I was placed with the Real Estate team. Tasks included researching areas of property law, drafting key documents for Real Estate deals and making enquiries with the Land Registry and other agencies, as well as preparing business development materials for the firm.
I really enjoyed the placement: I found I was working with an incredibly friendly team, got to know lots of different people and was kept busy with a range of very interesting tasks.
I was given lots of detailed and positive feedback on all the tasks I did, and, from the fact that the solicitors I did work for came back to me for more help later in the week, felt that the work I was doing was genuinely useful for the team.
I was allocated a host, who was a current trainee, who provided me with lots of support: she was always available to discuss any work I was doing and any points that I found difficult or confusing.
I think that the skills and experience I gained will be very useful for my career: I have plenty of experience in smaller firms and in areas of law working for individuals, but the insight I got into work for large commercial clients in a bigger firm will be invaluable.
Very well structured indeed, with an overarching project task, several pre-arranged meals and plenty of support from my host and the other trainees.
I got a real sense of how friendly the firm was and and how busy: there was a real buzz around the office.
The firm had made a real effort to put together a project task for me to focus on, to arrange welcome events for the placement students and to ensure that the team could give me plenty of work and opportunities to get an insight into their work.
I was working on the sort of tasks that a trainee solicitor would undertake.
Very much so, both from talking to current staff, and from the project task which asked me to produce a newsletter to pitch the firm's services to clients.
It confirmed my decision to train with a national commercial firm of solicitors.
I was paid £250 for the week which easily covered the cost of my expenses (a weekly season ticket) for the week.
There was a pizza lunch on the first day and a trip out with current trainees on the Thursday, as well as the chance to organise your own (in my case a departmental lunch on the Friday).
The open, non-hierarchical structure of the firm meant that it was very easy to get to know staff from other teams all the way up to partner level.
From talking to trainees I had a clear sense of the CSR activities and sporting teams that the firm organises.
It was a really friendly, well-structured, and insightful vacation placement: I certainly left with a sense of how Shoosmiths differs from other large commercial law firms.