The City Law School alumna impresses judges with her essay regarding the Law Commission’s latest proposals to expand the range of digital sexual crimes in the UK.
City alumna Elena Michael, who completed her Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) in 2019, has won the National Accident Helpline’s (NAHL) Future Legal Mind 2021.
Entrants to the law essay competition were asked to tell the judging panel: Why they chose to study the area of law they were most passionate about; and, which area of the law or UK legal system they thought was broken and required urgent reform.
Elena’s entry referenced #NotYourPorn, a campaign she co-founded to fight for the removal of non-consensual content from UK porn sites. Her essay focused on the Law Commission’s latest proposals to expand the range of digital sexual crimes in the UK and its plans to reform the 2015 laws relating to this.
Contribution to legal reform
She now plans on developing this campaign over the course of the next year. She then hopes to travel to the U.S. to do an LLM before pursuing a PhD in digital sexual crimes and going on to apply for pupillage. She also runs her own consultancy for children whose studies are impacted by their mental health and works as an Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) therapy administrator for children.
The 26-year-old will receive a £2,000 prize fund to help further her career and mentoring with experienced lawyers from National Accident Helpline.
“It took me several days to process the news that I’d won. Having followed the competition for the last two years, I’d not felt brave enough to apply before. I really love what the Award stands for in celebrating those starting out in the profession and appreciating our potential to innovate. Entering the competition was a way for me to feel more empowered and confident in my chosen path to the Bar.”
James Catchpole, Associate Dean (Postgraduate and Professional Programmes) at the City Law School, said:
We wish to heartily congratulate Elena on her brilliant success. The Future Legal Mind essay competition is one of the leading law essay competitions in the UK and the City Law School prides itself in preparing students to be at the front ranks of the legal profession. Elena is on the way to making a very substantial contribution to legal reform of the porn industry in support of the #NotYourPorn campaign.
Will Herbertson, Marketing and Strategy Director at NAHL Group, said:
“We were astounded by the quality and quantity of entries received this year. Elena focused on the Law Commission’s latest proposals to expand the range of digital sexual crimes in the UK and its plans to reform the 2015 laws that relate to this. She believes that these ideas fall short of the much-needed regulation of the porn industry. Her entry was truly outstanding and she’s a very worthy winner.”
Future Legal Mind is in its seventh year and has seen past winners go on to become solicitors and barristers.