Meet: Shantel – Student of the 2021 MLB program

Shantel West is one of the new master students this year. She told us about her career in Jamaica and why she chose the Bucerius Law School for her MLB.

Dear Shantel, from which country did you come to Bucerius Law School?

I am from Jamaica.

What was your experience coming to Hamburg for the first time? What impression did you gain of the city?

Hamburg is a beautiful city. The trains and buses run on time, it’s a melting pot of different people and culture. Since my arrival, I tried different international tastes such as Turkish, Vietnamese or Chinese food. And the great thing is that there are even a lot more that I have not yet explored. Besides all that, I experienced that the people are generally very accommodating and helpful. Actually, a lot of them are English speakers as well.

Why did you decide to study Law?

My decision to study Law initially came from doing Law as an elective in 12th and 13th grade. I thoroughly enjoyed reading the cases and what I especially liked was studying the judgements. For me, it was always fascinating to read the judges thoughts and opinions about a certain case and to see how they arrived at a final decision.

What was your job in Jamaica before moving to Hamburg?

I was a lawyer in my own legal practice.

What made you choose to practice real estate law?

The real estate industry in Jamaica is a booming one, and it’s one of those areas of law where there are more satisfactions that disappointments. The nice fact about it, is that I even get to share in that satisfaction. It also doesn’t hurt that it is a very lucrative industry for lawyers as well.

You are active in charitable work, for example registering land for economically challenged clients. Why is this important to you?

Well, I am from a very humble beginnings and I have seen by myself where help along the way can really make a difference in peoples’ life. In my country the poorer people often tend to not being able to afford a lawyer. That’s why I decided to assist people with the registration of unregistered land as a means of helping people to increase the value in the land that they own. Thereby they have the chance to increase their net worth.

Why did you decide to get an MLB? How do you think having an MLB is going to help you pursue your career goals?

When I decided to further my studies, I had a bias towards going to Germany because I was already trying to learn German. During my research, I was looking for either an MBA or an LLM. I was really surprised about noticing that the Bucerius Law School is offering a combination of both worlds. This was perfect for me.

I believe that the combination of law and business will help me tremendously to improve my business practices as an entrepreneur and also in being more knowledgeable in international law.

What made you choose Bucerius Law School specifically to pursue an MLB?

Since I have had my own legal practice in Jamaica, I wanted to gain the knowledge and expertise to expand my firm. That’s why I thought that a master degree in Business or Law would be perfect for me. When I came across the Bucerius Law School master programmes combing Business and Law, I was very excited. The fact that this university has been continuously ranked as the number one law school in the country clearly also made my decision a lot easier.

Shantel, thanks for the interview.

Author

Florian Helwich, Valeria Veneziano, Arne Lemke

Hamburg