Erin McAlpine - College of Social Sciences & International Studies


My name is Erin and I am from a little village in South Wales where I live with my Dad and step-Mum, I am also the first in my family to attend university. I attended college in one of the poorest areas in Wales and feel extremely accomplished to be able to come to such an outstanding university.

Law is something I have been interested in since attending a college open day in year 9 of secondary school, regardless of the challenges I faced I was determined to get the grades needed to be able to progress onto degree level.

So far my course has been extremely interesting, challenging but I have been able to engage successfully with motivation and excitement going forward. I hope to be able to not only study the law but improve my skills to make me increasingly more employable over the time I am here at Exeter.

I am ever so thankful for your support, it has really put my mind at ease regarding financial worries and it will surely make a difference to my studies while I'm here at Exeter. Instead of having the worries surrounding a part-time job and managing my finances, I now get to put this effort towards my studies and feel assured that I can support myself.

I look forward to keeping you updated on my undoubtfully successful progress and displaying my enthusiasm for being at university and studying law. I am also excited to show my gratitude.

Yours thankfully,


Erin McAlpine

Sir Steve Smith Scholar

Profile - Erin McAlpine

Why did you chose to come to the University of Exeter?

Over the summer before starting my UCAS journey I completed the Exeter Scholars online residential; this gave me insight into what university study was like but more specifically what studying at the University of Exeter would be like. With further research into university's while choosing where to apply, Exeter stood out to me for many reasons. As well as the successes of the University being shown in league tables, they had a range of societies and amazing well-being support - it really struck me as a student orientated university.

Why have you selected your chosen subject of study?

Studying LLB Law is a process that molds you into a critical thinker and makes you employable in a range of sectors. This was something that appealed to me as I wanted to be ready to go into a good career as soon as possible after leaving university. The course is also extremely challenging which is what I was seeking. Although, the staff are amazing at explaining topics and being there for students when we have any questions about the course.

What career aspirations do you have?

The great thing about having a law degree is that you become very employable and not just in the conventional law related jobs that people usually consider when thinking about law graduates. I am open to all job prospects, although a goal of mine is to work in a firm that is part of the magic circle, where I can progress and have a really successful career for life.

What will you be doing outside of study?

I have joined the University of Exeter Law Society as it will really assist with my studies. Aside from this, I have joined the LGBT society as it represents something important to me but is also a way to be a part of something that is recreational and separate from my studies.

What does this scholarship mean to you and how will it impact your time at Exeter and beyond?

Coming from a disadvantaged background and facing many hurdles through my life that have impacted my education, this scholarship gives me the reassurance that I am supported during my time at Exeter. Instead of worrying about financial difficulty or getting a job with lots of hours, I can devote more time to my studies which will enhance my understanding directly benefiting my marks.