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Laura Devine - LLB 1986

I was attracted to study at UCL as it was founded and influenced by the utilitarian radical philosopher Jeremy Bentham. UCL was the first English secular university and the first British university to admit women.

Bentham advocated individual and economic freedom, the separation of church and state, freedom of expression, equal rights for women, the right to divorce, and the decriminalising of homosexuality. He demanded the abolition of slavery, the abolition of the death penalty, and the abolition of physical punishment, including that of children. He was also an early advocate of animal rights.

It is in tradition of the free thinking, progressive ideas of Bentham that so many of the professors at UCL Laws excel. Some of my best memories of my time as an undergraduate are of Professor Michael Freeman’s wonderfully stimulating and controversial lectures and tutorials.

I graduated in 1986 and took articles at CMS Cameron McKenna, prior to working at PricewaterhouseCoopers and Eversheds. In 2003 I founded Laura Devine Solicitors, of which I am the Managing Partner.

LDS is a boutique immigration firm with 60 staff in offices in London and New York. We provide UK and US immigration services.

When setting up my law firm I was confident that my three years at UCL Laws gave me a comprehensive understanding of the law and a sound ethical base, both of which are vital in leading a law firm. I shall forever be grateful to UCL Laws as it provided me with the inspiration, knowledge and principles to establish the leading boutique immigration firm in the City.

I am delighted that I still have a strong link with the Faculty and that for the past three year have hosted the annual UCL Laws Alumni Summer Reception. It is a pleasure to be able to give back and offer internships and employment to current and future students.

I would recommend UCL Laws to all those interested in embarking on a career in law who seek to experience a free thinking and intellectually challenging education.