Summer internship at a leading global law firm that allows candidates to experience the daily life of a high level commercial solicitor.
The Summer Internship at DLA Piper offered me the best three weeks of my professional life so far. I learnt a tremendous amount about the company's working culture, its people and its current business strategy.
My favourite part was being challenged to perform at my very best every single day, combined with constant feedback the recruitment team gave me. Truly everyone was helpful at DLA Piper.
Simply put, extremely valued! It was obvious from the very first day that DLA Piper places tremendous amounts of value in hiring the right people for the future. All candidates received regular feedback and contact with HR, the partners, and their respective line-managers.
Not only were HR and the whole team were honest about what they were looking for in candidates, but they were also very approachable and had a decent down-to-earth way of going about things. This is not to say the internship was easy, but rather that I was pushed to do my best under all circumstances and work harder than ever to earn a place at DLA Piper.
I genuinely could not have asked for more and I made this very clear to the team regularly! HR, my line-managers and the whole team were available whenever I needed advice on how to approach tasks, how to conduct myself in various different circumstances and how to have the best possible chance of receiving a job at the end of the vacation scheme.
I gained an enormous amount of business and career skills, such as confidence in having chosen the correct career path, approaching various applications and interviews, as well as simply having an organised way of going about work and daily tasks.
The insight scheme gave me a bigger picture as to why I chose to study law in the first place and how I could use the academic skills in a real-life professional environment.
I was fortunate enough to receive a training contract offer so I will take this experience on board with me as I move on to the LPC next year. Therefore, personally, the insight was more of a culmination and test of my academic and personal skills gained so far. It truly tested all aspects of university studies and extracurricular opportunities, which was fantastic to experience every single day during the internship.
I could not have asked for a better experience! Each day was structured independently with new tasks and activities that gave me an opportunity to find out more about a career in law, the company in general and to connect with other graduates on the internship.
Especially enjoyable was the induction week in London that consisted mostly of talks and workshops around the ethics of a commercial legal career and the particularities of DLA Piper.
During the two weeks, I had the pleasure of spending at the Sheffield office of DLA Piper, my team and I were given an assessed task of holding a business pitch to an imaginary client in a setting that was based on a real-life deal. We were given a large amount of time to research, structure and prepare our pitches as a team. This was a clear testament to the company's strategy; DLA Piper values great team-players!
The atmosphere was absolutely thrilling! From the very first day, the team were extremely professional and supportive. I thoroughly enjoyed the daily tasks, the pitches, and the challenges I faced during the internship. I was tested mentally and intellectually, and I enjoyed it very much.
Lots of candidates said they felt stressed and anxious about the whole ordeal, but I took DLA Piper's advice on board from the get-go; just be yourself and make sure to enjoy every single day of the internship. I could not have asked for more, not in a million years.
DLA Piper's summer internship was structured to test different particularities of the candidates every day. I was interviewed, put through verbal and written assignments and genuinely put on the spot, in order to find out my true character in a high-stakes legal environment.
The induction week was a particularly interesting testament to DLA Piper's investment in their candidates because it was all legal/business workshops and presentations about the skills we would need to show throughout the scheme.
More than I could have expected. I had endless opportunities to network and experience associates' and partners' views on what it's like to work in a large law firm like DLA Piper.
The two weeks of work experience we undertook at the regional offices were all modeled after a regular day at the office. We attended meetings with our line-managers, learnt about task delegation within the teams we were working and we simply had the opportunity to complete real-life legal work.
It helped me greatly. It's one thing to write fancy promotional sentences on a website but it's a completely different thing to actually see the company policy and culture come to life in front of you. DLA Piper really is team-oriented and strives to find people from various different backgrounds to supplement its growth to a modern ethical direction. The culture is inclusive, enthusiastic and fostering!
As I wrote before, I could not have asked for more from such a short span of time. Every day taught me something new about the working culture, social life, and the future outlook of DLA Piper.
It made me realize that I made the right choice in choosing to pursue a legal career.
There were plenty of opportunities to do so, especially during the induction week during which various different partners and lawyers held talks about their experiences in the company.
During the two weeks of work, the team constantly encouraged candidates to step out of the office and go meet new people in the company.
DLA Piper organised dinners and other drinks receptions during the internship that brought candidates and upper-level lawyers together in a fun and relaxed way!
If that was not enough, I had plenty of opportunities to simply go out of my way and get involved with other members of the team and learn from them myself! The company really encouraged self-initiative as they should! Brilliant!
I learnt so much about DLA Piper's Pro Bono initiatives and its commitment to guiding its business in an ethical and inclusive way. The company is clearly very passionate about giving back to its surrounding communities around the world. DLA Piper gives its lawyers endless opportunities to participate in pro bono activities that supplement their daily work. If there' a company you'd like to choose for its ethical values and commitments, DLA Piper is the one.
I would recommend any law student to apply for the Summer Internship and fight for a chance to get involved in the most exciting law firm in the world.
Law students and graduates should attend networking events to get ahead in the company before they even send in their applications. Recruitment at DLA Piper really values an enthusiastic mindset!