From Uganda to Leeds: An International Postgraduate Student's Experience at the School of Law

Embarking on a journey from Uganda to Leeds, Syndia shares her experience of studying International Human Rights Law at the School of Law.

Embarking on a journey to study a postgraduate degree in law is often driven by a profound desire to effect change and advocate for justice. For many prospective students, the decision to pursue a degree in law is deeply rooted in personal experiences and a commitment to making a difference in the world.

This was the case for Syndia Chemutai, an international postgraduate taught student from Uganda currently pursuing a LLM in International Human Rights Law at the University of LeedsSchool of Law.

Syndia’s decision to study law was fuelled by her desire to advance her knowledge in human rights and advocacy, drawing from her previous experiences in promoting social justice in Uganda.

Reflecting on why she chose to study International Human Rights, Syndia explains,

I chose to study International Human Rights Law at the University of Leeds to get an opportunity to investigate the law in relation to the protection of life and human dignity, with a specific focus on development and human rights, globalisation, economic and natural resources regulation, gender justice, health care, climate justice, democracy, and governance – as these are very key contemporary human rights issues in Uganda and all over the world.

Syndia emphasises that she chose the programme at the School of Law because of its focus on developing critical thinking skills, social and legal policy analysis, and effective communication. Additionally, Syndia highlights that one of the key highlights of her course has been its practicality and relevance in today's world.

Beyond her academic pursuits, Syndia has also been actively involved in extra-curricular activities, including trips organised by the School of Law and social events. These experiences have not only allowed her to explore different parts of the UK but also to connect with professors and students from diverse backgrounds, enriching her university experience.

While Syndia recognises there have been a few challenges when adjusting to a new environment, she highlights the supportive role of the School of Law staff through this process, saying,

My personal tutor and other staff have been very supportive in helping me settle in and enjoy my studies.

As an international student, Syndia offers valuable advice to those considering studying in Leeds. She encourages them to embrace the multicultural environment of the city and take advantage of the many opportunities the University of Leeds has to offer.

Looking ahead, Syndia’s plans after graduation are ambitious yet purposeful. She aims to continue her advocacy work, particularly focusing on the protection of women and children's rights. With aspirations to pursue a PhD in Law, Syndia hopes to be part of a team of experts who advocate and come up with solutions in the field of women and children’s rights in Uganda, Africa and globally.