Saad Ali

Trainee Solicitor at Addleshaw Goddard LLP - qualifying as a corporate lawyer. 

Class of 2009

Law (A) Psychology (A) history (B)

University: LLB, European and International Law at the University of Sheffield

After completing my GCSEs at Fir Vale, I went on to study Law, History and Psychology at Longley Park Sixth Form College. I’d already made my mind up in wanting to do law following a visit from Sheffield University whilst in school, and being part of a mock trial competition in year 10.

Having securing A level grades to study the European and International law degree at Sheffield University, I started my 4 year law degree, where I spent 3 years in Sheffield, and 1 year studying abroad in Melbourne, Australia at Monash University (a top 20 law school globally).

After completing my degree I moved to London to complete my LPC and Masters followed by starting my training contract at Addleshaw Goddard LLP. It has been both a challenging but rewarding journey, and god willingly I qualify as a corporate lawyer in 2021. 

Message to students: 

First and foremost, it doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from or what your socio-economic background is, if you set yourself a goal and focus on achieving this goal, nothing can stop you! Don’t let anyone tell you you’re not good enough - the onus is on you to achieve your goals and ambitions. The starting point however is self-belief, that you and you alone will achieve your goals.

School will equip you with all the basic skills to go on to fulfil your goals and ambitions. Whether that’s becoming a doctor, lawyer, engineer, social-worker or teacher, you have the raw skills to achieve that. It takes dedication and determination, no matter your background, race or religion. Just remember, no one got anywhere without having drive, passion and a strong will. I would recommend setting yourself a goal/target once you leave school. Choose your A levels based on these goals but remember, A levels go by very quickly so make sure you focus when you’re doing them. They are the gateway to getting into universities of your choice. 

When you get to university, make the most of everything it has to offer! Who would have thought a young boy born and raised in Page Hall (who wasn’t the brightest in his year) would live in Melbourne and work as a corporate lawyer in an international law firm! But if I of all people can do it, anyone can!

Take small steps into achieving your goals - one by one, tick each step off as you achieve it. Remember to keep challenging yourself. Your biggest hurdle is you, but only if you allow yourself to be. Find good mentors and speak to people who have achieved what you want to achieve. You’ll be surprised at how many people are willing to help!

Keep focused and remember the bigger picture. Life isn’t about having fast cars or lots of money at a young age - it takes time. That will come with hard work and academic success. Once you have that, the rest will follow. Make sure you surround yourself with good friends! They say you are what your company is, so make friends with ambitious and driven individuals. It will help you more than you can imagine!

Keep believing in your abilities, and remember, no matter who you are or where you came from, you alone choose your future path. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!