UCL Faculty of Laws


Nuala Hepworth, UCL Laws LLB Opportunity Scholarship

Nuala Hepworth 800x500

Programme, and year of study: LLB, Year 1
Where you are from: Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire, UK
Scholarship received: UCL Laws LLB Opportunity Scholarship

Why did you choose to apply to study at UCL Laws?
UCL is a world renowned institution in a city that I love. My decision to apply was confirmed after attending an open day here; UCL is wonderfully diverse and there is a real sense of innovation which I had not experienced at other universities that I had visited. UCL has a reputation for challenging and interrogating the status quo; I wanted to be a part of that.

What are your favourite things about studying at UCL Laws?
I find that the study of law is so versatile in the sense that it encompasses every aspect of life, it has broadened my world view. Since beginning my studies, I cannot help but consider what the legal perspective would be in almost all situations. 

The teaching here is also exceptional, especially in tutorials. The student-tutor interaction is extremely friendly which really helps to create a comfortable learning environment where the student does not feel intimidated by complex legal concepts or cases. When studying a subject as intense as law, it is really important to be able to feel as though you are able to approach the academics teaching you and the UCL Faculty of Laws ensures this.

What do you hope to do once your studies are complete?
Currently I am still exploring my options although I'm particularly enjoying studying contract and criminal law and would really like to practice in one of these areas. Alternatively, I would like to pursue academia with the focus on legal philosophy and the intertwining of law and theology. In either case, UCL Laws has a very useful careers services which is very helpful in directing and nurturing students towards the career path that they choose; the UCL Law Society also offers a multitude of networking events.

What impact has receiving this scholarship had for you?
Receiving the scholarship has transformed my experience at UCL. Prior to receiving the scholarship, I knew that I would be in financial hardship, especially with the soaring living costs in London. I worried about how I would manage my studies alongside a job and feared that I would not be able to afford even the basic course materials which could seriously inhibit my academic progression. However, the scholarship has granted me such a sense of relief as I am able to dedicate my time completely to my studies and I am no longer held back by financial anxiety.

If you hadn’t received this scholarship what do you think your plans would be?
If I had not received this scholarship, I would have seriously considered attending a university closer to my home in the north of England purely for financial reasons or taking a gap year to save up money for university; although both would have been crushing as my heart was set on UCL.

How did you hear about the UCL Laws scholarships?
Once I applied to UCL, I followed the UCL Laws Twitter page and heard about the scholarship on there.

If someone was thinking of applying for a scholarship, what would you say to them?
The scholarship has transformed my university experience and I believe applying for it was one of the best decisions I have made. I feel as though I am in such a privileged position and receiving the scholarship boosted my confidence to study law massively. I had already secured my place at UCL once I applied for the scholarship so I adopted the mindset that I had nothing to lose. If I was unsuccessful in my application, the opportunity to study Law at UCL was still there.

If someone was thinking of funding a scholarship what would you say to them?
From my experience, scholarships can be life changing, especially those which are aimed at enhancing diversity and accessibility. As a student from a background where university is not considered the natural life progression, the scholarship has really ‘evened out the playing field’, it has removed any sense of impostor syndrome which I undoubtedly would have felt without.

Not only are scholarships majorly important in the practical sense of aiding students to purchase even the basic course materials and obtain illustrious career opportunities, they are also fundamental in supporting the mental wellbeing of students. Financial anxiety can be crippling and a huge burden on students which consequently inhibits academic progression however, the opportunity to receive a scholarship can completely eradicate this hence the generosity of those who fund scholarships is so integral to promoting an inclusive and progressive educational system.