Science student finds her calling in law; sets sight on human rights cases


By Vishani Ragobeer

Thalia Thompson, a 26-year-old attorney-at-law, spent a few years studying the sciences while she attended the Bishops’ High School in Georgetown. She even had plans to become a doctor.

But, that wasn’t her true calling.

“… after I left high school, I wasn’t too certain whether that was a career I wanted to pursue and so I started volunteering and for me, volunteering is what really opened the gateway into my love and passion for law,” Thompson told the News Room on Tuesday.

She started volunteering with the youth arm of the Guyana Responsible Parenthood Association (GRPA) and she was subsequently exposed to the work of the Society against Sexual Orientation Discrimination (SASOD).

Attorney-at-law Thalia Thompson and Chief Justice Roxane George, S.C after Thompson was admitted to the local bar on Tuesday (Photo: Chris Leung/ November 16, 2021)

This made her acutely aware of some of the social and legal issues people face in their daily lives and that filled her with a sense of purpose that she was not aware of before- the law.

“I wanted to be part of a system that dealt with those issues,” she stated.

And so, she opted to study law. Because she had no prior academic experience, she first had to study sociology for one year at the University of Guyana. At the end of that year, with her 4.0 Grade Point Average (GPA), she was able to transfer into the Bachelor of Laws (LLB) programme.

“…many persons tried to discourage me from pursuing law,” Thompson said, however.

She said that people told her that ‘law is very difficult’ or ‘there is a possibility that you might fail’ but her enduring motivation came from her single mother. And just as her mother overcame the challenges she faced, so too did Thompson commit to her law studies.

Attorney-at-law Thalia Thompson (Photo: Chris Leung/ November 16, 2021)

And, she finished as one of the top students and moved onto the Hugh Wooding Law School in Trinidad and Tobago to secure her Legal Education Certificate (LEC).

After that two-year journey in the Twin Island Republic, through the COVID-19 pandemic and all, she finished strong and was ready to be admitted to the local bar to practice law in Guyana.

Thompson was admitted to the bar on Tuesday before Chief Justice (ag) Roxane George, S.C. Her petition was presented by prominent lawyer Teni Housty.

Her journey, she said, evidences the fact that individuals should not listen to naysayers. Instead, she encouraged people to find their passion and love and in doing so, she posited that anyone would be motivated to achieve whatever they set out to.

Meanwhile, now that she is officially Thalia Thompson, attorney-at-law, she still hopes to continue working with the organisations she volunteered with. And, she has a keen focus on human rights law and aiding individuals in accessing justice.

But first, since she received a scholarship from the Ministry of Public Service, she is committed to providing her services where needed. So for the next few years, she is eager to give back to the public sector.

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