Brigesa Ujkaj is The City Law School’s first recipient of the Stephen Knafler QC Scholarship

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Brigesa Ujkaj, a student on the Bar Vocational Studies course at The City Law School is the first recipient of the Stephen Knafler QC Scholarship. The scholarship was set up in memory of the late Stephen Knafler QC who was an exceptional barrister known for his work in the forefront of the protection of the rights of migrants and vulnerable asylum seekers in the UK.

Brigesa said:

“From a very young age I have aspired to a career in the legal sector. I arrived in the UK in 2017 as an asylum seeker, having left my country out of fear of being a target of human traffickers. From that moment I never thought I’d ever have the chance to get back into education due to my immigration status and language barrier.”

“Despite being temporarily detained at Yarl’s Wood, I successfully completed a law access course and an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) course. I applied for and was accepted to do a law degree at The City Law School. I was very fortunate to have been granted a Sanctuary Scholarship to begin the course and I completed it with a First Class Honours degree”.

Brigesa then applied to be admitted to the Bar Vocational Studies course to continue her studies at City, “even though she had no idea how she was going to fund it.”

“Thankfully, the university informed me about the Stephen Knafler QC Scholarship. I applied for and was granted the scholarship and it felt like a dream come true. This scholarship has made a major impact on my life and is giving me the chance to pursue a career at the Bar. I am very thankful to everyone who made this scholarship possible and who has understood my struggle – I hope one day I can make my own contribution towards this scholarship in helping asylum seekers who aspire to the Bar.”

Sue Willman, a senior consultant solicitor at Deighton Pierce Glynn and King’s College London’s Legal Clinic said:

“The scholarship was set up in memory of Stephen Knafler QC whose effective advocacy gave hope to the countless migrants, refugees and disabled people he represented. We are delighted that Brigesa has been accepted for the first award, which we hope will be one of many. The scholarship is funded by the Chambers where Stephen worked: Doughty Street Chambers, Garden Court Chambers and Landmark Chambers, as well as Anthony Gold Solicitors and lawyers with an interest in access to justice. For anyone wishing to donate for next year’s award please visit this weblink.”


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