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I envision using my legal knowledge and skills to help individuals and organizations navigate complex legal issues- Mariam Adejumoke Oyede

With an unwavering vision for her future, she aims to ascend to the ranks of an international corporate taxation lawyer, a distinguished Professor of Taxation law, and a revered Senior Advocate of Nigeria.
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From her dynamic undergraduate years brimming with competitions, volunteering, and tutoring to her diverse internships in private firms and government institutions, Mariam, a first-class law graduate from the Nigerian Law School, has wholeheartedly embraced every opportunity to immerse herself in the intricate world of law. With an unwavering vision for her future, she aims to ascend to the ranks of an international corporate taxation lawyer, a distinguished professor of taxation law, and a revered senior advocate of Nigeria. For Mariam, the Lagos State University law library is one of the best law libraries in Nigeria, providing her with a serene and focused environment where she could descend into her textbooks, research materials, and online resources for additional reference materials. Excerpts

What motivated you to pursue a degree in law?

I’ve always been fascinated by the world of law and how it shapes society. I believe that studying law allows me to make a positive impact in the world, as well as help people navigate through complex legal issues. It is a multifaceted field that combines critical thinking, analysis, writing, and advocacy, and I enjoy the challenge of analysing cases, researching legal principles, and providing solutions. Additionally, the legal profession commands respect and admiration, and I find great satisfaction in these.

What was your undergraduate experience like?

Oh, my undergraduate experience was quite eventful! I participated in competitions, volunteering, training, and tutoring, and I assisted in organising programs both virtual and physical. Eventually, I got appointed as a judge in my final year. The journey provided the opportunity to meet amazing people and explore different courses. It was a time of growth and self-discovery. I enjoyed the mix of academics, extracurricular activities, and forming lifelong friendships. There were moments of stress and hard work, but overall, it was like a roller coaster ride. I learned so much, not just from textbooks but also from the experiences and conversations I had with my peers and lecturers. It laid a solid foundation for my future self and career.

Were there any courses that you found particularly challenging?

Oh, absolutely! There were a few courses that pushed me out of my comfort zone. One that comes to mind is Jurisprudence and Islamic Law of Jurisprudence. They are complex subjects with lots of intricate details to analyze and comprehend. Understanding the nuances of the law and interpreting jurisprudential principles was quite challenging, but also incredibly fascinating. It required a lot of critical thinking and attention to detail. However, with hard work and the support of my classmates and lecturers, I was able to navigate through it successfully. It was a rewarding feeling!
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Did you use the library for studying?

Yes, I used the library during my undergraduate period. It was my go-to spot for studying during my university years. The Lagos State University Law Library is one of the best law libraries in Nigeria. It’s a serene and focused environment where students can dive into my textbooks, research materials, and online resources for additional reference materials. The library played a big role in helping me succeed academically.

What significant challenges did you encounter during your study?

During my study, I encountered a few significant challenges. One of the main ones was finding a balance between academics and other aspects of my life. It can be tough to juggle coursework, extracurricular activities, and personal commitments. Sometimes, I felt overwhelmed and struggled with time management. However, I learned to prioritise, set realistic goals, and ask for help when needed. Another challenge was dealing with the pressure of exams and assignments. It’s natural to feel stressed, but I had to develop effective study strategies and coping mechanisms to stay focused and perform well. Overall, these challenges helped me grow and develop important skills that have been valuable beyond my studies.

Did you participate in any internship during your study?

Yes, I did participate in internships during my studies. I interned in four
(4) private firms and the Lagos State Ministry of Justice. I also did a United Kingdom virtual internship in 2020, during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Those internships allowed me to work closely with experienced lawyers and get a taste of the legal profession outside the four walls of the classroom. As an intern, i gained valuable experiences that helped me develop my skills, understand legal drafting, build professional connections, and confirm my passion for pursuing a career in law.

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Did you win any scholarships for your studies?

Yes, I was a recipient of the Lagos State Scholarship for undergraduates.

Do you have any plans to take other professional certification exams in your field?

Oh, absolutely! I believe in the importance of continuous learning and professional growth. In the field of law, there are various professional certification exams that I’m considering taking in the future, aside from my recently concluded BL certificate. I believe these certifications can enhance my expertise and open up new prospects in my career.

Do you have any role models you look up to?

I do not consciously seek out or identify with specific individuals as my role models because I believe in the uniqueness of everyone’s career choices. However, I have mentors in various fields of the legal profession whom I reach out to regularly for guidance and they have been really supportive and intentional about my career prospects.

What are your long-term career goals?

My long-term career goal is to become an international corporate taxation lawyer, a renowned Professor of Taxation law, and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.

How do you envision applying your knowledge to real-world challenges?

I envision using my legal knowledge and skills to help individuals and organisations navigate complex legal issues. Providing solutions to problems, either by providing legal advice, aiding tax planning, ensuring regulatory compliance, assessing risks and providing analytical advice, or representing clients. I am positive that I will make a positive impact by contributing to a more just society.
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After your bachelor’s degree, what next?

Well, after my bachelor’s degree, the next step for me is to complete the one-year program at the Nigerian Law School, which I completed last year, 2023. I intend to acquire a master’s degree in the law of taxation, very soon. I believe it’s an exciting journey that will further develop my skills and knowledge in the field of law and also carve a niche for myself.

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