The vacation scheme was a really good insight into the practicalities of life as a commercial lawyer. I was given real work by different team members, other than just my trainee 'buddy'. This made it clear that I was being given real work with very real implications, rather than artificial tasks that did not actually mean much in reality.
I felt really valued during my time at the firm. I was given work by different team members, and when I had questions more than just my direct team were willing to take the time to explain things to me. I was able to attend a team day out and was very much treated like any other permanent member of the team.
I was given various tasks to do, and was always able to ask for help whenever I felt I needed it. At the start of the week I was told that there are no stupid questions, but I was a bit nervous and did not really believe this. People were so supportive that by the end I really did feel that there were no stupid questions.
A law degree is very academic and focused around the law on paper. The placement was an invaluable insight into how the law actually works in practice, and just how different that can be! The placement means I will be able to approach the rest of my studies with a more analytical eye, thinking about how these things would actually work in practice.
Naturally, the insight centred around work that arose as and when. There were however a few central tasks set at the start of the week that I worked on throughout my time there as and when. This was a good mix of structured assessment, and flexibility to ensure I got a genuine insight into the life of a lawyer.
The atmosphere was surprisingly good. I had sort of come to expect quite a serious and quiet environment from a law office, but was pleasantly surprised here. People were able to joke around with each other, while still getting all of their work done. This sense of fun certainly seemed to contribute to productivity.
I felt as though I got a quite a bit of exposure to senior associates and partners. This clearly suggested that the firm was investing in me, as the time of these people is very valuable and in high demand. To get so much direct exposure to them suggested that the firm was invested in me.
At the end of the day, I was only there for a week and so could only develop an understanding of being there to a certain extent. Whilst there though, I did bits of work, spoke to people, attended meetings and training sessions, giving me quite a good picture of the varied roles that someone in the company may undertake.
The short time that I was there was insightful in terms of understanding the environment and culture of the company. Getting to see how people interact, attend various talks/meetings/training sessions, along with talking to various people in the course of preparing my end of week presentation, ensured that I got a good snapshot of the company culture.
It was really helpful. There are two areas of law that I knew I was keen to gain more insight in, and I was able to sit in the team that combines these two areas. This meant that I got really helpful insights into what might be an area I want to qualify into in the future.
I was paid a figure that was agreed beforehand.
There were opportunities to meet wider people. Naturally, I was sat in one team and so wanted to ensure that I was doing work with them. But there was a day out where I got to speak to a lot of people I would not have otherwise seen, and also people were friendly around the office.
They were good. A drinks social was organised one evening, which allowed me to get to know more people in a more informal, relaxed environment. This allowed me to speak to people form different teams in different parts of the office who I would likely not have met otherwise, which was good.
There were various informal and networking events where I was able to talk to people about wider opportunities. I was made aware of different opportunities, like yoga and socials, and team events and days out.
I would. It was really useful for someone at my stage. I was able to see some of the realities of working in a major commercial firm, and talk to people at all different levels of the firm. I felt like some of the work I did was genuinely important to people, which gave me a buzz.