What people say


"As judges, we rely on the advocates before us to be skilful, industrious and of the utmost integrity. We must make sure that all who have the right skills are able to find a place in the legal professions, and, if they excel, in due course in the judiciary. I therefore wholeheartedly support the mission of the Kalisher Trust and encourage all who care about access to justice and equality before the law to do the same".

Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd

Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales

"I am indebted to The Kalisher Trust for its invaluable insight into some of the skills and techniques I will be required to refine throughout my career at the Bar."

Danielle Manson

Pupil Barrister

25 Bedford Row

“It is vital to recruit talented and able young lawyers from every social background so that the profession, and ultimately the judiciary, reflects the diversity of the society it serves. I was a great admirer of Michael Kalisher and I warmly support the continuing work of the Trust.”

The Rt. Hon. Lord Judge

Former Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales

“We are delighted that the Kalisher Trust would like to offer Kitan Ososami the first Kalisher QMUL Scholarship, thank you for this fantastic support.”

Sarah McMinn

Associate Director of Development | Development and Alumni Directorate

Queen Mary, University of London

“It is an incredibly worthwhile learning programme for students in many different and challenging ways. You can visibly see them grow in confidence from the experience”.

Principal

Bradley Stoke Community School

“The whole experience has boosted my confidence and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Although before I wanted to pursue a law career, it has increased my desire and made me more determined to do so”.

Pupil

Skegness Grammar School

“I was enormously pleased to be awarded the internship and had not appreciated just how much I would gain from it. I cannot thank the Trust enough for allowing me this opportunity. My role included providing advice on a case by case basis about the strength of the evidence, potential charges and what further enquiries might be required. In order to undertake the internship I moved temporarily from Sheffield to London. The people I worked with made me feel welcome and at home, and I had the full support of the Trust. I developed excellent working relationships with the officers at IFED which I am sure will continue throughout my career at the Bar”.

Kate Plummer

Intern

City of London Police Insurance Fraud Department

“It was a life-changing experience and Kalisher is a brilliant Trust enabling teenagers who might not be able to have the opportunity to meet top barristers and Judges and learn from them. I have learnt that I can achieve anything and use the skills of a lawyer - or a person in court - to excel in my future”.

Written by a 6th form pupil

“When I was given an award I was stunned. Not only was the money a huge help to me (it enabled me to pay off a good chunk of the debt I had taken on to pay for my Bar course) but it gave me a much-needed confidence boost. It showed me that I did have ‘promise in a career at the criminal Bar’, and that I had as much chance as anyone of securing pupillage. Knowing that the panel saw a future for me at the Bar enabled me to be determined in carving that future out for myself. I think the work of the Trust is so essential that, now I am a tenant, I am Secretary to the Trust so that I can help to ‘give back’ to the institution that helped me so much.”

Merry Van Woodenberg (former Kalisher Scholar)

Tenant

Foundry Chambers

“I have, on a number of occasions, compared my time as a Kalisher Intern to studying for a Masters in Criminal Law. In 6 months I learned more about criminal law and the justice system than I thought was possible. Through Kalisher, I was taught by some of the best in the criminal justice system.”

Grace Flynn

Barrister

Former intern at the CCRC

“I have received several glowing tributes from students who attended, and from our Deputy Director of Post 16, saying that the whole experience was exciting, challenging and inspiring”.

Principal

Bradley Stoke Community School

“My sincere thanks to the fantastic people you brought up to Walsall Academy last week. The students and staff thoroughly enjoyed the experience, as did I! It is a really fantastic thing that you do to promote the legal profession to students that would never get these experiences.”

Principal

Walsall Academy

"Wadham College is delighted to have joined with the Oxford Centre for Criminology in creating the Wadham Kalisher Scholarship to support outstanding young graduate students planning a career at the Criminal Bar."

Lord MacDonald of River Glaven Kt QC

Warden of Wadham College, and former Director of Public Prosecutions

"The guidance from yourself and the trustees has substantially improved my confidence to present and form a concise argument, and I feel this has been an invaluable experience."

Secondary school pupil

“The quality of the experience was amazing. The barristers and everybody were helpful and friendly. I’d just like to thank everybody for making this opportunity possible.”

Pupil – Madeley Academy

“I have been inspired to grasp at my dream of being a lawyer”.

Pupil

Thomas Telford School

"Every single student identified the event as one of the best experiences she’d had at school, several students now want to make a career in Law (a few at the Bar) and all felt more confident in speaking as they are better equipped to construct an argument. Thank you so much for all that you did in making this such a special, unforgettable day for our girls."

Head

Hornsey School for Girls

"I am now considering a career in law, as possibly a barrister or a solicitor. The inspirational words from the barristers and QC judges changed my life forever."

Secondary school pupil

“As a child you learn what fairness is when you first suffer unfairness. As an Amicus intern you learn what justice is when you see and fight injustice. This is a life defining experience”.

Max Hardy

Kalisher Trustee and former AMICUS intern in New Orleans

“Studying criminology at Oxford provides a great route for students wishing to move into criminal law practice. The Centre for Criminology is committed to widening participation in academia and the law, and is immensely grateful to the Kalisher Trust and Wadham College for funding this scholarship”.

Professor Carolyn Hoyle

Professor of Criminology

Centre for Criminology

“Both the Kalisher Trust and JUSTICE took a gamble in awarding the opportunity to a student with a Masters in criminal justice rather than the BPTC, but the experience has proved invaluable in informing my career path, as the criminal Bar is no light choice. The hands-on policy work provided an excellent basis on which to build a legal career. I’m hugely grateful to the Kalisher Trust for funding my internship at JUSTICE, and everyone involved in facilitating it – I wouldn’t have been able to do it otherwise”.

Naomi-Ellen Speechley

Intern at JUSTICE 2013-2014

“The best and brightest must be recruited, from every background, and from the widest possible talent pool, irrespective of social status. I believe this with my head and heart”.

Martin Shaw

Actor and Bencher of Gray’s Inn

“Thank you for a truly exceptional day (and an experience that will live long in the memory of both students and staff). The surroundings are impressive in themselves, but for the young people to have the opportunity to access and interact with professionals at the leading edge of their profession is truly inspirational”.

Head Teacher

Skegness Grammar School

“To watch our pupils – nervous, self-conscious and often shy – strut onto the stage and perform with gusto, after only a few sessions, is almost heart stopping”.

Katherine Cocker-Goring

Deputy Head

Barnes Wallace Academy

“Well done for putting on such a worthwhile activity – I’m sure that many of those young people will look back on today as something really special in their school lives”.

Professor Diane Birch

Nottingham Law Faculty

“They had an excellent retention of what had happened, with a very good understanding of the process, and they were able to relate it to the real life court situation. Also their questions and thinking were on a deep level. Their comments were most illuminating. One has told us that it has reinforced her desire to take up this sort of career. Another set of parents has emailed me and told me that their son talked all about it and doesn’t usually talk about school at home”.

Kay Gerrett

Principal

Cedar Road School

“One of them has also said that it helped them to develop their thinking. Some of them talk about Judge Rinder and have started to watch this.  The year 3 class teacher said that she loved it and would like to be involved more next year”.

Head

Northampton Primary School

“One of the girls pertinently observed: It makes you realise that if you start to lie it can get difficult to keep it all going. There was much discussion as to WHY the little details are so important when trying to establish the truth from two differing perspectives”.

Head

London preparatory school

"It was a pleasure working with you and we were also very grateful to your many wonderful colleagues for giving up their time."

Outreach Officer (Post-16 Engagement)

"This was a real team effort and everyone pulled together to ensure the pupils had an excellent experience. Looking forward to working with you again in the future."

Head of Outreach and Widening Participation

“A big thank you to all of you for organising this amazing event for me and the other students that attended. It was an unique experience and probably also a life time experience! The event was very well organised and was full of activities that will remain with me for ever… This is definitely the best event that I have ever attended and it would not have been this good if you had not put a lot of effort in it.”

A pupil

Skegness Grammar School

“A massive thank you. We had a great time and a fantastic experience.  The pupils have been smiling all day".

Deputy Head

Thomas Middlecott Academy

“We are writing to you to express our gratitude for the exceptional experience you were able to give us on 14 April… you and your team were very welcoming… Going into one court room and being split into different groups gave us the opportunity to make new acquaintances and gave us the confidence to speak publicly. Following from this we were able to speak with barristers and learn about how we can have a career in law. We were also able to learn about their path to law. After speaking with the barristers we went to watch a live court case. The opportunity to do this was absolutely fascinating and a truly once in a life time opportunity.”

Four pupils

Secondary school in Lincolnshire

“Thanks to you and all the brilliant team involved in today's "Law Day Experience". It was fantastically organised. We were in awe of the whole experience. It was a day that captured all students and staff from beginning to end.”

Assistant Principal

Barnes Wallace

"Brilliant... I thoroughly enjoyed the inquiry sessions and working with the lawyers... I thought the day was great... my knowledge of how to apply to university and write a personal statement have improved as a result of this activity... having the student ambassadors there was great... it was really useful."

Extract from a school pupil evaluation form

“An invaluable experience… encouraging our students to adapt their delivery, with many making huge progress in a short space of time, discovering that leaving their comfort zone and speaking in front of people is hugely rewarding.”

Teaching staff

Quote taken from a confidential questionnaire after a Kalisher debating competition

“I enjoyed the oral interview, the wide variety of questions allowed me to express myself well. The written papers provided a variety of interesting topics and situations. The interview process was effective as it appears to have assessed a wide spectrum of skills and my personality in general, allowing me to convey myself well”.

Alexander Melnikov

Winner of the 2017 Old Bailey Apprentice Award

City of London Academy, Southwark

“You have made such an impact on my life. I now know something: law is the career for me. This week has motivated me so much to go after my dreams. I’ve learnt that although the road may be difficult, it is so worth it in the end”.

Victoria

6th Form Student

Academy Trust

“This has been a very exciting journey. You have taught me, most importantly, to follow my passion and to enjoy everything that the legal profession has to offer”.

Leah

6th Form Student

Academy Trust

“The Kalisher advocacy and presentation training course provided me with the time and the professional support to think about the non-verbal aspects of a pupillage interview. I am sure that the Kalisher course was what made my 2013 pupillage round successful and I am very grateful to the Kalisher Trust for helping me to begin my career at the Bar.”

Hayley Boot

Kalisher Alumni 2013

Formerly 1 KBW

“The Kalisher Scholarship was an amazing assistance to me in pursuing my dream of being a criminal barrister. I was able to enter pupillage, albeit still in considerable debt, but not immediately anxious about how to cover loan payments and the next set of monthly bills.  I can’t thank those who donate and those who work tirelessly fundraising for the Trust enough”.

Tim Naylor, Kalisher Scholar, 2010

Tenant

QEB Hollis Whiteman

“The benefits of this supreme accolade have been substantial. Firstly, in covering the costs of the Bar Vocational Course, the Kalisher Scholarship has significantly eased the financial burden I face now and that potential burden I face in the early years of my career. Secondly, the significant endorsement from the distinguished trustees that is encapsulated in such an eminent scholarship has further bolstered my conviction – and doubtlessly that of prospective Chambers – that now I am properly qualified to confidently succeed in a pupillage and beyond.”

William Hotham, Kalisher Scholar, 2009

Barrister

6 Pump Court

“I am hugely thankful for the invaluable assistance the Kalisher scholarship has given me.”

Tom Stevens, Kalisher Scholar 2008

Barrister

Doughty Street Chambers

“I was a grateful recipient of the Cloth Fair Scholarship in 2008.  I very much hope to be able to make a contribution of my own to the Kalisher Trust in the future.”

Deborah Smithies, Cloth Fair Scholar 2008

Barrister

KBW Chambers, Leeds

“As a proud member of the working class from the Welsh valleys communities, I had doubted whether I could ever have a career at the Bar. The scholarship opened doors, alleviated the inevitable financial strain and gave me the confidence to believe that I was welcome in a profession that is in reality both diverse and inclusive.”

Lucy Leader, Kalisher Scholar, 2002

Barrister

Angel Chambers, Swansea

“I am not quite sure how I would have survived without the Scholarship. I was very surprised to find that I had been successful and that I was to be presented with the award by the Lord Chief Justice at the Old Bailey.”

Andrew Sugarman, Kalisher Scholar 2001

Barrister

Parklane Plowden Chambers, Leeds

“Receiving the Kalisher Scholarship still ranks as one of the high points in my professional life. To be told, when you are on the verge of going to the bank, that you are going to be able to afford the cost of the Bar course without incurring further debt is very uplifting. I will always be thankful for the generosity of Michael Kalisher QC, those who administer the trust and those who donated to it.  Of course the greater danger is that only those who can afford to will apply. I hope that the encouragement and support that I was given will continue to be given to others”.

David Chidgey, Kalisher Scholar, 2000

Barrister

Albion Chambers, Bristol

“I loved watching the trial of Mr Bear with my daughter discussing topics surrounding peer pressure, intention, consequences of actions and other peoples sometimes hidden motivations for saying things. Entertaining and thought provoking - not an easy task for an 8 year old audience.”

The parent of an 8 year old pupil

“It was a brilliant opportunity. I felt very encouraged and involved and by the end I was very confident and enthusiastic about taking part and asking questions”.

Victoria

6th Form Student

Academy Trust

“We spoke in depth about the work you do and it’s a real inspiration because I hope to be a criminal barrister one day. I learnt how barristers face situations and the day really helped me to know that this is the career I dream about doing. I really enjoyed seeing practical application of the law and understanding why professionals come to the conclusion they do when faced with difficult situations”.

Leah

6th Form Student

Academy Trust

"The guidance from yourself and the trustees has substantially improved my confidence to present and form a concise argument, and I feel this has been an invaluable experience."

Secondary school pupil

Quote from a confidential questionnaire

“Thanks to Kalisher’s encouragement and boundless enthusiasm, our pupils have been given an opportunity that has been potentially life changing.”

Teaching staff

Quote taken from a confidential questionnaire after a Kalisher debating competition

“I have seen timid, shy students flourish and develop into articulate, confident young people...and finally find their voices, able to express their ideas and opinions in an informed and erudite way. Confidence has been built up with a mixture of humour, expertise and mutual respect; professional and approachable, the students warmed to them instantly. I would heartily recommend the programme to all. I have found the Kalisher Debating Programme has had an enormous impact (pupils) are now more confident, more willing to share their ideas and opinions and more critical as thinkers and learners.”

Teaching staff

Quote taken from a confidential questionnaire after a Kalisher debating competition

“It has been a pleasure to see our students grow in confidence and skill during the year. Their debating skills have been skilfully nurtured and challenged.”

Teaching staff

Quote taken from a confidential questionnaire after a Kalisher debating competition

“The competition has seen our young people grow in confidence, maturity and most of all aspiration. I would love to be able to produce the figures and statistics to quantify the impact on our young people. But I feel it is in the heat of a job interview or elsewhere in the bright futures of our young people that the real rewards will be shown.”

Teaching staff

Quote taken from a confidential questionnaire after a Kalisher debating competition