Mature student beats cancer and looks forward to training contract glory

One Legal Practice Course (LPC) student has battled through cancer, juggled a full-time job and cared for her daughter in a bid to realise her dreams of becoming a fully qualified solicitor.

Caroline Harvey, who is currently a trainee solicitor at Russell Jones & Walker, has been able to study her law degree at Buckingham University, take her LPC at the College of Law and keep on top of her training contract after surviving breast cancer.

The mother-of-one said: “I started my law degree and then found out I had got breast cancer. Most people said that I should give up the study because it was too much to be a mum, have a full-time job, study and go through cancer treatment but I carried on because I thought it would be awful to be alive and not have qualified because I would have felt that I had failed myself.”

Harvey has spent the last six years studying after work and at weekends to qualify, sacrificing holidays and time with her family to achieve her goal.

She started her working career in hotel management but 20 years ago decided to give it all up to spend more time with her husband.

“I got bored, so I started doing some odd bits and pieces for a friend who was a solicitor. It went from that to working in other law firms but never being qualified made me want to qualify,” she said.

Despite being struck down with toxemia two days before an exam as well as pneumonia due to her cancer treatment, Harvey still managed to achieve a high 2:1 in her law degree and is now looking forward to completing her training contract in February next year.

“It just shows you that if you have the determination and the will you can do anything,” she added.