, the Master of the Rolls, leaders of the Bar Council, the Law Society and CILEx, as well as the Attorney General. Money raised through this event will support free legal advice charities in London and the South East.

The team has raised over £800 to date and you can still support them online.

Kent Super Heroes raise over £1,900 for the Kent Law Campaign

On Sunday 18th May, a team of six Super Heroes (also known as staff, students and alumni of the University of Kent) joined over 1,000 runners at the Super Hero Run in Regent’s Park, London to raise money for the Kent Law Campaign.

Anna Pollard, Simone Kraemer, Felicity Clifford and Claire Battersby (all from the University’s Development Office), Natalie Salunke (Kent alumna and Chair of the Young Alumni Group) and Angela Watson (a member of University of Kent staff and a current part-time law student at our Medway campus) dressed as their favourite Super Heroes to take part in this unusual event.

Of the challenge, Felicity said: “I really enjoyed taking part in this special event and having the opportunity to dress up! The Kent Law Campaign is a very important project which will provide huge benefits to our students and local community once our vision becomes a reality. The Kent Law Clinic is a real asset to society and it gives students first hand experiences of what law is like in reality. I feel honoured to be able to play a part in its future.”

The team has currently raised over £1,900 through this challenge however if you wish to contribute to their fund their online giving page is still live.

We would like to thank the team for their support!

Law student wins award

Kent law student Charles Wood has been awarded The Norman Cooper Advocacy Prize in recognition of his advocacy skills.

Charles, a final year LLB Law student at Kent Law School, was chosen for the award following his selection as the best advocate in the annual internal mooting competition for Medway based students held earlier this year.

Mooting involves arguing points of law in a simulated courtroom setting using hypothetical facts often based on a factual scenario that is a variant on a leading case. The Law School offers an extra-curricular module in mooting which is open to all second and third year students.

Charles said: ‘I feel immensely privileged to receive such a prestigious award. Mooting at Kent Law School is enjoyable and challenging, so to get such recognition for advocacy as an extra-curricular activity is great! Everyone who took part in the competition worked incredibly hard and there were some great advocates. I would recommend participation in such events as the skills gained are invaluable for anyone wanting to pursue a career in law. The judges’ comments are informative for improving and extra research in any given area of law can only aid you as a student.’

Professor Nicholas Grief, Sub-Dean for Medway, said: ‘Once again, the judges were very impressed with the high standard of mooting and choosing the winner was no easy task. I’d like to say a huge thank you to Joe Pearson (Lecturer in Law) for running the competition again and to our judges for giving their time.’

There will be a formal presentation of the prize to Charles at a reception following the Medway graduation ceremony in Rochester Cathedral on 8 July.

The Norman Cooper Advocacy Prize was established at Kent Law School in 2011 through the generosity of Professor Jeremy Cooper, and in association with Kent Law Society, in memory of Norman Cooper, former President of Kent Law Society and a former County Prosecuting Solicitor, who died in 2011 at the age of 91.

Previous winners of the award have included: Danielle Johnson (2013); Claire Stevenson (2012); and Amanda Richter (2011).

The Kent Law Campaign Student Group extends a big “Thank you” to our donors

On Thursday 27th February 2014 the Kent Law Campaign Student Group took part in the global “Student Engagement and Philanthropy Day” which was organised by CASE ASAP and designed to encourage students around the world to get involved with philanthropy at their institutions and to start understanding its importance.

The University of Kent was one of only six universities in the UK to take part and the Kent Law Campaign Student Group took up the challenge with enthusiasm. Having decided that they wanted to thank alumni and friends who have donated to the Kent Law Campaign, they came up with “Quackers About Fundraising”, a day where hundreds of yellow ducks were signed with thank you messages to our donors.

During the day a short video was filmed where our students expressed their thanks to those who have supported this important project and we are delighted to share this with you.

Photographs from the “Quackers About Fundraising Day” are available online.

First 500 dinner held in London

The 2014 ‘First 500 Dinner’ took place on Thursday 15th May at the National Liberal Club in London.

There were, in fact, not 500 of them; the actual number was closer to 400. However, there was a play at the Marlowe Theatre that October called ‘The First 500’ and the name stuck. They were the first residents of Eliot College, with half moving over to the newly-built Rutherford College in 1966, so that the year groups were spread out evenly across the two colleges.

The group, comprising Kent’s first undergraduates from 1965, meet every year in London. Hosted by Group Captain John Platt (Rutherford 1965, Economics), around 30 members of the original cohort come together to reminisce, to share their memories of Kent and to catch up on the latest news from the University.

We were delighted to be able to share the latest news from the University, and to show them a film which had been made during the preceding year, featuring interviews with them about their own memories, interspersed with archive footage from the newly-built campus.

The First 500 were our pioneers, and are justifiably proud of their long association with the University. We are hugely grateful for their support over the past 50 years, and look forward to giving them a central role in the 50th anniversary celebrations.

Kent Super Heroes to raise money for the Kent Law Campaign

On Sunday 18th May, a team of six Super Heroes (also known as staff, students and alumni of the University of Kent) will be joining over 1,000 runners at the Super Hero Run in Regent’s Park, London to raise money for the Kent Law Campaign.

Anna Pollard, Simone Kraemer, Felicity Clifford and Claire Battersby (all from the University’s Development Office), Natalie Salunke (Kent alumna and Chair of the Young Alumni Group) and Angela Watson (a member of University of Kent staff and a current part-time law student at our Medway campus) will be donning their Super Hero outfits to take part in this unusual event.

Of the challenge, Felicity said: “I am really looking forward to Sunday’s very exciting event and have my outfit at the ready!  The Kent Law Campaign is a very important project which will provide huge benefits to our students and local comminuty once our vision becomes a reality. The Kent Law Clinic is a real asset to society and it gives students first hand experiences of what law is like in reality. I feel honoured to be able to play a part in its future.”

The team has currently raised 72% of their £300 target and we hope that you will be able to contribute to their fund to help them reach their goal by sponsoring them online.  www.justgiving.com/kentlawcampaignsuperheroes

We will request photographs from the team after the event to share with you and in the meantime wish them the best of luck for their challenge!