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Escape from the Law: My Semester Abroad

Girl walking down dirt road with suitcase

All law students have probably had the thought, “what would university be like if I didn’t study law?” Last semester I got to find out when I took the opportunity to finish my arts degree in England. I wanted to be able to focus solely on my arts subjects, have an ‘easier’ semester before beginning straight law, and take the chance to see some of the world before I graduate.

In a typical semester I spend around 80% of my time focussing on my law subjects and 20% on my two arts majors: philosophy and archaeology. I love these subject areas, but I have to admit that I’ve spent most of my degree putting in minimal effort so that I have more time to focus on law. But this semester I took subjects on Kant’s critique of pure reason, understanding moral obligations, and funerary archaeology, and was able to focus solely on my majors. The slightly smaller workload was also excellent for weekend trips away.

There have been some definite benefits to spending a semester abroad and taking time to focus on my other degree. It has given me a breather before I launch into the final stages of my degree and an opportunity to realise that I really do want to continue studying law and pursue a legal career. It also meant that I was able to study subjects that my home university didn’t offer. Despite the slightly idealised life of an arts student, I missed the pace of law school and the challenges it brings with it.

This semester has also given me the opportunity to travel the world, meet loads of new people, experience different cultures and face the challenges of moving across the world without friends or family. Perhaps the best part has been having time to focus on my other interests, and develop some new ones. Although I’ve been enjoying the new opportunities and experiences while I’ve been overseas, part of me is looking forward to heading home and getting back into law.

So if you’re needing a break from law but don’t want to stop studying, or want to see some more of the world, or aren’t entirely sure that law is for you, take the opportunity to spend a semester overseas. I recommend it!

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