Please note! This essay has been submitted by a student.
I am fascinated by the ever-evolving nature of law and how it can be used to respond to the challenges facing the society today. This first occurred to me when I had the chance to participate in an international workshop-based event called “Debating Threats to Democracy” organized by the International Debating Education Association in Slovakia in 2017. One of the topics of the event was how legislation could be – and is – used to combat hate speech, terrorism and climate change. I recently read the book “Letters to a Law Student”, where the author Nicholas McBride writes, “– studying law gives us reason to be hopeful. ” I am motivated to pursue an education in Law to gain skills and insight, which I can apply to contribute to the creation of a better society. This, to me, indeed gives a reason to remain hopeful about the future. I have an interest in social justice and human rights advocacy, which is another reason why I aspire to study Law.
I first began to consider the relationship between society, individuals and the law while listening to Radiolab’s law podcast “More Perfect”, which highlighted to me how the decisions of the United States Supreme Court have historically shaped the American society with reference to race, gender and social class. I then went to see a lecture by Françoise Hamlin called “Rethinking the Civil Rights Movement: History and Remembering”, which made me aware of how the law can be reformed to fight inequality. I am intrigued by the considerations of equality and justice that arise with relation to law. I am keen to learn about how the law functions to promote equality and prevent discrimination, which is why I am particularly interested in human rights law as a part of the Law course. I believe that the demands of my chosen subjects in the International Baccalaureate diploma programme have equipped me with a set of skills, which I can draw upon while studying Law at university.
Studying Higher Level History and Higher Level English has taught me to scrutinize and interpret texts with the context and purpose in mind, a skill applicable in statutory interpretation. Both are also essay-based subjects, teaching me independent research skills and academic writing skills required in higher education. Studying Higher Level Business Management has taught me to determine and compare the relative importance of different factors before making a decision, which I imagine bears a resemblance to judicial decision-making. The course has also given me an insight into the legislation affecting businesses. I am actively involved in my school’s Debating Society. I was a member of the school’s debate team for the Finnish World Schools Debating Championships, where we placed first and second in 2017 and 2018, respectively. My experiences in competitive debate have allowed me to develop my public speaking, listening and collaboration skills. Outside of school, I have been playing the violin for seven years, demonstrating commitment and perseverance, particularly when learning challenging pieces.
My interest in the study of Law and the skills I have acquired in my prior education ensure that I can confidently look towards the new opportunities and challenges offered by higher education.