Ilona Wrzeszcz: TV inspiration, volunteering, the Citizens Advice Bureau and blogging
Hi! My name is Ilona. I am currently finishing my second year of LLB Law at the University of Greenwich.
I have been passionate about the law for quite a few years now. The earliest memory that I have is me going to prom back in Poland when I was 11 years old, standing in front of a mirror and my nan said I look so pretty and should be a model. My response was ‘I do not want to be a model, I want to be a lawyer’. At this point, my dream career was based on a TV programme about courts. Not long after, I and my family have moved to the UK for a good education for me and my sister. I started to understand what being a lawyer meant when I was deciding on picking my options for A-Levels. To get a better understanding I have started volunteering at Citizens Advice Bureau as an adviser at the age of 16 - the youngest adviser at least in my branch.
I love how the law is involved in everything that surrounds us, it keeps evolving and as a solicitor, I will constantly be learning which is amazing! Knowledge is powerful! Whilst working within the legal field is demanding and challenging, it is what attracts me. I like achieving and succeeding, especially when the task is challenging. Law has also attracted me because of working with people. I am very much a social person and enjoy helping others in any way that I can. Many will say that lawyers do not help people, but they do. Even if they work for big corporations, they are helping someone make their dream come true.
As I knew what I wanted to do from the very beginning of university, I have been trying to do as much as I could to volunteer, get work experience, attend plenty of Open Days, and networking events. Alongside all of those, I also work part-time. Thus the past two years have been very busy, but I did and do still love it. I enjoy being busy, productive and feeling that I am trying my best. Now my aim is securing a Training Contract and keep climbing up the ladder from there.
I understand that not everyone has the time to look for opportunities or knows how to look for them and that is why I have started my Instagram blog called @ilonas_legal_diaries. It is a blog that aims to share my journey, motivate others, and help other aspiring lawyers in many ways. Regularly I post various opportunities so if you think you would like to do more, keep an eye out on my blog.
My advice would be understanding what the role of a lawyer will involve. Whether it is through work experience, studying, research, or networking. If you do all that and realize you really want a career in law, the whole stress and hard work that comes with pursuing this career will be much easier! Secondly, start looking for opportunities early! A career in law is very competitive and you need to make sure you stand out and have done all you could.
If you would like to ask me any questions or simply chat, please feel free to get in touch with me whether that is on my Instagram blog.