A Quick Study with Alia Bandali

This ongoing series is aimed at getting to know what motivates and inspires UBC students about their learning — inside and outside the classroom.

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Alia Bandali

Allard School of Law student raises the bar at Business Law Clinic.

Meet Alia Bandali, Allard School of Law.


Why UBC?

AB: Initially making that choice was really tough for me. I had attended UBC for my undergrad and felt that the large programs and campus didn’t necessarily lend itself to a tight woven community. After connecting with a number of members from the local legal community, however, my eyes were opened to the collegiality and support available at the Peter A. Allard School of Law, the Vancouver Bar and generally within BC. Once I had made my decision to join Allard Law, I challenged myself to engage the student body and the legal community. That was one of the best decisions I have ever made! I love the program, the people and pretty much everything I have experienced… okay, okay, except first year exams.

Alia Bandali


How did you become involved with the Business Law Clinic at Allard Law? What do you find most exciting about the clinic?

AB: As my interests and background are business focused, I have made an effort to take part in the many Business Law program initiatives offered at Allard Hall. The clinic was advertised to the students and it really struck me as a great opportunity. I saw this as chance to cater to the dynamic and vibrant Vancouver business community and assist in its growth and success. This, coupled with my appreciation for volunteerism, really made the clinic an attractive opportunity. I feel very lucky to have been selected to be part of the first year of the clinic at Allard Hall. 

The most exciting aspect for me is that we have two very strong mentors as our supervising lawyers [Christine Baron, Lecturer and Catherine Chow, Adjunct Professor]. Christine and Catherine have really taken us under their wing and I’m grateful to have the opportunity to learn from them.


Have you always known you wanted to pursue law?

AB: Yes! My interest was sparked by a few courses I took at Sauder, but the first episode of The Good Wife sealed my fate.


What’s some advice you would give to future Allard Law students?

AB: Explore all your interests before law school. There is no direct path to this career. I go to school with some of the most inspiring people. The list includes firemen, recording artists, a former Pussycat Doll, video game developers, and coffee baristas (we have tonnes of those)!


Where are some places you would love to travel? Do you have any exchange plans?

Alia Bandali

AB: Rio de Janeiro, Beijing and Myanmar are on my must see list. I’ve applied for exchange and I’m hoping to go to Europe. My top choice is the University of Glasgow! 


What’s on your playlist these days?

AB: It’s a real mash up of genres. There are old favourites like Destiny’s Child, TLC (No Scrubs ammiright?) and Aaliyah. There are new school kids like T Swift, Drake, Chet Faker and Honne. And of course no playlist is complete without guilty pleasures like One Direction, Britney Spears and yes, I confess I’m a recent Belieber.  


How do you keep work-life balance – do you do anything to de-stress?

AB: Aside from travelling, I love to read (fiction). I’m currently re-reading the Harry Potter series for about the 10th time and cannot wait for the new script book to come out in July! My knife skills don’t really cut it, but I’ll eat anything anyone is willing to cook for me. When none of my friends are cooking, I find myself exploring Vancouver’s vibrant food scene as an outlet. One thing I can do is bake – my specialty is Toblerone shortbread cookies. I de-stress and my friends get cookies… it’s a win-win! I’m personally not blessed with much athletic ability (seeing a trend here?) but I enjoy watching and playing sports including tennis, softball, dodgeball and I am a long-time supporter of the Vancouver Canucks.

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