James Stokes

What did you study before the LLM?

Before the LLM I did a BA in Legal Science, Politics and Sociology followed by the LLB. I then qualified as a solicitor.

Why did you choose to study the LLM in Law, Technology and Governance in NUI Galway?

I had a particular interest in studying corporate governance which attracted me to this LLM.

What areas in the programme did you enjoy the most?

Unsurprisingly Corporate Governance! I ultimately did my thesis in that area, it was very topical as the banking collapse was unfolding as we studied how corporate collapses occur. I found this module very enjoyable. 

Why would you recommend the programme to potential applicants?

The programme is quite varied and there are a good range of subjects available. A lot of effort is put into the programme in terms of organising guest speakers and encouraging students to participate in conferences and so forth. The programme therefore provides an excellent opportunity to improves one's CV and hopefully one's career prospects.

How has the programme helped you in your chosen career path?

When I did my interview for my current position, I emphasised the legal research and legal writing skills which I had gained through completing the LLM. I believe this was a key factor in obtaining my current position.

What does a typical working day involve for you?

I work in the Four Courts as a Judicial Fellow. From 9-11 I am either working on a draft judgment or studying the papers i.e.  submissions, book of pleadings, book of authorities etc. I attend court from 11-1 and 2-4. I would then meet with the judge in his chambers to discuss the case and any work that I was doing for him. As the case unfolds I make notes on the key points as outlined by counsel. From 4-6:00 I continue working on judgments. The judgments set out the parties, relief sought, background, relevant law, both parties submissions, and the decision of the court. The judge will give me comprehensive notes on his judgment before I set about drafting it for him.  The judge will examine the draft and specify changes to be made.The role of the Judicial Fellow is intended to assist very busy judges. I do not attend court on Monday as the judge will be dealing with call overs. 

Graduate profiles

Want to read more about why our graduates chose this programme, or how it has helped them find employment?

Check out the full profiles on Deirdre JenningsTony McDonnellDamien McCalligAonghus McClaffertyAisling McMahon and James Stokes.

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