"Happy and excited" - that's how Law graduate Tanja Hofer feels to have started work for a leading European intellectual property firm.
The 24-year-old from Essen, Germany, has been with D Young & Co for just over a month, having studied for both her undergraduate and postgraduate courses at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU).
She said: "It has taken a lot of work and determination to come to work in the field I enjoyed studying so much."
Based in Southampton, Tanja's role as a legal assistant involves research as well as general administrative duties and she credits DMU with equipping her with the necessary skills.
"I chose DMU for my undergraduate degree because it was one of the few universities that offered Law, Human Rights and Social Justice," she said.
Tanja was impressed with the practical aspects. "It wasn't just the theory we were to learn and discuss but the course also gave us an insight into the day-to-day activities involved in a law firm.
"My favourite feature was the teaching and support from staff. We were all treated respectfully and pushed to our best performances.
"Everyone was helpful, even with our CVs and support in finding suitable law firms to apply to.
"I do feel that even now I can come to them with any queries."
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Tanja gained extra experience by participating in Street Law, which sees students go out into the community to help people with legal issues, and the DMU Law Clinic.
"This was very helpful, as it gave me an insight into what queries might arise and how to properly assess and research issues," she said.
"I also volunteered for the Witness Service. It allowed me to attend court and support witnesses in the waiting rooms and explain to them how the system worked and reassure them, as some found the entire experience quite daunting.
"It was good experience to see first-hand how a magistrates' court works."
Tanja's highlight was her graduation in 2014. "The whole ceremony was fantastic and really allowed me to celebrate the success with my family."
She returned to DMU for her Legal Practice Course (LPC) - with help from the Vice Chancellor's 2020 Scholarship.
"I received a 25 per cent discount and it was only because of this scholarship that I was able to do my postgraduate studies," added Tanja, who is awaiting her results.
"It was pleasant to come back to campus and know my environment but it was definitely because of the staff that I returned.
"It has been a great joy studying at DMU."
Posted on Thursday 14th September 2017