This programme was highly informative as well as enjoyable. Being able to hear from so many different people working in the firm gave a well-rounded insight to what being a part of DLA Piper would be like. The programme was very well structured, and I feel as though I got a lot of out my time here.
The graduate recruitment team make you feel very comfortable from the very first session, and by the end of it you feel as though you have been there for a lot longer than three days. All of the members of staff who took part seemed to want to be there and made you feel a part of something. It was also repeated multiple times how we had achieved something just by being on the programme, so overall, I felt very valued.
Everyone who joined in with the programme was very helpful and supportive. Questions were always encouraged, and the answers seemed very well thought out. The workshops were ran very well, trainees or those leading the task would come round and help when needed.
I feel as though I have gained a lot of useful skills and knowledge to help me with my degree and progressing through my legal career. There was a lot of lecture-style sessions, all of which were highly informative and ended with the speaker answering any of our questions. There were also workshops giving us an insight into what it would be like to work in this industry and helping with general application skills.
The structure of the insight scheme was very well thought out. We were given a timetable on the first day telling us what each session would be, and who was running it. I felt as though the scheme answered a lot of questions that I had about the firm in general, the process of becoming a solicitor and what working in a global business law firm entails. However, I think there possibly needed to be more breaks.
The atmosphere was very friendly. When talking to future and current trainees about their experience with DLA Piper, they described it as 'warm' and how even though a very large firm, everyone feels very close. This was also the impression I left with after the programme as everyone involved was approachable and helpful throughout. The graduate recruitment team who organised the scheme make a clear effort to ensure the students feel comfortable, by setting up icebreakers and being very approachable throughout.
There were multiple workshops taking place over three days. These looking at developing skills that we will be able to transfer to applications and in our future training. As there was a large amount of students on the scheme, there was not much opportunity to have one-to-one time with those on the programme and it was more group focused activities. However, individuals could ask questions or approach the graduate team during breaks, allowing for personal development in this way.
While on the scheme, I was able to talk to a range of people at different points in their working life. Some were about to start their training contract, some current trainees and many who were already qualified and had worked to positions such as partner. This gave many different views on what it would be like to have a full time role with DLA Piper, at many different stages of my career. Furthermore, one of the workshops we participated in was designed to illustrate what it would be like to work on an acquisition. This gave further insight into the type of work we would be doing, which I found particularly useful.
From all of the talks and workshops I feel as though I have a gained a lot of insight into DLA Piper's culture. The firm seems very friendly and everyone working there appears very comfortable. Open days are not long enough to fain a proper insight into this aspect of a firm, and therefore I am glad I was able to take part in this scheme.
As someone already aspiring for a future career in a law firm, taking part in this scheme did not help me too much with deciding what job I may want in the future. However, the programme did give a lot of information on the practice areas that solicitors at DLA Piper can be a part of. I found this to be very helpful.
DLA Piper offered to reimburse the majority of expenses, for example, travel and food. They also provided a hotel for those who would have had to travel long distances to reach the London office, and provided dinner on the first night. There was food provided every day of the scheme.
There were not many opportunities for networking. Although there were many talks from different individuals working within the firm, there was very few times they would stay behind in breaks so students could talk with them. Even with the chance to ask questions at the end of presentations, I would have preferred a chance to network directly with some of these solicitors.
There was not really any opportunity to network with partners and those higher up in the firm, but there were a few chances to talk to trainees. There was a social event on the first night to make sure everyone was comfortable, but this was directed at students on the programme.
All of the speakers were happy to answer any questions and often answers led to information about what they did outside work. Many had other positions, working on committees or getting involved in a lot of pro bono for instance. Others spent a lot of time with their family or had particular hobbies.
This insight programme was very informative and enjoyable. The students were all very friendly and all of staff who spoke and let workshops were very helpful. I would recommend applying as it gives a lot of insight into DLA Piper as a firm and the role of a solicitor in general.
Insight / Vacation Scheme (< 4 Weeks)
19th April 2019