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Law students get training at top firm.

Two female Qatari students from Qatar University's College of Law received expert legal training at international law firm Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) during the summer.

This was part of the college's expanding Externship Programme which provides placements at top national, regional and international legal companies and institutions.

Senior student Ameena al-Mannai and sophomore Maryam al-Kbi spent the first two weeks of training in BLP's Abu Dhabi office and the remaining two weeks in its London office.

In addition to training sessions, practical workshops and formal trips, they were each assigned research projects on which they presented in both Abu Dhabi and London.

In Abu Dhabi, Ameena and Maryam were oriented on BLP's work and the key principles in the legal practice areas in which BLP operates in the country.

For their research tasks, Ameena and Maryam prepared a guide to insurance rules and regulations when doing business in the UAE, and gave a presentation comparing the civil codes of Qatar and the UAE.

The students' London training built on their Abu Dhabi experience and focused on real estate and finance laws.

Both students attended a wide range of training sessions and practical workshops that included an introduction to the English legal system, including litigation and the bar, and the process for qualifying as a solicitor in England & Wales.

They were also given an overview of the Olympic Deliver Authority, and how to do real estate transactions in the UK. The students also learned about construction contracts and procurement, and the principles and mechanisms of a finance contract.

Additional activities included a project finance exercise that involved drafting and negotiating heads of terms, and training sessions on commercial awareness and cross-cultural communication.

Ameena and Maryam also took part in various formal visits that included a tour of the Royal Courts of Justice, and the Immigration Court at Taylor House where they observed immigration trials in action and had the opportunity to discuss them with one of the immigration judges.

The students' visit to Keating Chambers provided insight into the role of a barrister in the English legal system - they also experienced real estate law in action during a visit to Qatari Diar, Chelsea Barracks and the Walkie Talkie Tower, and commercial awareness in practice in a visit to the financial hub of London.

They also attended an all-day Euromoney Legal Training activity with one of BLP's partners on the topic 'Financing the deal: Understanding the Financing Agreement'.

Ameena and Maryam also completed a broader research project to explain the English legal system and how it differs from that in Qatar.

The project covered the courts structure, how laws are made and the key similarities/differences between law in England and in Qatar, incorporating the knowledge gained from their various site visits.

College of Law dean Dr Hassan Okour said: "We are pleased with their evaluation results which attest to the quality of the training they received from their mentors at BLP."

Both students felt that the experience gave them insights into the legal system from the perspective of Qatar, the UAE and the UK that will serve to enhance their worldview and strengthen their personal and academic profiles.

Gulf Times Newspaper 2012

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Publication:Gulf Times (Doha, Qatar)
Geographic Code:7QATA
Date:Sep 5, 2012
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