Bolton School Senior Boys

Old Boy Gives Insight into Legal Careers

Old Boy Mike Shaw returned to Bolton School today to give Boys’ and Girls’ Division pupils from Years 10 to 13 an insight into a career in Law. Mike has a long-standing relationship with the school: his father, David Shaw, was a member of the Boys' Division teaching staff 1964 - 2002, became the Deputy Headmaster of the Boys’ Division, and also acted as the Old Boys' Liaison Officer.

Mike himself was a Boys' Division pupil from 1981 to 1988. After leaving Bolton School, he went to Brasenose College in Oxford where he obtained a Law degree. He then went on to York College of Law before moving to work in London. He is now a partner with the law firm Squire Sanders; he deals with commercial real-estate across the globe, from offices and factories to hospitals and schools, and is a specialist in his field.

The talk began with a general overview of what a career in law means. Mike explained the difference between the work of a solicitor and that of a barrister before discussing the commercial world in which he operates. He contrasted this to more ‘high-street’ or small-scale legal practice. He also pointed that there are distinct types of legal careers available depending on the part of the country and the area solicitors and barristers work in: a legal career in Bolton, or even in Manchester, will be vastly different to one based in London, for example.

He also offered pupils some hints and tips for applications and interviews, either to Law degrees or to jobs in the legal profession. He explained the importance of developing their skills and how to go about obtaining good experience early on, as these factors can make a huge difference to an application.

This was a great talk for those students interested in pursuing a career in Law in the future, full of invaluable advice for how to prepare themselves for university and beyond.

Mike briefly spoke about his own career towards the end and described some of the cases he has been involved with. He told one story which highlighted just how far-reaching Bolton School’s alumni community has become: he was working on a project for a client based in Dubai, and the solicitor acting for the client was a fellow Old Boy of Bolton School!

Mike Shaw with two of the pupils who attended the talk

Mike Shaw with two of the pupils who attended the talk