Remember a time we thought we could choose our career paths? That if we wanted to be a vet, a policewoman or journalist, we could just 'do' it?
Now barristers-to-be are the latest to have their dreams dashed as students beginning university may now have to spend up to £127,000 to qualify.
New chair of the Bar Council, Chantal-Aimée Doerries QC, recently highlighted the massive cost and the effect it could have on diversity and social mobility within the profession.
She told the Guardian: “For students starting at university this year, the cost of qualifying as a barrister could approach £127,000.
“I hear from the junior bar that practising barristers paying off debts of between £40,000 to £60,000 is by no means uncommon [but] those figures are for individuals who completed their undergraduate degrees before higher tuition fees were introduced."
And in the long term, since most senior judges start off as barristers, putting less privileged students off the profession could have a massive impact on the legal system - and our perceptions of it.
Doerries points out that there are initiatives out there to give less privileged students an extra push - but that as most students find even on average-costing courses, it'll be a financial juggling act:
“Bursaries and scholarships are available, and some may have savings or come from a wealthy background, but for most people, funding for their qualification will come from juggling study and part-time work, student and commercial loans, and family contributions.”
In other words, for those hoping to be barristers, things are gonna be a whole lot harder from now on.
Feature image: John Halbrook