I throughly enjoyed the Winter Vacation Scheme at Linklaters, during December 2019. Despite the restricted timeframe (2 weeks), I felt I still got a really good insight as to what the working culture at Linklaters is truely like. Everyone was very welcoming from the beginning, and the scheme was packed with workshops, activities, assignments, sessions and socials throughout.
As a Vacation Scheme student, I felt very valued at Linklaters. Most of the lawyers I spoke to in my practice group had followed the exact same route into the firm, and could completely emphathise with the Vacation Scheme process. I recieved some great work to complete, and spoke with a variety of different people.
From the very first day we were given an in-depth introduction to the firm and the type of work we would be completing. Everything was set out in a very straight forawrd manner. The graduate recruitment team emailed us all the time to ensure we know which workshops we should be attenting, and made a lot of effort to keep in touch throughout the two weeks. We also saw members of the team every day during various different activities. I always felt like if I had a question, I knew who and where to ask.
Whilst conducting the two assessments (one each week) and also completing work for my principle, I learnt a lot about time and work load management, which is very applicable to my degree.
However, the greatest skill I developed whilst being at Linklaters for two weeks was my networking ability. Through various networking dinners, breakfasts and sessions, I spoke to a variety of different people and made many new professional connections. This is something I had not done in excess amounts before.
The two week scheme at Linklaters was highly structured. We recieved a timetable at the beginning of the week, and so knew what activties were coming up each day.
We had workshops, practice overviews, talks and a variety of social events which were planned. On the other hand, we were also given plenty of time to sit in our practice areas and work on matters with our principle.
Everyone at Linklaters was especially welcoming. Having not done a Vacation Scheme before, I was rather open- minded and didn't know what the expect. All of the lawyers and other staff at the firm were friendly, and most importantly, they were very approachable. Moreover, one of the lawyers I had an interest in speaking with came to meet me for a coffee in her spare time and chat through her experiences, which I really valued.
I found the firm highly invested in us during the recruitment process itself and throughout the two weeks. We had talks from many senior partners, we were introduced to the two managing partners who gave their time to speak with us, we had many organised events and lots of workshops structured around personal development, especially in business.
I feel the Vacation Scheme gave a really good insight as to what it would be like to have a full time role at Linklaters. I really got a feel for how the teams work together in their practice areas, but also then combine firm-wide as a part of the wider Team Linklaters unit. I also understood more about working hours, and the different types of tasks I would be conducting.
The Winter Vacation Scheme really gave me a feel for the company culture at Linklaters. Everyone I spoke to really valued their position in the firm, and I can see how my personal values align with those at the firm. Moreover, we had a very informative workshop about diversity and inclusion on the first day, and then I saw how this feeds into everyone at the firm on a daily basis.
I beleive that the content in the day was very valuable to give me a better idea of my future career path. I particularly found the practice area overviews useful as I got to learn more about what each part of the firm do specifically. I gave me a better idea of where I would like to train.
I was reimbured expenses for the Assessment day, and then paid throughout the two week scheme. I felt this really helped, as I had to travel to London from university for the interview for the scheme, so this expenses was highly appreciated.
Overall, I would highly recommend the scheme to other students.
There were many different opportunities for networking, and for meeting othert lawyers at Linklaters. We had several networking sessions such as a welcome drinks session on the first day which helped us get to know the other Vacation scheme students and lawyers. We also had a networking breakfast and then a dinner in the second week.
The networking and social event opportunities were lovely. I really enjoyed the socials, and I found them very enjoyable. It was nice to go to the theatre for one evening. Furthermore, the networking breakfast and dinners were a great opportunity to meet lawyers from other practice areas in the firm, other than the department in which you were sat.
I found out lots about the different opportunities which employees can get involved with overseas and on client secondments. Trainees can do a secondment in their fourth seat, which seems very desireable to me.
I am not too sure about other activiries that employees can do outside of work, but I went to a few christmas events which was nice to socialise out of office.
I would certainly recommend this Winter Vacation scheme to a friend. I feel this opportunity gave me first-hand experience which is highly valuable. Moreover, the two week (or summer 4 week) scheme really gave me a genuine insight as to what it is like to be a lawyer on a daily basis.