Maya Sterrie

Maya Sterrie

What motivated you to apply to study your chosen course and why did you chose Leeds?

I always had an interest in legal cases I would see or read about them in the news. Through studying history I found the legislative developments intrigued me more than the actual history. I started following more cases, visiting the local courts and decided that Law would be the subject for me to pursue at university.

Leeds stood out to me for numerous reasons. Firstly, I wanted to be on a campus and I loved how Leeds was not only a campus University, but also extremely close to the city centre - only a 10 minute walk! More importantly for me though, I wanted to go somewhere which was high achieving and used different assessment methods. For example, one of my modules this year is divided into one essay (worth 60%) and four short portfolios (the remaining 40%).

What do you think of your course, have there been any particular highlights for you?

I think the variety in assessment methods is definitely one of my favourite aspects of studying Law at Leeds. I get to learn and engage with different modules in creative ways, for example getting to make a poster on the autonomy of pornography stars.

Also even within the past year I have noticed how much the staff respond to student feedback. For example, one of our exams was reduced from being worth 100% to 80% this year as the previous cohort explained it was incredibly hard and would have preferred the module being less weighted on one final exam. I am very grateful for how much they respect our opinions and change their teaching or examination methods by listening to what the students have to say.

On top of this, getting to volunteer for the Welfare Rights Clinic in Harehills has been one of my highlights of second year. The School of Law offers incredible pro-bono opportunities including volunteering for the clinic, all of which allow you to get a deeper understanding of the profession and giving you the opportunity to help others.

How would you describe the help and guidance provided by the staff within the School?

There are many support systems offered throughout the University and within the School of Law. At the beginning of first year we were given information for all staff that can provide us with guidance, as well as being introduced to them in lectures. I felt confident that if I was to have any problems there would be people I could turn to.

Generally in Leeds I feel there is a very considerate and understanding environment whereby everyone respects and doesn’t judge one another. If anyone is struggling, there is an unprecedented amount of support services to turn to.

How would you describe the facilities at the University?

It depends what you are looking for really! The University campus is huge. I think the best facilities are the sports centre in the middle of campus, which is the most beautiful sports and gym I have ever seen, as well as the Students’ Union. After the recent upgrade to the Union, the three-floored building offers restaurants, a chilled out café, a pub, a club and has vintage sales almost every day. There is something for everyone.

Have you been involved in extra-curricular activities?

I have been heavily involved in the Jewish Society, being their campaigns officer for the past year, and am the current Secretary for the Spoken Word Society. On top of my societal work, I represented Leeds University Union at two NUS (National Union of Students) conferences last April, where I got to elect the next President.  The University of Leeds has hundreds of awesome societies, catering to all sorts of hobbies and interests – it has been hard to fit it all in to my schedule!

I am also involved with the School of Law’s Welfare Rights Clinic, which involves me travelling to Harehills a couple of times a term and seeing clients who are seeking help in filling out forms regarding Employment or Disability benefits. I have really enjoyed getting trained and supporting all the clients I have met, and think if anyone else is offered such an opportunity, they should take it!