Faces of IEU: Enrique Rodriguez

@Natalia Soto Kure

“Having a strong diplomatic vocation, I will start preparing for the national exams to enter the diplomatic service in Spain.”

Enrique is a fourth year, Bachelor of Laws student from Almeria in the south of Spain. He was raised there but lived in Maastricht, Netherlands, whilst studying at UWC (United World Colleges), and did an exchange semester in Reims, France. Learn more about Enrique, his internships and his experience in this interview done for Faces of IEU:

About Him

What are your hobbies and interests?

My hobbies include reading, cooking, and traveling. My interests include conflict resolution and issues related to European integration.

Why did you choose IEU?

IE seemed like the perfect place to pursue a Bachelor’s degree. It allowed me to return to Spain after finishing high school in the Netherlands, while staying in an enriching, international environment. Furthermore, the comparative approach of the LLB program was very appealing. Altogether it seemed like the perfect choice.

What do you want to do after graduation?

Having a strong diplomatic vocation, I will start preparing for the national exams to enter the diplomatic service in Spain. However, I am considering pursuing a Master’s degree in European Studies beforehand.

About his experience at IEU

What is the most valuable thing you have learned from a professor regarding your future career path?

In my third year I took an elective course with Professor Nikolina Židek about Eastern European politics, which sparked a huge interest in me in transitional justice. Through this class I discovered a fascinating area of research, which I have continued in my final project. Furthermore, having a strong European identity and a diplomatic vocation, I am convinced that I will develop this interest in my future professional activity. In my opinion, one of the most valuable aspects of IE University is that it provides you with a passionate faculty that is always willing to help you expand your interests and capabilities.

How has IEU’s comparative law methodology shaped your perspective on the legal world?

The program provides strong foundations in EU law, and the comparative outlook allows students to get a sense of the nature and functioning of the main legal systems in the world. While we don’t study any particular jurisdiction in depth, the comparative methodology helps us to develop a creative legal mind, as we explore how the same legal concepts and doctrines apply in different systems. You learn how to approach case studies from different angles and perspectives.

What opportunities have you taken advantage of during your time at IEU?

In my first two years I took part in the Labs. First I joined the IR Lab, where I worked as a consultant for The Minga Foundation. I collaborated on the evaluation of different social projects around the world. Then I became involved with the Legal Clinic, where I conducted extensive research on the sanctioning powers of the Public Administration. It was a great opportunity to work side by side with professional lawyers and on a real case in just my second year of studies. These opportunities give you very valuable exposure in your first years of studies. Furthermore, I have participated in several Moot competitions – mock trials where law students plead for either or both parties on a fictitious case following specific, real-life procedural norms. My experience in “Moot Madrid” last year, where the team had to deal with a complex arbitration case, was very rewarding and enriching, and I have decided to join the Europa Moot Court this year.

Finally, other projects that I have done during my time at IE University include taking part in the “Thought For Food Challenge”, an international contest that empowers changemakers to come up with bold solutions to feed 9+ billion people by 2050, and setting up “Leap Conferences,” an annual event that brings together inspiring leaders from different walks of life in order to challenge students to leave their comfort zones.

 

About his professional experience

Last summer I interned at the Litigation and Arbitration department of Uría Menéndez in Madrid, where I assisted lawyers in the drafting of several types of legal documents, and with the preparation of an arbitration case before the Civil and Commercial Arbitration Court (CIMA). It was a very intense learning experience, but I was glad to see that I was prepared to take on the daily challenges of the internship. IE University’s  focus on professional soft skills will always be appreciated by firms, as even as interns we’re in a position to help them with the delivery of high-quality content.