Chinecherem Ubaka

The Covid-19 pandemic has stalled the academic progress of many students and no one is happy about it. Some cannot come to the reality that after all the night class and overnight reading, they will be stuck at home due to deadly virus. Some are even beginning to loose touch with reality. Some have ditched the law degree  and have gone into modelling, fashion design, make-up artistry, events management etc which is fine as well. So you are a law graduate and you are wondering if you can enter the labour market with your law degree in Nigeria?  

Quick answer:  YES you can.  However, you will have no access to the Exclusive rights and privileges of Lawyers who have been called to the Nigerian bar. Some of the rights include: 
1. Right to be appointed as a Magistrate, a Judge, an Attorney-General, Commissioner for Justice amongst many others.
2. Right to appear before any court of law in Nigeria as an advocate.
3. Right to Frank any legal agreement.
4. Right to be appointed as an SAN
5. Right to practice law anywhere in Nigeria as a Barrister and Solicitor.

As a law graduate, you are a graduate and as such it is expected that you are exposed and knowledgeable. You can conquer even beyond our court of study. So you need to have an open and versatile  mindset. 

So What and What can you do as a Law graduate?

You can apply for Graduate Trainee Programs and Internships in many companies, banks and organisations. Hopefully, you will get an offer. Most companies  administer numerical reasoning test, verbal and apptitude tests. Generally, Graduate Trainee Programs are very competitive.  So you need to work smart and hard.

There are so many NGO'S  in Nigeria. You can volunteer with any of them to be their Research Assistants, Team Assistant or a Grant Specialist. You need to be able to write good reports timely and effectively. You need to be versatile as well. You can also be a part of the Monitoring and Evaluation team especially where the NGO in question is a national one.

If you have extra certifications in Arbitration or mediation, that's a whoopie. You can join law-firms with ADR departments as a legal intern and a Mediation Associate. To mediate effectively, you need real and practical experiences. To get these experiences, you need to get out of your house, attach yourself to an experienced mediator and ADR professional and learn. Who knows soon, you might get a mediation brief!

You can also be a Virtual Legal Research Assistant(VLRA). You can volunteer to be a VLRA to senior lawyers you know and/or in-house counsel for a stipend. The role will keep you commercially aware and productive. 

Legal Content Creation: Everything is online these days. You can go into content creation for media houses, radio stations, blogs and vlogs. 


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