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Photo of Aufa Karnalkar


Course studied: LLM International Trade and Commercial Law

The Global Lounge was a great place to meet people and hang out. I remember playing table football there and having free lunch on Tuesdays.

More about Aufa

Aufa is an international student from India and studied LLM International Trade and Commercial Law, graduating in 2019. The Covid-19 pandemic forced her to re-think her career after losing her dream job in Shipping Law at a leading law firm in India. Aufa is thriving as a freelance lawyer and academic law tutor and we caught up with her to discover her experience as an international student at NTU.

Why did you choose to study at NTU?

I liked the course structure of the Masters study at NTU. I had received an international student scholarship and this was one of the main reasons why I opted to study at NTU.

I found Nottingham to be a very student-friendly city with many budget options for everything from food to accommodation compared to the other big cities like London or Leeds.

NTU also has a good ranking in terms of employability and I had heard from the alumni that the University is helpful in assisting students to find internships and job placements. NTU hosts job fairs which is a great platform to network with recruiters.

I loved the campus too. I loved studying at the roof terrace of Boots library!

What did you learn – both inside and outside of lectures?

I learnt a lot from my professors. The teaching methodology was very different from what I was accustomed to in India. The professors were highly learned yet very humble and accommodated all students. They were truly inspiring.

The Global Lounge was a great place to meet people and hang out. I remember playing table football there and having free lunch on Tuesdays.

What extra-curricular activities did you take part in?

I was a faith ambassador for NTU. NTU works towards promoting inter-faith friendships and eliminating cultural or religious hate of any kind. As part of my work, I along with other faith ambassadors visited several religious places such as temples, churches and met people of different faiths and promoted religious harmony.

What does your current role involve?

I am a freelance law researcher and tutor. I am a visiting lecturer for a university in Mumbai and apart from teaching in university, I create law courses on online learning platforms like Udemy.

What attracted you to this field of work?

Teaching is a noble profession. I love teaching because it develops a habit of reading and updating your knowledge every day.

What challenges have you faced?

The Covid-19 pandemic has drastically changed the work culture in India. I graduated just months before the outbreak of the pandemic. I had secured my dream job but lost it due to the pandemic and then later struggled to find a suitable job despite achieving a distinction and having great work experience prior to my LLM. Despite doing everything I could, life after graduation wasn’t as I expected it to be. This was a major setback. The only way I could overcome it was by being patient.

I was afraid that I might lose interest and become out of touch with Law and so I made it a habit to read at least something related to my subject on a daily basis. I utilised my time by writing articles and one day, to my surprise, I got a job offer as a visiting professor from a university in Mumbai where I had applied a year ago. I started taking online lectures for the university (lectures were conducted online due to the pandemic). I loved my job. Out of all the jobs that I did previously, I found the teaching job to be highly satisfying.

This opportunity made me realise my potential for teaching. I continue to teach and aspire to write law books.

I started creating law courses in my area of specialisation (International Trade and Commercial Law) on online learning platforms and in less than a month, more than 1000 students enrolled for my courses and this number continues to grow every day.

What are your plans for the future?

As I aim to grow my career in academia, my ambition is to be a renowned Law author one day.

Finally, is there anything else you’d like to share?

Life at university is not just about learning from books. The experience will teach you many things and transform you into a better person. Having studied at NTU I met people from different backgrounds and different phases of life, I learnt something from everyone I met and this has made me a better person today.

Read Aufa's LinkedIn profile.

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