Ruth Murray, Trainee Solicitor- McCann FitzGerald, Dublin
“I graduated from Law and European Studies in 2010. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at UL and really appreciated the extensive range of opportunities that studying there offers to students. During my leaving certificate year, I was unsure of what kind of career I wanted to pursue which is why Law and European Studies was the perfect degree for me. Law Plus is a similar degree which allows you broaden the law degree and study subjects you would not normally be able to study as part of a law degree. It really keeps your options open with respect to future career prospects and also offers a unique twist on the standard law degree that other universities offer.
While studying at UL, I was a member of the Law Society and was elected Auditor in my second year. This really allowed me develop important skills in organisation, communication and research. In my third year, as part of UL’s Cooperative Education Programme, I did a stage in the European Parliament in Brussels where I worked with a MEP for four months. Following this, I studied at the University of Victoria in Canada for the second semester of third year. This was a brilliant experience, both from an educational and social perspective. I was afforded many great opportunities like being able to travel to Cuba for “spring break” and I made friends from all over the world, many of whom I am still in close contact.
In my final year, I represented UL in the Washington Ireland Programme. This is a leadership and professional development programme where I lived with a host family in Washington D.C. and worked with a United States Senator for the Summer. As part of the programme, I volunteered with Special Olympics Ireland, attended workshops by senior political advisors and had the opportunity to address a number of congressmen at a Congressional Forum on Capitol Hill.
Following my time at UL, I proceeded to do a general law master’s degree (LL.M) at Trinity College Dublin and obtained a training contract with McCann FitzGerald Solicitors during this time. I began my training contract in April 2013 and I am due to qualify as a solicitor in January 2016. I have no doubt that it was the experiences and skills that I gained through my time at UL that secured my training contract. McCann FitzGerald is a brilliant place to work. The firm is regularly awarded “Best Training and Development Programme”. I have worked in Litigation, Aviation Finance and EU and Competition departments. I also spent four months on secondment in an aviation leasing company which gave great insight into how to deal with transactions from a client perspective. What makes the firm stand out for me is the people- everyone is very approachable and friendly.
If I were to give students advice, it would be to make the most of the opportunities that are available to you. UL has so much to offer that will very definitely give you the best life experiences.”