Mr. Matthew Sadler, is an academic specialising in Business and Commercial Law at the Law School of the UK-based Staffordshire University. In conversation with Anuj Kumar, Founder – Legal Desire, He talks about the various career programmes offered by Stafforshire University for Law Students and his experience during visit to Indian Law Schools.
- How would you like to introduce yourself to our readers?
I am a Lecturer in Business and Commercial Law at Staffordshire University as well as a Doctoral Research Candidate investigating Employment/Labour Law and Equality.
- What are your areas of specialisation?
I teach Undergraduate students the core subjects of Law of Contract and Problem Solving, Law of Torts and Civil Liabilities and English Legal System and Legal Skills. I also teach final year undergraduates Employment and Equality Law as well as Business and Commercial Law to non-law students. My postgraduate teaching portfolio includes Corporate Finance Law and related Labour Law.
- What was the main aim behind establishing Staffordshire University Law School and how is it different from other law schools?
The teaching of law in Staffordshire dates back over 30 years and the current Law School became a constituent part of the current institution when Staffordshire University was established in 1992. As an institution in varying formats, professional education provision has been available for over 100 years. We are very similar to other Law Schools but we pride ourselves that we put the ‘Student Experience’ at the very core of everything we do in order that students can maximise their learning experience.
- How is your School imparting practical skills to students apart from academic knowledge?
The Law School at Staffordshire University provides undergraduate and postgraduate teaching within a practical and problem based format allowing students to reach their academic potential whilst acquiring career relevant skills and attributes. The Legal Advice Clinic, which students can become involved with from their second year of study, allows students to develop work-ready skills which are valued by employers. We incorporate the ‘Staffordshire Graduate Pledge’ into all of our teaching to ensure attributes of Enterprise, Entrepreneurialism and Employability as core values within our teaching. This ensures that our graduates are ready for the challenges of their professional career development.
- Tell us something about School’s new LLM programmes in Human Resource Management and Employment as well as Family Law and Society. Also whether these programmes are regular one or there is any option of distance learning?
We believe that law does not sit in text books but is a dynamic subject that impacts daily life for everyone. Our programs reflect this belief and our newly designed Master’s programs blend legal theory with law in action from a real world perspective. Both our new programs incorporate business and commercial awareness, socio-legal application, critical analysis of current professional practice alongside intra-disciplinary approaches to legal study. At Staffordshire University we are aware of the importance of Global Citizenship and have tailored our study programs to reflect our desire to encourage student diversity. Consequently we have study options that incorporate attended sessions in the UK alongside electronic engagement that can be conducted from anywhere in the world.
- Kindly let us know whether there is any provision for scholarship for your programmes and if yes how to apply for it.
We have a number of scholarship programs that are available to Indian Students. We believe that rewarding academic achievement should be at the core of our scholarship opportunities. We therefore offer attractive financial support mechanisms for International applicants that also reward students’ on-going academic performance. Our scholarships are merit-based and at undergraduate level are available for each year of undergraduate study, subject to academic performance.
- You are visiting India to tie up with various colleges and other organisations. How was your experience here and what was your opinion about law schools in India? Also tell us about your tie ups.
My experience of India has been invaluable. I was extremely impressed with the knowledge, understanding and ability demonstrated by the Indian students. Their grasp of legal principles and facts alongside the ability to apply these attributes was exciting to witness. The students’ abilities are clearly a reflection of the professional educators tasked with their learning and I witnessed some of the most dedicated and motivated faculty staff who should feel proud of their students’ achievements. There were some very positive collaboration meetings conducted during my time in India. We are currently working on various programs that will hopefully facilitate closer collaboration with Indian higher education institutions. We listened carefully to their needs and desires and our tailored approach will reflect this.
- Tell us something about Staffordshire University Legal Advice Clinic (SULAC).
Our Legal Advice Clinic allows students to apply their legal skills and attributes within an actual legal practice. We offer pro bono services within the field of civil litigation to the general public as well as students and University staff. Students can also utilise their practical experience as part of the Legal Advice Centre module and earn academic credit.
- How effective are these diploma prorammes offered by SU and what are the career prospectives?
Within the legal profession there are many opportunities for International students to attain their professional accreditations and subsequently seek sponsorship in order to qualify as legal practitioners. We have had a number of Indian students over recent years that have opted to choose Staffordshire University for their legal education. However it has sometimes been difficult for Indian students to utilise their UK education when returning home. This is why we are actively seeking to meet the needs and expectations of visiting students and have a flexible learning approach to their educational needs. This will open possibilities for Indian Students and allow them to realise their potential with academic credentials that mirror their career development goals.
- Your message to our readers (Law Students and Lawyers)?
The United Kingdom welcomes International students, practitioners and faculty members who want to succeed in their chosen career. At Staffordshire University our dedicated International Support Teams will assist International applicants for our law courses at every stage of their journey to becoming Staffordshire University students with specialised and individual advice and guidance.