Intern at Shearman & Sterling LLP

Duration
Insight / Vacation Scheme (< 4 Weeks)
Region
London Central London and City
Review Date
Salary
Less than £ 10,000
Roles
Banking/Finance

8.6/10

About You
10.0
The Organisation
10.0
Everything Else

5.0

About You

1. To what extent did you enjoy the insight?

I had the opportunity to really find out more about the firm’s work, areas of specialisation and, most importantly, its culture. The trainees, the associates as well as the partners were very approachable. As an illustration of this, I was once given the opportunity to meet a senior partner from another department to ask him questions about his practice and recent trends affecting his clients. He was extraordinarily friendly and helpful. The HR team were incredibly supportive throughout the entire vacation scheme.

10/10

2. To what extent did you feel valued during your time at the company or firm?

I felt very valued. My mentor, a trainee, kept me always up to date and involved with one deal he was working on. He also genuinely made use of my work (e.g. proofreading, research etc.) and would always take the time to give me feedback and to answer my questions. Similarly, my supervisor ¬(an associate) gave me genuine work and, when appropriate, adopted some of my suggested corrections.

10/10

3. How much guidance/support did you receive during the insight?

The vacation scheme was definitely well structured and struck a good balance between learning, work and social activities. Almost every day one session was dedicated to the presentation of one practice by one or two associates. This enabled us to gain greater insights into the firm’s core departments and to understand the differences in terms of work-life balance, type of work and skills required between various areas of law. The head of the HR as well as other HR team members frequently met us individually and as a group and made every effort to ensure that we were benefitting from the vacation scheme.

10/10

4. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and information you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?

The vacation scheme at Shearman enabled me to understand more clearly how commercial awareness is relevant to the work that lawyers do. This was particularly due to the opportunity I had to work on complex deals where important commercial considerations had proved determining in shaping the structure of the transaction. In addition, having the chance to talk to associates about how recent political, economic and regulatory developments affected their practice enabled me to further appreciate the extent to which current affairs can have an impact on the day-to-day activities of City lawyers.

10/10

The Organisation

5. How well structured was the insight?

We were given a timetable of social events and presentations on day one. Having been given the opportunity to express our preferences for particular areas of law prior to the vacation scheme, we were assigned to two different departments. In our very first day we attended an IT class which helped us to familiarise ourselves with Shearman’s IT system. At the beginning of each seat we were introduced to lawyers from the department and in particular to our supervisor (usually an associate) and our mentor (usually a trainee). Each day was structured in a way which struck a fair balance between learning activities (morning presentations), assignments and socials.

10/10

6. How was the general atmosphere during your insight?

It is fair to say that most people at Shearman were very friendly, easy-going and straightforward. The latter is the aspect which I enjoyed most about the firm’s culture. Although Shearman’s lawyers were visibly very busy, this never interfered with their politeness. Generally, the lawyers I had a chance to talk to had a high opinion of the firm and often stressed the quality of the work as being one of the most attractive aspect of working at Shearman.

10/10

7. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?

The morning presentations on the firm’s core practices were clearly well organised and insightful. We also had many chances to interact with the professional development team and it soon became apparent that Shearman takes training very seriously. This is certainly part of Shearman’s efforts to differentiate itself from other US rivals where less emphasis is placed on structured training. Personal and professional development was very valued despite the fact that we only spent two weeks at the firm. For instance, my supervisor gave me extra sources to further my understanding of one particular area of finance law when I expressed a particular interest in it.

10/10

8. To what extent did the insight help you to understand what it would be like to have a full time role with the company or firm?

Significantly. As mentioned in one previous answer, one of the most distinguishing characteristic of the firm’s culture is its frankness. This enabled me to gain a relatively complete view of the advantages and disadvantages of working at Shearman. Generally, it is fair to say that although lawyers at the firm work long hours (though not as bad as those of their K&E’s counterparts) they feel rewarded both financially but also in terms of the quality of the deals they get to work on.

10/10

9. How much did the insight help you in understanding the company culture?

It is certainly correct to say that whilst one can learn a great deal about a firm by conducting research into its practices and clients, the best way to get a sense of a firm’s culture is to experience it. This was particularly true about my experience with Shearman: those two weeks really allowed me to find out whether I was a good fit for the firm.

10/10

10. How valuable was the content in helping you to decide on your future career path?

My experience at Shearman consolidated my interest in commercial law. The deals I worked on were both intellectually challenging as well as commercially complex, two of the main reasons why I had been attracted by a career in commercial aw prior to applying to Shearman. Furthermore, experiencing firsthand the impressive level of professional development that junior lawyers at the firm achieve already in their early years made me even more aware of the benefits of training at a US firm.

10/10

Other Information

11. Were you paid or reimbursed adequately for this experience?


12. Were there opportunities for networking and meeting other employees of the company or firm?

5/10

13. How were the networking/ social event opportunities?

5/10

14. Did you find out about activities that employees can get involved in outside of work?

5/10

15. Would you recommend this insight to a friend?

5/10