This week in our MHC Life Series, we speak to Life Sciences & Consumer Product Regulatory Associate Saadi Siddiky. Saadi tells us about his journey to MHC, his typical day working from home, and his first job as a food columnist.
Tell us a bit about you and your career journey to MHC – what inspired you to get into this career?
I come from a family of doctors, so my choice to study law in university was probably more driven by a strong sense of teenage rebellion. I thought I would quit after first year and become a comic book artist, but, unexpectedly, I did well in university that year, and I thought “Fine, I will give it another year!”. The same thing happened in my second and third year. After university, I was lucky enough to receive a scholarship for a degree at Harvard Law School and then a second one at Oxford University. So I kept getting drawn deeper and deeper into the vortex without a solid sense of purpose.
I think it was only when I started practising law that I grew to appreciate the dedication, skill and acumen it takes to be a quality lawyer. Most of my peers had figured out in university, or even earlier, their love for the legal profession. I admit I was a tad late in the game. I moved from London to Dublin for my spouse who I met in graduate school. Almost six years later, I am proud to call Dublin home.
What was your first job?
As a student, there were several jobs I did in parallel. I was a tutor for Particle Physics and Differential Calculus for advanced high school students; I drew comic strips and wrote food columns for a local newspaper; I also used to enter eating contests, many of which I proudly, and unabashedly, won – the prize money helped pay rent!
Talk us through a typical day for you during the COVID-19 pandemic…
My day, like most lawyers’, can vary widely depending on the work flow. Typically, I try to get a workout or a run in before starting the work day. For lunch, I might go for a stroll and after work, I set aside time to speak with my parents and spend time with my spouse. We would usually cook together and fuss over what to watch on Netflix. Weekdays are generally more social.
What's your favourite place you've ever visited?
Rwanda. I spent a year and a half working across East and West Africa. I enjoyed every bit of it, but Rwanda will always have a special place in my heart.
What pastimes do you enjoy?
My interests are quite random and disparate: Ashtanga yoga, cross-country running, Russian literature, graphic novel art, exploring new food places.
I am also keen on issues around promoting diversity and inclusion at work, particularly in the legal sector. I am involved with OUTLaw Network as a Committee Member and am part of MHC’s Diversity Committee.
If I wasn’t a lawyer, I would be...
A personal trainer, a yoga teacher or a graphic novel artist.
One thing most people don’t know about you?
I was a problem child in school. The principal got so tired of seeing me, he delegated the “Saadi issue” to the Vice Principal. When I told my school counsellor that I was considering law school, his response was “Maybe you will fare better with something less academic?”