As part of our ‘Meet the Team’ series, we are delighted to feature Antonia Manti, from our Legal team who celebrates her first anniversary with Cleveland & Co this week! Antonia has had an eventful first year with us; she was our first person to undertake our secondment programme and last year, spent 3 months in Sydney. To celebrate Antonia’s first year , we sat down to ask her a few questions about her experiences at Cleveland & Co and what she enjoys about her job.
Why did you join Cleveland & Co?
I joined Cleveland & Co because I wanted to work in a law firm that specialises in and has a global experience in financial services and corporate, embodies values I could relate to, supports women in the legal profession, and has a wonderful culture. During my interview with Emma, I found her warm, friendly, and approachable, and during my time at Cleveland & Co, I have been encouraged and supported to take on a lot of responsibility, progress rapidly, and made a lot of friends in the process.
What are the best bits of working at Cleveland & Co so far?
The best bits of working at Cleveland & Co are the responsibility entrusted to every member of the team, the interesting legal work, the opportunities for progression and support with working towards career goals, and, most importantly, the camaraderie of the team. I feel like a member of a close-knit group of friends and professionals working towards a common goal, and pushing each other to be better every day.
Tell us about your career path.
I studied my LLB at Newcastle University and afterwards completed the Legal Practice Course (LPC) and an MSc in Law, Business and Management at the University of Law. Thereafter, I moved back to Cyprus where I completed a year of training with a well-known law firm, the Cyprus Bar Exams, and qualified as a lawyer/advocate with the Cyprus Bar Association. During my training in Cyprus, I developed an interest for corporate law and pursued this further by completing an LLM in Corporate Law at the University of Durham from where I graduated among the top 10 of my year.
After graduating from Durham, I moved to London, and I worked as a Paralegal in the corporate and private equity team of a Silver Circle law firm before I came across the opportunity to work with Emma and the team at Cleveland & Co. I joined C&Co one year ago as a Paralegal. Three months after I joined, I was promoted to an Associate. Along with my promotion, I was offered the opportunity to be the first secondee of C&Co and I travelled and lived in Sydney for 3 months. Living and working in Sydney was a huge privilege and a wonderful experience, an experience of a lifetime.
My short-term goal is to qualify as a solicitor in England and Wales. I will be completing my training contract with C&Co in November 2023 and will be qualifying as a solicitor then. Once I do so, I will then be dual qualified (both in the UK and in Cyprus)! I also aim to qualify with another jurisdiction, potentially, with the New York Bar Association.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
The best piece of advice I have received is the quote: ‘an airplane stays flying because it is moving; once it stops moving, it begins to crash’. Experience so far has taught me that it doesn’t matter if you’re moving at 5mph or 50mph, the important thing is that you’re moving forward. So, I would encourage everyone to keep moving – never stop believing and working towards your goals and dream. Keep running and chasing them, and when you do achieve them, never rest on past laurels, keep moving!
If you didn’t go into law, what other role might you have done?
Law is and has always been my passion, so undoubtedly in a world where we can be anything, I would choose to be a lawyer. However, that being said, I have always been interested in working with businesses (thus, the passion for corporate law), so most likely I would have chosen a role where I can pursue this interest, such as an investment analyst.
Favourite spot in London and why?
I would say Primrose Hill at Regent’s Park, especially during summertime!
Tell us a surprising or a fun fact about you.
I used to be part of the Cypriot swimming team, I love diving and windsurfing!
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