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Coming back to university for my 2nd year after a relaxing summer break has been quite what I expected it to be- busy. Having taken on a number of leadership volunteering roles, studying Law with Business certainly wasn’t meant to be an easy road. But I have found myself truly enjoying this first semester.

One of the most important reasons why I like this year better than my 1st year is due to the modules I study this year. Getting to grips with land law, European law and torts has been interesting although understandably hard. Due to the joint honours degree, a considerable focus of my degree is on business modules, which is good because it takes my mind out of the legal books for a while and brings me to think about practical business scenarios.

I started volunteering in my 1st year as it was an excellent way for me to develop skills outside my degree. This semester has been even better since I have stepped in to become a Department Rep, a Project Leader and the Events Coordinator for the volunteering strand of the Students’ Union. Managing so many roles simultaneously has enhanced my time management abilities along with key leadership and people management skills.

A crucial part of this semester has been my applications for a placement year in industry which I will undertake after 2nd year. Having secured a placement with a multinational company which truly values its contribution to the world has been a highlight of this semester. Although my application to this company was my first application ever, I think the time I took to get each and every detail correct was the key to my success. Undergoing the usual recruitment process- online application, online tests, assessment centre and business interview it gave me a lot of experience and insight into the workings of a global company. Attending formal interviews and selling yourself to a recruiter is something which cannot be taught, it can only be learnt through experience. Now I understand why every placement student emphasises the importance of a placement, and I am glad that I will be one of those fortunate students gaining the extra experience before they graduate. Also this opportunity to live and work in London is the one every student dreams of.

On the whole, the one word to describe this 1st semester is ‘challenging’. I have been forced out of my comfort zone, been made to travel to London twice (which I had never done before and therefore was an achievement for me to make my way there on my own) and been rewarded for my work. Already having spent a year at Northumbria, I have been more comfortable with my surroundings and able to explore new territories. Now it’s time to get ready for Christmas while completing my assignments!

Looking at the new year 2016, my only resolution is to work harder and learn as much as I can; after all a degree is all about learning!

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