Julia Vetter has been an online student studying the iGDL since 2017. As Manager of Commercial Agreements for dnata Travel (part of the Emirates Group), she wanted to expand her legal knowledge while balancing a full-time job and the responsibilities of being a single parent. We caught up with Julia to discuss how studying online with ULaw has allowed her to further her education.
I felt that studying law would complement my MBA; adding significant in-depth academic knowledge to my commercial experience and creating the specialised expertise that I require in my current role. I have always been passionate about travel and have been intrigued by its professional facets from an early age. I consider myself exceptionally fortunate to have been given the chance to develop my career across multiple verticals of this dynamic, colourful and at times glamorous and emotional industry.
My current role aims to improve dnata Travel’s position in contractual commitments by critically reviewing and analysing new and existing agreements from multiple perspectives. As well as this I explore and discuss alternative approaches and opportunities with the commercial teams to benefit from synergy effects and support efficiency. I work in an international environment with partners in countless jurisdictions and the English law is very often a suitable compromise and base to develop cooperation.
My career started only a few days prior to boarding a plane to New Zealand for a trip around the world as a gap year jolly after school, when the offer to start a 3-year management trainee program with Sixt Rent a Car fell into my lap. That offer was too good to refuse as it allowed me to study while working as a permanent team member, gain my first professional experience and build the foundation for the professional path that followed from there.
The inspiration to embark on the challenge of studying law – on top of my already sufficiently busy life as a single mum who is working full-time – was derived from witnessing very successful colleagues who attended programs at The University of Law. They made what seemed impossible, appear actually achievable.
My proudest achievements are those in my personal life, but I am honoured that I can look back on having led my teams successfully through challenging circumstances on several occasions, whilst achieving notable commercial results.
A typical day starts with lots of giggling and singing with my daughter, followed by a day in the office with a marvellous view over Dubai, full of reviewing the contracts, discussing backgrounds with the commercial teams and participating in their negotiations. It ends with an extensive catch up over the events in the world of a 3-year-old during dinner and some long study nights after reading our bedtime stories.
The University of Law is giving me the academic background to my role that allows me to steer my career into a specialised niche, whilst widening my overall perspective and professional prospects at the same time. Apart from gaining fundamentally important academic knowledge that I apply daily, the iGDL programme has substantially changed my approach to solving tasks and encouraged a more analytical and precise way of thinking.
My life is centred here in Dubai, hence it would be very difficult to attend a campus abroad. My full-time job further limits the time I have available to follow fixed schedules. The flexibility to study and work on tasks in my own time, which the course enables me to do, is absolutely key in my personal situation.
I’d advise anyone looking to study and already working full-time, to be clear about how much time this course will demand from your evenings/weekends. Make sure you have the support of the people around you (family, colleagues). You’ll need them to be your support network.