Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Qualifying via the SQE as a working mum - Sian Jones

Sian Jones

Sian Jones – qualifying via the SQE as a working mum

After giving up her job as a legal advocate to take care of her three children, Sian didn’t know if she’d ever get to go back and pursue her dream career in law. However, when she came across the new accessible SQE pathway, she realised it was finally possible to achieve her goals and qualify.

“I would never have been able to do the LPC. I would never be able to afford it. So when I saw the SQE come in I thought, wow. I could actually go back to the legal profession now and qualify.”

Before jumping in feet first, Sian decided to find out if law was still what she wanted to do and took on a job at a local solicitors firm as an admin assistant: “Very quickly I realised that law was definitely what I wanted to do. Just being in that environment brought back a whole lot of excitement and I knew that this was exactly what I wanted.”

She quickly applied for a legal assistant position in the family department and got the job, then was promoted to legal advisor within six months. Whilst a training contract is not required for the SQE, when an opportunity for an SQE training contract came up, she decided she had nothing to lose and applied, and of course, she got it! With an SQE training contract under her belt, Sian knew she needed an SQE preparation course to support her through her studies and turned to Law Training Centre.

Sian Jones SQE Working Mum
“I really liked the ethos of Law Training Centre. It’s been started by people who know the environment of law and who have been there and gone through it themselves, and they’re keen to offer it to everybody and to open those pathways. I think that’s fantastic. It made me feel like I wasn’t going to be out of my depth as a mature learner coming back to it.”

Sian is now studying our SQE1 Full Prep course whilst working and raising her children as a single mother, and highlights the importance of flexibility in her studies: “The course being so flexible really helps. I can work around tea time and spending time with my kids. Sometimes I’ll even sit at the table and my youngest will be on Minecraft with his headset on, and I’ll be there with him doing a workshop.

“Plus, I can actually just put my headset in and listen to the lectures on my phone whilst I’m walking around. So I can do the dishes, help the kids, do the washing, all whilst I’m still learning.”

By studying a flexible SQE prep course with Law Training Centre, Sian has the opportunity to work alongside it, gaining legal experience and also earning whilst studying. When asked about her experience with the course, Sian was keen to stress the importance of support and the impact this has had on her studies.

“The support has been so important – recently in particular as I had an accident and have been off work for three months. Just to be able to pick the phone up and go, can I have a chat with you about this? It really helps. The support from everybody, not just my tutor but the whole Law Training Centre team, is really great. They’re not just sitting up in some ivory tower somewhere; they’re on the ground with everybody, checking in, and they’re interested, which I think is fantastic.

“The course itself is really easy to navigate, but if I have any questions about the content I wouldn’t think twice to email my tutor and ask if we can have a phone call. The workshops are also great because you can dial in and out as and when, and if you don’t catch them live they’re recorded so you can always catch up later. We also have access to Lexis+ UK now, which is fantastic. I use Lexis at work and there’s so much knowledge on there, so it’s brilliant to be able to use it for my course too.”

When asked about her advice for other aspiring lawyers, Sian told us “it’s never too late”. Before doing her law degree, she did a paralegal qualification in night school where she met a 74-year-old gentleman who had always had an interest in law. His determination to learn something new and go after something he was really interested in inspired her: “If you find something that you’re interested in, it’s worth pursuing it, no matter your age.”

Looking to the future, Sian hopes to specialise in Family and Children Law upon completion of her SQE training contract. Having previously worked for two years with the Children’s Commissioner for Wales, and currently working with family care cases at her firm, she is passionate about working on behalf of the children being an advocate for them.

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