Young Vincentian lawyer Chelsea Alexander was reluctant to pursue a career in law but a persistent mother, Dollis Alexander, ensured she stayed the course, completing her law degree and law school.
Her reluctance to pursue legal studies had to do with what she realized was demanded of her. But, having cultivated standards required to meet the challenges, she successfully completed the journey.
Addressing the ceremony at the High Court here when she and four others were called to practise law at the Bar, Alexander said it was those standards she intended to bring to her legal practice.
“I believe my reluctance at every stage was as a result of my realization of just how much the law required of me. She is indeed a jealous mistress and I had to cultivate the discipline and commitment to see my studies through to the end.
“This is the same discipline and commitment to excellence which, by God’s grace, I intend to employ throughout my career as an Attorney-At-Law,” Alexander said.
Alexander said she was “a reluctant entrant into the legal profession at almost every stage” of her legal education. She said that in 2012, while at the Community College, she “reluctantly signed up for CAPE Law” and she threatened to drop the course after the first week of classes.
Alexander said that in her naïveté she told her my mother how easy it was to drop the law course and pursue another course. She said she did not expect her mother to call the Registrar, who was her friend, with very specific instructions.
Alexander said she happened to go to the Registrar’s office on a matter unrelated to her law studies a few weeks after, when she had already settled into her classes, and the Registrar stopped her dead in her tracks saying: “You Miss Chelsea. Don’t feel you coming in here to drop law you know!”
Alexander also told the ceremony she reluctantly signed up for law school in 2018 after her failed attempt to convince her mother that she needed a one-year break from studies after attending th University of the West Indies (UWI).
“I remember saying to her, ‘If you want me to go to law school this year, then you will have to fill out the application.’ She gladly filled it out and stayed on top of the entire application process,” Alexander said, explaining how persistent her mother was in ensuring she did not drop her legal studies.
Alexander paid tribute her grandfather the late Robert Christopher Caesar and her Godfather the late Robert Andrew Cummings QC. She said their presence at the ceremony “would have meant the world” to her.
“My grandfather always showed a keen interest in my academic development. After each and every visit, he would say to me, ‘Study your lesson and don’t make no bwoy fool you.’ Those wise words from an old man who knew the value of an education have stuck with me to this day.
“My Uncle Andrew foresaw this day 8 years ago at Jadric’s bar call. I was about 16 years old at the time. We were standing on the outside of this court posing for pictures. In between takes, he turned to me and said, ‘Chelsea Anga, you are next. I am looking forward to your bar call.’
I remember laughing because I had never expressed an interest in becoming a lawyer. I can still laugh today because he was absolutely right. I was next,” Alexander said.
Alexander also thanked her parents, Dollis and Sebastian ‘One Love Bassy’ Alexander, whom she said “never wavered in their support.”
“They bore the financial burden of sending me to school and stuck with me through all the highs and lows. This achievement is as much theirs as it is mine,” she said of her parents.
Alexander said she also wished to thank Jason Ollivierre for all his love and support especially during the last five years, her best friends Shari, Breanna, Leorol and Sabrina and her little brother Akeel for being her very own cheer squad.
Alexander thanked Justice Brian Cottle, members of the Inner Bar and the Utter Bar.