Interviewed by Editor- In- Chief Alexandra Cook
A little bit about Yusur:
"Hi there! My name is Yusur Dalloul and I am currently completing my Masters in Human Rights Law at Queen’s University Belfast(QUB) and the founder and leader of The Law Space. I also previously completed my Bachelor’s degree in Law at QUB. The reason I chose law as my preferred pathway is due to the passion I have for finding solutions and negotiating my way through a given conflict and dispute, where both sides of the conflict gain a beneficial result.
This passion had led me to become interested in Alternative Dispute Resolution throughout my university years, where I gained experience in mediation, negotiation, and teamwork. I additionally realized another passion of mine that I have had since I was very young, which is volunteering, where I had the privilege to do so in several countries such as Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Nepal, South Africa, and Ireland. Hence the reason why I was interested in pursuing a Master’s degree that would help me further understand the causes and interests I had, and potentially apply it in the legal and professional sense. However, I do intend to pursue the corporate legal field as my main career choice, while maintaining my passion for human rights.
The Law Space is an initiative that I set out for all individuals pursuing Law or who would like to pursue law to hear from experts in several fields of law, regarding skill building, their journeys, and top advice in advancing your legal studies and career. I aim for this to be a support group to all individuals and ages in law, to learn from each other, and grow."
Alex: Where did the idea for the Law Space come from?
Yusur: So, the idea came along during COVID-19 actually! I had seen many students struggling throughout their degrees, including myself due to the lack of resources that were available, and that would regularly have been in place if it were not for the Pandemic. Knowing that when someone else is also on the same boat, it can make matters seem much easier than we can make them out to be, as we’re not alone, and that help can always be found.
So, I thought about what had previously helped me in the past when I sought out support, especially as an international student that had moved thousands of miles away from family and friends, to pursue a degree I was passionate about, and it was usually panel talks from experts I looked up to or had not known at all, skill-building workshops to make myself a better person everyday both personally and professionally, Lean In circles to hear from others in a field that I have an interest in and that helped me become the person that I am today, and am still becoming, growing, and learning. This is why I highly encourage anyone at the beginning of their legal education or career, to never say no to an opportunity where you feel like you can gain a lesson from, no matter how small it might be.
Alex: What are your goals for The Law Space? Where do you see it in 2 years?
Yusur: I have a lot planned for it fortunately, but it would not be exciting if I were to reveal what’s coming next!
Alex: Is it just you managing The Law Space right now or do you have a team behind you. If not, do you plan on starting a team at any point?
Yusur: It’s all me! From contacting the speakers, to responding to messages, and posting on our social media platforms on Instagram and LinkedIn. It’s all very easy to do on my own when I put the time aside for it, and dedicate the efforts. Therefore, it is doable managing it all on my own. However, a team is something I would highly consider when The Law Space grows, whether it is anytime soon, or later on in the future. Beautiful things take time.
Alex: Why was Instagram your chosen method of launch?
Yusur: My main target audience were those who are particularly young in their legal degrees, or had just started a legal job as a young professional. However, the Law Space aims to serve individuals of ALL ages, and is mainly based between the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates. But all attendees are welcome, no matter where you are in the world.
Alex: Who are your biggest inspirations in the legal world and why?
Yusur: I wouldn’t necessarily say that my biggest inspirations were legal figures. My true biggest inspirations are my parents. They are the sole reason for being where, and who I am today, and I could not be more thankful for them nor could have done it without them and their guidance. I owe everything to them and the rest of my family and my sisters. They are all so inspirational, hardworking, driven, and loyal in what they do.
But since we’re speaking about the legal field, I do not think this should come as a surprise that I find Amal Alamuddin a wonderful barrister to look up to for the work she has taken on in the human rights field. Since my roots are Palestinian, and that I hold Lebanese nationality, it is wonderful to see another woman from the same background that has made it so far. Her work gives me the motivation to never give up, remain disciplined, and always work hard. I also really admire the late Polly Higgins for her passion towards environmental law, and her advancements in criminalizing environmental harm.
Alex: If you could tell your 1st year self studying law one thing, what would it be and why?
Yusur: Today, I am so happy and thankful with every choice I have made whether good or bad, as that is what led me to where I am standing now. The decisions of my past were made with the pieces of knowledge and information I had at the time, and this led me to grab opportunities and continually say yes to experiences that I know was going to benefit me at that given time, whether it was a work placement in the summer, a volunteer trip, or a role within a society. The biggest piece of advice and rule that I have always lived by particularly during my first year and will continue to do so, is to always be yourself. You as an individual are so rare, and that is what any firm would look for. They like to see what stands out from your end, and how you are different from others. Always be yourself.
Alex: What has been the most rewarding experience throughout your legal studies thus far?
Yusur: Most rewarding experience so far has been my involvement within The Law Society. What led me to run for Head of Charity within the society was knowing that I would have the skills to do so given my volunteering and teamwork experience in the past, specifically participating in the Human Rights and Social Justice trip to Cape Town, South Africa that was held the summer before I took on the role. That trip, given it was only 2 weeks of my time, was time well-spent. I learned so much as a student of law, and became even more passionate about human rights. This gave me the confidence in my role as Head of Charity, as I was elected, and planned wonderful events throughout the academic year of 2019-2020, such as the Annual Christmas Charity Gala in support of the Children’s Law Centre in Northern Ireland at Belfast Castle and the Law Ball in support of Groundwork Northern Ireland.
Alex: If you could have any person in the world feature on a panel for a Law Space discussion, who would it be and why?
Yusur: If there is one person I admire greatly, and would want to speak to her for The Law Space, it is Queen Rania of Jordan, a beautiful country I called my second home during the summertime. As a woman, mother, leader, and queen, she has committed her time to several projects nationally and internationally. On the national scale, she gives her time towards public education, women empowerment within their communities, and improving child and family protection services. She also encourages innovation, technology, and entrepreneurship throughout society, particularly amongst young individuals – these are fields I cover during my LLM in Human Rights Law course and therefore, it is a great passion of mine to work towards public development.
On the international scale, Queen Rania advocates for tolerance, compassion, and promoting empathy between individuals of all cultures and background – which is a value I believe in so strongly. She puts in the efforts to challenge the stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims and to promote greater understanding and clarification in accepting people of all faiths and cultures.
Alex: Do you plan on expansion or is The Law Space going to remain solely on Instagram for now?
Yusur: I have just set up a LinkedIn page for The Law Space as well. This way we can connect strongly to the legal world by being in touch with those who are either studying/working in the legal field, and are active on LinkedIn as a professional platform for The Law Space.
The Verdict would like to thank Yusur for her time during this interview. The Law Space social media pages can be found through the handle and link below: