I thoroughly enjoyed the insight scheme at DLA Piper. Throughout my time there I experienced a variety of workshops, talks and presentations. Everyone around me was happy to be there and extremely friendly, and if I was ever unsure with anything, I was not afraid to ask for some assistance.
We were constantly reminded how well we had done to reach a place on the insight scheme, as a large amount of people had been rejected. This instilled myself and the other insight graduates with a lot of confidence, and I felt proud to have made it to that point.
All of the organisers were extremely welcoming and friendly, if I ever required any assistance I was not afraid to ask. During one of my presentation tasks I asked for advice from one of the workshop organisers as I was nervous, and they sat me down and explained what I should do to improve my presentation skills, which really helped with my confidence.
Over the three days we received a lot of information in a variety of different formats. In particular, I enjoyed the CV writing workshop, as this has helped my understand what employers are looking for in a good CV. Also, I was introduced to the idea of Pro Bono legal work, which I had not heard of before. I am eager to explore this as a volunteering option when I go back to university.
The insight was well packed and we were presented with a variety of activities, so I did not feel bored at any point. However, it would have been good to have received the itinerary beforehand so I could have properly prepared myself for the three days (it would have perhaps helped calmed my nerves too).
Both the organisers and my fellow insight graduates were extremely grateful to be there, creating a happy and relaxed atmosphere. Although we were given tasks that sometimes made me nervous, we received a lot of guidance and praise which helped lower the tone, and generally made the experience very enjoyable.
As well as an overview on how the legal industry works in the business world, we observed some presentations on topics such as responsible business, and employability. These really inspired me, as they made me realise how I needed to adapt to become the best version of myself, in order to become a successful lawyer in the future.
We observed a lot of different presentations from a lot of important people, all discussing different topics, and I deemed them all to be very important. These speakers were honest about the long hours they had to endure to get them to where they needed to be, and also spoke about the endless rewards they now receive from having worked so hard.
As we met a variety of people with varying authority within the firm, I think we were given a good insight into the culture of DLA Piper. We observed talks on the importance of diversity to the firm, this was stressed a lot throughout the three days, and I believe it is an important aspect of their firm.
Due to listening to a variety of different speakers who all worked in different sectors within the legal industry, I was provided with a lot information, and a variety of possible career paths. The information I received was the beginning of me understanding what career path I would like to take, I can now build on this through my own research.
I was not paid during this insight scheme, I also would not expect to receive a payment, as the experience and information I received was valuable enough to me.
They did reimburse my travel expenses to and from the firm, and also put me up in a hotel for 3 evenings.
We met people at various stages in their legal career. On the first day, we ate with people currently training at DLA Piper, I found this particularly helpful as they advised me how they got their training contracts, and what the process involved. Then throughout the days we met people who had just completed their training contracts, and also people who had been working in law for decades.
The networking opportunities were good, as they were varied. Some of them involved sitting around a table and talking to people in small groups. Another one was walking around the room whilst eating and drinking (which I particularly liked, as it gave you the freedom to talk to who you liked).
Both social and volunteering opportunities were made clear to us at the insight scheme. I understand that at DLA Piper in particular, they have several opportunities for employees to travel to their other offices around the world (due to being an international firm). This can be through a volunteering scheme, or as part of their work.
I would definitely recommend this insight to a friend. I received a lot of information that has inspired and encouraged me to try and become a lawyer in the future. I also know how to achieve this goal using the career advice I was given over the few days that I was there.