Most would think that moving and adjusting to life in another country is the toughest part of being an international student. However, the most critical part of making the decision to pursue a degree in another country should be this: what happens after I get my degree?
I have learned that many students that begin a degree elsewhere often don’t think about what happens afterwards. In my case, I was lucky to have many resources and connections that were able to simplify my understanding of the process to become a licensed lawyer in Ontario.
Prior to even applying for law schools in the UK I had to figure out which, out of the hundreds of law schools in the UK, offered law degrees that were accepted by the National Committee of Accreditation (NCA). The NCA only accepts degrees from schools that are deemed to have a qualifying law degree, per the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). Thus, I only applied to programs accepted by the SRA.
Now, in order to qualify in Canada and carry on to take the Ontario Bar Exam, I must either successfully complete an LLM or pass at least 5 NCA exams on various legal subjects, as well as successfully complete a legal writing course. Students may be assigned anywhere between 5-10 exams.
So, what’s the process?
- Research which schools offer qualifying law degrees
- Apply, select, and attend school (the fun part)
- Apply to the NCA for assessment, or apply for an LLM
- Complete NCA exams or LLM, receive NCA Certificate of Qualification
- Pass the Bar
- World domination! (Aka, be a lawyer)
Considering all of this, was it worth it to go abroad?
I had a fantastic experience living abroad; it was a privilege to be able to experience life in another country, as well as make meaningful connections that are still important to me today.
Meriam Noori, LLB