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‘I knew my dream, but I had to create it’

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Young law student encourages young people to pursue their dreams

By Cooper Stevenson

Young Bermudians need to learn how to be creators, not consumers.

That was the message from 18-year-old law student, Eron Hill, at the Alpha Phi Alpha symposium last week, where he joined a panel of the fraternity's brightest Bermudian members and minds to talk about the issues facing the Island.

While not a member of the fraternity himself, Eron was invited onto the panel to “represent the youth voice” and discuss the problems young Bermudians face today.

“We talked about whether we're educating our kids to become consumers or creators, people who are going to be entrepreneurs and heads of businesses, or people who just get by,” Eron said.

“There's a very significant difference between creating careers and creating jobs. One's going to last and one's going to be sustained. A job is temporary but a career you can sustain.”

But in such an economy, said Eron, taking the risk of starting your own company is a step too few are willing to take.

“It takes someone with some serious testicular fortitude to decide that in this economic climate.

“Am I going to go with the safe job with a big company or am I going to branch out on my own? Its' a very significant risk that any person takes when they want to start their own business, but I think it's a risk that we need to see taken more often.

“I think it comes down to the individual, for someone to say: ‘You know what, I'm going to go against the norm.' And I think that needs to be embraced more often.

“In our education system, maybe we teach kids to think in a box and so when they think outside the box they're told no, this is how we do it.

“Maybe our education system is teaching kids how to follow suit, follow orders, as opposed to think. I think that should be the goal of education, to teach kids how to think.”

And for an example of outside-the-box thinking, look no further than the precocious, soon-to-be law student himself.

After graduating high school two years early, at the age of 16, Eron took the initiative to achieve what had been his goal since he was 11-years-old.

And with acceptances into top law programmes at universities across England, that dream is not too far away.

“I'm an aspiring lawyer — one day I hope to be called to the Bermuda Bar — and I knew that from the tender age of 11, that's what I wanted to do.

“When I was 16, I returned home, and at that age there's nothing really to do if I'm not in school, and so I had to find something to do with my days.

“And so every day I found myself in Magistrates' Court from 9.30 to 4.30. I'd just sit there in Plea Court watching the lawyers.

“Eventually Ms [Elizabeth] Christopher, who I had a relationship with before, she had seen me and she asked: ‘Hey, kid. What are you doing here?'

“And so that caught her eye, seeing me there for so long. And she said: ‘Tell you what, come up to Supreme Court with me next week. Put on some pants and a tie and a jacket.'

“And so she gave me a one week span to shadow her and I've been with her for over a year. I've now moved on to Compass Law with Charles Richardson but that really opened windows for me.”

The ubiquitous Catch 22 for graduates these days is getting a job which requires both a degree and experience in the field. For most graduates, the two are mutually exclusive.

With the job market the way it is, Mr Hill encouraged young Bermudians to find someone to look up to and reach out to them.

“I knew my dream, but I had to create it. I had to put myself out there by sitting in the courtroom, and that's the difference between some students, that bridges the gap.

“Some people want to see that ad in the newspaper that says he come along and do this. That's where everyone's going to go.

“It's a very special few who reach to who they idolise, and so that's my advice to young people. Whatever your field, there's going to be somebody you look up to, someone who is an important figure in that field.

“Reach out to them. Go out to them. These are very busy people, and so when we send them e-mails, that may go to their junk mail, that may get looked over.

“Show up at the office. You have to go that step further.”

Young Achiever Eron Hill is pursuing his dream of becoming a lawyer.
Young Achievers Logo
Photo by Mark Tatem The then-Premier, Paula Cox met with Eron Hill and three other young debators before their trip to a competition in Scotland in August 2012. With Mr Hill in the Cabinet Office meeting were Michael Cabot, Glenn Simmons and Marcus Bean
Eron Hill speaks to the media at the AB Place Media Room about the newly created Bermuda National Youth Council in 2010. Mr Hill encouraged people to get in touch about issues affecting the Island.

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Published March 24, 2014 at 9:00 am (Updated March 24, 2014 at 11:52 am)

‘I knew my dream, but I had to create it’

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