Law student Saeed Abdool Hamid is steadily advancing on his path to becoming an agent of social change, as he pursues a Masters in International Human Rights Law at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, after graduating with high honours from the Hugh Wooding Law School earlier this month.
Abdool graduated from Hugh Wooding on October 7, and was the recipient of several awards to commemorate his model performance at the institute, including The Book Specialist Prize, to mark Best Overall Performance in Academic and Extra-Curricular Activities (the prize was said to have been shared with George Charlemagne); the Justice Ronnie Boodoosingh Prize for Best Performance in the Human Rights Law Clinic; and the Guyana Prize for the Best Overall Performance by a student from Guyana.
He has already embarked on his Master’s programme, which concludes in August of next year.
“…my intention is to return home to Guyana and make a difference. They say lawyers are social agents of change and I intend to take full control of that capacity. Whether it is through litigation at first, the criminal justice system, or even the United Nations, I will be happy working where ever I can achieve the objective,” Hamid said of his future plans, adding that he would be “equally happy” to work in the capacity of a lecturer at the University of Guyana “when the time comes”.
According to a release from the University of Guyana (UG), from which Hamid graduated in 2015, Hamid, in his parting comments advised students that with the right drive, one can excel regardless of how difficult the task at hand is.
He noted that he was able to maintain his performance regardless of the fact that he wore many hats during his time spent at the law school, including President of the Human Rights Committee, Public Relations Officer of the Student Representative Council and member of the Gavel Newsletter editorial team.
“If there is anything I hope persons take from my experience is that the LEC programme is difficult, but with a passion for learning, the right mindset and support system, you can excel.
It is important to have a well-rounded experience and to never let an opportunity escape your grasp,” he stated.
But he noted too that having a balance between studies and leisure is also a necessary requirement, and “failing to prepare is preparing to fail”.
“Rigorous study schedules and limiting distractions are very important as well, but I’m not going to pretend that I studied continuously. It is important to have a balance between your studies and your leisure time. It’s also important to remember your family and friends are supporting you and not to lose sight of your goals, especially when you are studying abroad,” Hamid further related.
He thanked his family, friends, and classmates, who he said provided “much needed support, encouragement and meals” and without whom he would not be where he is today.
Hamid’s father, Shaheed Hamid, Manager of Regent Household and Electronics, expressed how pleased he was with his son’s performance, as he had made his family and the University “extremely proud of his remarkable achievement”. The senior Hamid, the release stated, acknowledged the role that UG had played in his son’s foundation knowledge which led to his later success at Hugh Wooding, and thanked those who would have supported him during his tenure in Trinidad.
Young Hamid also extended his gratitude to those educators who supported him on the rigorous journey, thanking lecturers who would have impacted him along the way, both at UG and Hugh Wooding.
In this vein, he urged law students to heed their lecturers’ advice, noting that learning is “trial and error” and consequently, the more effort that is made, the easier it will be to succeed.
“Having studied under the tutelage of some of the greatest legal minds in the region at the University of Guyana, including Professor Duke Pollard, Professor Keith Massiah and the late, Mr Sheldon McDonald, I graduated from UG understanding what it takes to be a good law student and what it will take to be an even better legal advocate,” Hamid said,
“Similarly, at the HWLS there was no shortage of excellent tutors, including but not limited to Mr Rudranath Maharaj, Ms Nisha Mathura-Allahar, Mr Jason Nathu, and Ms Alana Jameson; all of whom have shown a genuine interest in the wellbeing of students and never once allowed you to feel overwhelmed by the immense workload,” he further stated.