The race is on to be named as Future Legal Mind 2016, as National Accident Helpline releases the names of the 10 finalists for this year's award. The award, which seeks to find the UK's brightest law students, attracted over 1,000 registrations of interest with entries from across the country.
Two hopefuls - the winner and highly commended candidates - will receive cash prizes of £5,000 and £2,000 respectively, along with a two-week work placement at Simpson Millar, one of National Accident Helpline's panel of partner law firms. The remaining eight finalists each receive £250.
Entrants were asked to submit essays in response to a challenging question about the commoditisation of legal services and its effect on consumers, with entries judged by a panel of industry and academic experts.
This year's 10 finalists, all studying for a law degree or graduate diploma in law (GDL), will meet for the first time on 9 March at an awards ceremony in the glorious surroundings of Lincoln's Inn in central London. They are:
• Nada Aswad, Birkbeck College, University of London
• Isaac Creighton, London Metropolitan University
• George Croft, University of Law, Birmingham
• Daniel Doig, Leeds Beckett University
• Simone Farrer, University of Glasgow
• Charlotte Jose, University of Portsmouth
• Tom Phillips, City University, London (City Law School)
• Ryan Pledge, University of Portsmouth
• Rebecca Titus Cobb, BPP University, Manchester
• Pavlos Artemios Xagoraris, City University London (City Law School)
Chair of judges and Managing Director of National Accident Helpline Simon Trott said:
"In a rapidly changing legal landscape it's vital that our future lawyers are able to strike the right balance between the commercial demands of the profession and the need to protect access to justice and high quality legal services.
“We have been very struck by the strength of some of the entries for the award, which provided real food for thought for some seasoned industry veterans."
Janet Tilley, Director of Volume Legal Services at Simpson Millar, said:
"The Future Legal Mind award provides a wonderful opportunity to engage with and support young lawyers at the very start of their careers.
“I'm confident that through this challenging essay subject, we've found two of the UK's sharpest young legal minds, and we very much look forward to welcoming them to Simpson Millar for work experience this summer.”