David Giraldo Rojas is an Alumni at City for the LLM in International Banking and Corporate Finance Law.
Why did you choose to study the Master of Laws?
I choose to study the LLM firstly because of my background - I am from a family of lawyers.
My goal has always been to be the first of my kind to complete an LLM abroad, in a Common Law Jurisdiction. Second, I am very keen to broaden my legal skills in a specific topic that would allow me to pursue better job opportunities.
Which modules/specialism did you choose to study and why?
International Corporate Law, Banking Law, Commercial Arbitration (audited), Project Finance, EU Banking Law, Money laundering (Audited), and International Investment Law (Audited).
These modules were the ones that caught my attention from the very beginning, and I hoped they would help me to become a banking and finance Lawyer.
Why did you choose to study with The City Law School?
The City Law School has everything that I was looking for: prestige; quality; outstanding graduate employability rate; and a well-ranked program. A
lso, my partner got accepted into the MSc in Human-Computer Interaction Design at the university. Honestly, the opportunity of being together with her in the same university was very exciting.
Did you take part in any extracurricular activities?
I had the honour and privilege of being selected as a student representative. I regard this role as very effective in making a significant contribution towards the improvement of the LLM.
Also, I was part of the Common Purpose Leadership Course, which was indeed a pleasant week of self-growth and a very innovative way to meet other City students from different programs. Likewise, I was a keen follower of the Bollywood nights in the CityBar.
Can you tell us more about what you are doing now? What is your job role and what do you do?
I am currently working as a Middle Office Associate in an Investment Fund, focusing on impact investing specifically in the Green, Social, and Sustainability bonds issuance.
The firm is dedicated to financing micro, small and medium enterprises in emerging and frontier markets.
My role is about transaction management concerning bond issuances, drafting of legal documentation, surveillance of various SPVs among others.
What I like about this job is the chance to contribute to improving the lives of people in emerging and frontier countries and working towards supporting the UN Sustainable Development Goals from a financial point of view.
And finally, although challenging but at the same time very exciting, I am preparing to take the QLTS exam to qualify as a solicitor in England and Wales.
How did studying the Master of Laws help you in your career so far?
Starting a legal career in London and in the middle of a once-in-a-century pandemic is not an easy endeavour. Fortunately, as a City Law School Alumni with its prestige in the UK, this process has been more straightforward.
I have to admit that not only in my current role but also in my previous jobs, the LLM opened up career opportunities that probably were not available without it.
Moreover, the knowledge I got from the LLM is essential in my current job.
What did you enjoy most about studying in London?
Simple answer, everything! from the fresher’s week to staying at late hours in the library, to the Law ball or the networking events, to the graduation ceremony in the Barbican Centre.
It was by far the best academic experience of my life. It is indeed countless what London has to offer; one of my classmates used to say, “London is the only city in the world where you will never find just enough of something”.
In other words, you can find everything you always want to and there is still more to discover. I couldn't agree more with that statement.
Do you have any advice or tips for future Master of Laws students?
- Engage as much you can with the activities that both the City Law school and the whole university has.
- Don’t be shy to ask questions, don’t feel sorry for your accent, don’t start your essays late (I did and still regret it) - and don’t forget to use OOSCOLA when citing.
- Find a topic that you enjoy reading and learning for the dissertation because it will be very present in your life as a student. As an LLM student, you have access to many libraries around the city, such as the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. They do have very niche and useful sources that are not easy to find, plus there is the chance to meet fellow lawyers from other universities.
- Treat the LLM as a full-time job, with 35-40 per week, so you will have enough time to enjoy the city.
- Get an account in Unidays. If you are a coffee lover like me, a Pret subscription is a must to save some pounds for good coffee.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
One of the best things about The City Law School when comparing with other Universities offering the same program, is the possibility to have more proximity with professors and students.
We really have the chance to know each other very well, whereas in other faculties this is harder because of the vast number of students.
Doing an LLM in City is like every other thing in life. It has its pro and cons, but overall, this an experience of a lifetime.
If someone is considering taking this course after the pandemic, this LLM will bring fun, joy, and a sense of massive accomplishment, in those times where we need it the most.