Clearing the way to a brighter future - towards a lifelong dream to become a lawyer

Published: 16 July 2007 at 13:48

As Anglia Ruskin University prepares to welcome hundreds of students through Clearing one student tells of the anxiety that can lurk beneath the university admissions process.

Anglia Ruskin University is getting set to talk to students who are facing a crunch decision about their higher education study requirements during the forthcoming period of admissions known as ‘Clearing’.

Clearing applies to students who did not get the results they had hoped for, those who may not have gained a place in the first round of applications, and to those who are too late with their application to apply through the normal means. It also caters for anyone wishing to further their studies, including mature students (those over the age of 21).

It is a time of anxiety and stress for many young people who simply want to get themselves into the right university on the appropriate course for them. Mala Patel, (20) who is graduating from BSc (Hons) Law course next year, can remember exactly what it was like. She heard that her first and second choice universities were not offering her a place and so she had to enter into the Clearing process to get where she wanted to be.

“When the top two universities on my list increased the grades needed for admission, I was thrown into a real panic. I thought I would struggle to get a place and that I might end up miles from home, possibly somewhere in the middle of Wales! My family are based in Crawley, West Sussex, and so I was hoping to be somewhere within fairly easy reach of them.”

“My brother had studied at Anglia Ruskin University’s Cambridge campus and so the university was familiar to me. When I applied through Clearing for the law course the advisers where really helpful and calming. They gave me a very speedy answer to my request to study there and by the time I had the offer I had every confidence in the fact that this was the right choice for me.”

Mala, who went to school at the Old Palace School of John Whitgift, Croydon, studied Government and Politics, Italian, French and Geography at A Level before applying for a university place.

Once she has completed her degree she will undertake a one year Legal Practice Course which will enable her to qualify as a solicitor. After this time she will spend two years in training which is the standard route to a career within the legal profession.

Her ambition is to specialise in either immigration law or family law. Having completed work experience within a law firm that specialises in immigration law, she is particularly keen to explore this route. She continues:

“Immigration is one of the hottest issues of the moment and one that I would ideally love to focus on. If I do choose this as my specialism it will also stand me in good stead if I eventually choose to work abroad.”

“For the time being I am very happily settled in Essex. It is the perfect place to pursue my lifelong dream of studying law.”

An advertising campaign featuring the strapline How far do you want to go? will be rolled out during August to get this year’s clearing message across. 

It is designed to encourage as many people as possible to make the call to Anglia Ruskin University to secure a place on one of the courses.

The campaign will be seen on buses and at poster sites around Essex and Cambridgeshire. The main campuses, in Chelmsford and Cambridge, will feature wall-sized clearing posters and banners as a reminder to people from the region that it is not too late to take up a degree course at the University.

There are over 70 subject areas available for study and the pathway leaders for each are encouraging people looking for courses to come forward and ask questions.  New courses for September 2007 for Chelmsford include a new BA (Hons) Drama and BA (Hons) Fine Art. The move will help to feed more talent into the growing creative industries sector.

Anglia Ruskin’s Director of Marketing Alan Cain comments:

“This can be a highly stressful time of the year for some students who are yet to secure the course that is right for them.”

“As always, it is the University’s promise to develop fast-thinking, work-ready graduates who will have the competitive edge in the jobs market they need to launch them into their chosen careers.”

Anglia Ruskin’s Clearing Hotline 0845 271 3333 will be the centre of a network of support and information for students (and their parents) who want to speak to student advisers before choosing from the various higher education options.  A Clearing website facility is also available for students at

Around 80 advisers will be on hand during Clearing Week and the service will continue into the weeks following.  When people call the clearing hotline they should have an idea of the subject area they would like to study, a copy of their results and a list of questions they feel they want answered, such as on fees, living costs or accommodation issues.

Anglia Ruskin University has a total of 27 000 students at its two main campuses at Chelmsford and Cambridge and its regional partnership colleges. The majority of them are from the East of England. Last year, during Clearing, the most popular courses included law, science and technology, optometry and social work.

The Anglia Ruskin Clearing Contact Centre opens from 8am-8.00pm on Thursday 16 August, 8.00am-6.00pm on Friday 17 August, 10.00am-3.00pm on Saturday 18 August and from 11pm- 4.00 pm on Sunday 19 August.  People can get in touch by phone on 0845 271 3333.