Student profile: Firas T Malhas

Programme: LLM International Commercial Law
Nationality: Jordanian

Due to the uniqueness of its geographic location, Birmingham is a hub for commerce, trade and education. It is not only that history converges with modern life in this city, but various cultures coexist and interact with each other. This combination makes Birmingham a cosmopolitan city that attracts not only international students but international law students in particular. The modules offered by the school are very specialised and assist students to extend their legal knowledge. The leaders of the modules combine practical background along with academic experience, which enriches the teaching techniques and makes the program more challenging and vibrant.

After practicing law for several years, I realised that academia plays an important role in career progression. It assists any lawyer in viewing things from different angles and enhances their analytical thinking. The LLM at Birmingham helps the students to learn about other legal systems, especially when a practitioner in the field presents a seminar. It also enables the students to utilise their legal knowledge properly and improves their legal thinking. On the other hand, the LLM programme can be an opportunity to meet other international students, with different legal backgrounds, and to make valuable networking contacts.

The LLM is not only a great course but a challenging and rewarding experience. On the one hand, the teaching techniques motivate students to participate in the class and to present their own views. Students will learn to hear and analyse the counter-arguments and to defend their own point of view.

There are lots of things you can do outside the course such as social activities, sports and workshops. On a personal level, it was a great experience to participate in workshops such as the ones organized by the Graduate Centre for Europe. Such workshops aim at improving the postgraduates’ practical skills such as communication skills, drafting professional CV, public speaking, leadership development and presentation skills. In addition, such workshops really help international students to improve their fluency in English and to enhance their communication skills.

Having completed the LLM I will return back to my country, Jordan to continue practicing my career as a lawyer, but now equipped with a higher degree along with improved skills. And, as an LLM graduate from the University of Birmingham, there will always be an opportunity to continue education and complete a PhD.