2 week legal internship.
The vacation scheme was great. I had a variety of work to do, the culture of the firm is fantastic - everyone is friendly and supportive - and there was a range of social events with the other students too. I couldn't fault it. Even the assessment presentation was interesting to explore and work in a team for.
I felt really valued. I was given a range of work tasks to do which usually would be that of a trainee's so I felt that I was given a good amount of responsibility and that people appreciated it. My team was also really talkative and worked well together so it was nice to feel welcomed there.
My buddy was fantastic - she explained things well to me before any task, and answered my millions of questions. While she was my main support, I didn't feel unable to ask others for help if I needed it. In addition on our induction day we received a lot of information about the scheme itself so it was nice to be able to know what was to coming up in the placement.
I think having been exposed to and working with many types of court documents (being seated in litigation) I will be more familiar with their names and uses during the diploma. I think the most important skills I developed here were attention to detail with all of the documentation, proof reading and research tasks. I feel I developed my skills in research itself, as I was researching areas of law that I had not before, and using different websites to those which I am used to. I think this will help me when I return to university and beyond.
On our induction day we received a plan of the 2 weeks so this was great to know in advance how the scheme was structured. All of the events went ahead as planned, and otherwise it was normal days in the office.
The atmosphere and culture of CMS is one of its best qualities. Everyone, whether legal, secretarial and even reception are so friendly, will always smile and say hello, and many with a good sense of humour.
The first day was our day based on training - including IT, presentation and research skills, which I thought was done well. A lot to take in, but proved useful in the weeks to come. I wouldn't expect much more training for a 2 week placement, as the training was on-the-job whilst performing our tasks.
It definitely helped me understand more the tasks of a trainee, as often my own buddy trainee would get me to help her with tasks that she was working on, or even delegate them to me wholly. I liked this aspect of the placement as I felt that I was given responsibility but at the same time could understand the kinds of tasks I would hopefully be getting involved with in the future.
Being able to talk to my buddy trainee and department I felt that I understood better how the company culture worked. Not only did I learn how the teams interacted with each other, I learned a lot more about the CSR and social events which CMS puts on as a firm. For example, the CMS football championship which is soon to be taking place in Glasgow. Overall I feel even just being in my seat and working with the team helped me understand the kind of people who work here but then in addition they told me many things about how the firm is run in terms of events and socially.
Having already been committed to a career in law, the vacation scheme more confirmed that I'd love to be involved in a legal career at the particular firm, CMS. It confirmed my commitment to progressing into a traineeship in the years to come, and consequently qualify to be a lawyer, although this was something I was already pretty sure about.
It's the highest pay I've seen for a Scottish vacation scheme so far.
On the first day we lunched and had a drinks and nibbles session with current trainees and the HR staff at a restaurant in Edinburgh. It was also with the other vacation scheme students at other offices in Glasgow and Aberdeen. After that we also had two presentations on secondments and life as a newly qualified lawyer, We had dinner and drinks again on the second week with other trainees and Graduate Recruitment in Glasgow, which was lovely. These were the planned events, in addition to this I went out for food and drinks twice with my team.
I loved them - it was so nice to meet everyone and ask questions about the firm, and to do this while endulging in delicious food and drinks went down nicely!
I learned more about the CMS Academy training programmes which take place across Europe which sound amazing. The football CMS league was frequently talked about given that it was coming up in July, whilst other sports training such as netball was mentioned. In addition I learned more about the CSR activities that lawyers get involved with here - for example paired reading in schools on Wednesday lunchtimes.
I would definitely recommend this insight to a friend. It was pretty much all that you could hope for from a vacation scheme, with great social events, a variety of exposure to different kinds of work, the opportunity to speak with employees all over the firm and your department. For the assessment for traineeships it was pretty fair with a presentation and partner interview. From what I've heard all of the friends that I've made here have equally enjoyed their time.